Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon Portland Community College

Group Fitness Leader, Career Pathway certificate

Students in an exercise class

  • Do you want to promote the health and wellness of others?
  • Are you ready to advance your career and develop your leadership and management skills?
  • Are you experienced in a field working with diverse populations or as a fitness professional, and want to enhance your skills and abilities?
  • Opportunities await!

As a group fitness leader, you will be part of the preventive health care team working in health and fitness clubs, wellness centers, public and private recreation facilities, hospitals, and/or corporate fitness centers. The EXS Group Fitness Leader Certificate may be obtained as a stand-alone certificate or in addition to the AAS degree.

In this Career Pathways certificate, you will be prepared to meet qualifications for employment as an entry-level group fitness leader and will apply knowledge and skills gained in the Exercise Science program when working with healthy populations in a group setting. Minimum of 31 credits. Students must meet all certificate requirements. All courses are contained in the Exercise Science AAS Degree.

Individualized coaching

As a Career Pathway student, you can get one-on-one support to help you access resources, services, and employment. You may also be eligible for financial support to help you with the costs of college.

Get connected

Award information

Degrees and certificates by number of terms to complete
Award Length Financial aid eligible Currently accepting students?
Career Pathway Certificate: Group Fitness LeaderLess than 1 yearLimited entry, see how
to get into this program

Learn more about Exercise Science and all 5 awards available »



The average full-time wage is $30,000-$50,000 per year, with typical entry-level wages of $25-$45 per hour.

Finish your degree

The Group Fitness Leader Career Pathway Certificate leads to additional certificates and degrees. Continue your education to give yourself more job opportunities and career advancement.

Is it for me?

  • Who: High school graduates (and high school equivalency). Completion of IRW 115 or (WR 115 and RD 115) and MTH 20 or equivalent placement test scores. If you do not meet all the placement recommendations, contact us for other options.
  • Where: PCC Sylvania Campus
  • When: Three terms

Program cost

Use the cost calculator to see the estimated costs. For more detailed cost sheets contact 971-722-4210.


Course listing for the 2022-2023 catalog year.

FT 100Emergency Response for Fitness Professionals1
FT 101Exploring Exercise Science Careers3
FT 110Injury Prevention & Management2
FT 131Structure & Function of the Human Body4
FT 180Exercise Science Internship Preparation1
FT 280Exercise Science Internship I4
or FT 280C Exercise Science Professional Project II
FT 280TPhysical Activity Teaching Experience1
or FT 280P Exercise Science Professional Project I
HE 295
PE 295
Health and Fitness for Life
and Health and Fitness for Life Lab
HUS 102Mental Health First Aid: Adult1
or HUS 106 Mental Health First Aid: Youth
or HUS 107 Mental Health First Aid: Older Adult
PE 181ABeginning Weight Training1
or PE 181B Intermediate Weight Training
or PE 181C Advanced Weight Training
PE 281Professional Activities: Weight Training2
PE 282AProfessional Activities: Group Fitness2
PE 287Professional Activities: Aquatics2
Choose 1 of the following Professional Activities courses
PE 283Professional Activities: Mind-Body Disciplines2
or PE 288 Professional Activities: Team Sports Training
Group Fitness Leader Electives2
Total Credits31

Next steps

See how to get into this program.Get started now

Not quite ready to apply?

We can help you get the information you need.