Assistant fitness trainers put their skills on show at RNC

The winners are standing in the gym holding their certificates and medals. Left to right – Leon (bronze), Dean (gold) and Nathan (silver).

At RNC (Royal National College for the Blind) we were delighted to host the Inclusive Skills fitness trainer competition in partnership with AoC (Association of Colleges), welcoming students from specialist colleges across the UK. The Inclusive Skills initiative is designed to promote competition across a wide range of skills to explore the benefits for people on vocational courses and provides an opportunity to show employers what students can do.
For the fitness trainer competition today competitors had to plan a mini gym induction for a new gym user in order to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the gym equipment and the physical benefits of different exercises, as well as demonstrating basic customer service skills when dealing with clients.


RNC Sport and Recreation teacher Aaron Rees, who organised the event, said “The Level 1 students at RNC are just starting to deliver fitness classes to members of the public as part of their work based learning. This has definitely helped prepare them for this competition as running the classes involves things like speaking in public, planning sessions and of course ensuring that you run to time.”


Fitness Manager Ben Harwood, who was a judge at the event, said “The competitors performed incredibly well and it was a really high standard which meant that the scores were very tight and there were very few points separating the top three.” The other judge of the competition, Fitness Instructor Leah Preston, added “I was really impressed with the competitors and it was a great learning experience for me too. It was an honour to be asked to judge the competition.”


The final standings for the competition were;

  • Bronze – Leon, RNC
  • Silver – Nathan, RNC
  • Gold – Dean, Hereward College


RNC student Leon Lawler, 20 from Carlisle, won bronze and showed great professionalism and sportsmanship throughout the day “I really enjoyed the competition and I’m happy with my medal. I couldn’t have lost to two better guys. I saw Dean’s assessment and I was so impressed, he absolutely deserved to win.”


RNC Principal Mark Fisher said “It’s been a really successful day, it was a great team effort from students and staff and we’ve seen a lot of great talent. Great results for RNC and we’re incredibly proud of Nathan and Leon coming away with silver and bronze.”


Today’s competition was part of the live heats where the highest scoring competitors from all the live heats will be invited to the UK final of the World Skills Show in November.  RNC students attended the Skills Show in 2016 where they were able to instruct classes in front of live audiences. Aaron Rees said “Last year was such a great confidence booster for our students and gave them real motivation to see the potential career pathways that are available to them within the fitness industry. I am really looking forward to attending again this year and I would be over the moon if Nathan and Leon were able to progress as competitors.”


If you are interested in finding out more about the College, call our student enquiries team on 01432 376 621 or email


Article written by Bik Lee, Digital Media Officer at RNC


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