Fitness Health and Exercise HND

UCAS code 006C

What is special about this course?

The HND Fitness, Health and Exercise is designed to build on the HNC award and develop your skills and knowledge. You will advance your study of fitness, health and exercise activities and related areas, specifically increasing awareness of the interdisciplinary nature of fitness and health and developing an understanding of the need to involve participants fully in their own fitness and health development.

You will be able to give ownership of programmes to individuals, enabling optimum customer service and developing and applying transferable exercise skills with specific populations.

Special features

  • On completion of this course you will also be eligible to apply to enter the Register of Exercise Professionals (REP) at Level 3, therefore better preparing you for employment in the industry
  • You will have the opportunity to make use of sport and fitness facilities across the region


We offer modern student accommodation at a number of our locations.

Entry requirements

  • 2 Scottish Highers at grade C or above OR
  • 2 A Levels at grade D or above
  • Successful applicants will be required to complete a PVG Disclosure Check and become PVG Scheme Members in order to undertake this course
  • For Year 2 entry, all applicants must have achieved HNC Fitness, Health and Exercise Group Award (15 credits) and be accepted as a Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) scheme member through your campus system. Placements cannot be started without this
  • Prospective students without the standard entry requirements are encouraged to apply and will be considered on an individual basis

Access routes

Year 1 - HNC

Mandatory units are:

  • Exercise and fitness: health and safety management 
  • Exercise physiology and anatomy
  • Exercise principles and programming 
  • First aid for sport and fitness
  • Health screening
  • Nutrition for fitness, health and exercise
  • Working safely and effectively with clients
  • Fitness, health and exercise: graded unit 1

Option units include:

  • Plan, teach and evaluate group exercise with music sessions 
  • Plan, teach and evaluate gym based exercise sessions
  • Inclusive sports provision: an introduction
  • Work experience
  • Psychology of sports coaching
  • Exercise and fitness safety management
  • Manage a sports or fitness related event
  • Physical activity for children
  • Plan, teach and evaluate group exercise session
  • Swimming pool lifeguard: skills and practice

Option units available may vary depending on study location, for more information contact your chosen campus

Year 2 - HND

Mandatory units are:

  • Applied exercise prescription for specialist population groups 
  • Applied fitness assessment for specialist population groups 
  • Applied nutrition assessment and prescription 
  • Current exercise trends 
  • Fitness, health and exercise: graded unit 2 
  • Getting started in business

Option units may include:

  • Core strength and posture
  • Deliver personal training sessions
  • Metabolic considerations for personal trainers
  • Planning and management of personal training
  • Research in sport and fitness: an introduction
  • Flexibility training
  • Mechanics for the health and fitness professional

Option units available may vary depending on study location, for more information contact your chosen campus

How will I study my course?

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update

Our priority is to provide a safe learning environment for all students and staff. We will continue to review government guidance as lockdown measures shift over the next few months and will inform you of any further changes to the information provided below about your course. You will study the course through our blended learning approach. In semester one, September 2020, the theory elements will mainly be delivered mainly online through a combination of video conference seminars, tutor-supported study and self-directed study using the university's virtual learning environment. You will also have the opportunity to do an online induction at the start of the course. On-campus activities, practical sessions and placements will be introduced in line with the developing Scottish Government public health measures and guidance, including social distancing.
  • Full-time
  • Part-time (structured)
  • Part-time (unstructured)
  • You will study by way of face-to-face lectures and tutorials in the classroom, and practical work in college sports facilities

How long will my course last?

  • Full-time: 2 years
  • Part-time (structured): 4 years
  • Part-time (unstructured): 4 years +

Where can I study my course?

  • Inverness College UHI
  • Perth College UHI

Start date

  • September


For students normally domiciled in Scotland or the European Union/EEA (outside of the UK) and with a term time address in Scotland, the following fees apply:

Higher National Awards (HNC, HND)2019-202020-21
Full-time per year £1,285 £1,285
Part-time (per HN credit) £86 £86

Rest of UK students

For students normally domiciled in the rest of the UK (England, Wales and N. Ireland, including Channel Islands and the Isle of Man) and with a term time address in Scotland studying this course, the following fees apply:

Higher National Awards (HNC, HND)2019-202020-21
Full-time per year £6,720 £6,720
Part-time (per HN credit) £448 £448

Fees are payable in advance each academic year unless otherwise agreed.

There are a number of funding options available to UK and EU students to help you pay for your studies and your cost of living while studying.

International students

For students who do not normally reside in the UK or European Union and with a term-time address in Scotland, the following fees apply:

Higher National Awards (HNC, HND)2019-202020-21
Full-time per year £6,855 £7,020
Part-time (per HN credit) £457 £468

Part-time study is not open to international student requiring Student Route visa sponsorship to study in the UK.


External scholarships and financial support may be available. Contact the relevant university partner college for more information.

What can I do on completion of my course?

On completion of your course you might want to consider the following employment opportunities:

  • Fitness instructor
  • Gym supervisors/managers
  • Community activity development
  • Active schools coordinator

Opportunities also exist within the NHS and private training providers, as well as self-employment.

Can I progress into further study?

On successful completion of the HND Fitness, Health and Exercise, you may be able to progress to the third year of the BSc (Hons) Sport and Fitness or the BA (Hons) Sports Management.

Is there more information available online?

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Apply for Fitness Health and Exercise HND

I want to start in Aug/Sep 2021

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at the University of the Highlands and Islands. We operate a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of gender, age, disability, ethnicity and socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.