Group Fitness Instructor Prep Course

Share your passion for fitness

Becoming a group fitness instructor is a life-changing career that carries both privileges and responsibilities. In the Group Fitness Instructor Prep Course, you will learn how create innovative fitness classes that will inspire the Purdue campus community to move. This course will help transform your desire to teach into knowledge and an inspired skill set so that you can deliver an incredible class experience every time you teach.

Course Dates

Spring Semester

  • Tuesday/Thursday, 3–5:00pm
  • (12 weeks, 60 hours)


This course is free to all Purdue students, however, in order to provide the appropriate level of instruction, space is limited. Therefore, we ask all applicants to submit a Group Fitness Instructor Course application form. Selected applications will be invited for a spot in this course. Our current application process is closed. Check back on September 28th for the application for Spring 2019.

Course Structure

This 12-week course is designed to give participants the knowledge and understanding necessary to prepare for the American Council on Exercise (ACE) Group Fitness Instructor Certification Exam and become effective group fitness instructors. Participants will also have the opportunity to audition for a Group Fitness Instructor position. However, employment is not guaranteed just because you completed the course.  All registered participants will receive a discount on ACE study materials and the ACE certified Group Fitness Instructor Exam.

Selection Process

Prep Course Selection Process

  • Submit GFI-Prep Course Application by Deadline

Prep Course Completion Requirements

  • Purchase a semester Group X Pass
  • Attend 22 of 24 GFI Prep Course classes
  • Receive a grade of 80% or higher on written exam
  • Receive a grade of 80% or higher on practical exam (Instructor Showcase)

Mentor Program Selection Process

  • Upon successful completion of the spring semester GFI-Prep Course, top candidates will be hired to join the Purdue Recreation & Wellness Group Fitness Instructor Team. 
  • New instructors will complete a mentorship program and begin team-teaching right away, working alongside experienced instructors, who can immediately begin to mentor you through a process of continuous and incremental improvement.

Mentor Program Completion Requirements

  • Candidates will be assigned a mentor and complete team teaching for approximately 6-8 weeks.
  • Candidates will audition to teach specific formats.
  • Individuals will be paired with mentors who have teaching experience in select formats.

A Word of Caution

  • Becoming a Group Fitness Instructor can be a rewarding part of the academic experience; it is also a time and energy consuming affiliation. 
  • Individuals should enter the training program knowing that in order to succeed you must commit time for practice and development. 
  • Only the most qualified candidates are promoted to the Instructor Team. 
  • At times students have found that other activities such as clubs, teams, and sororities often conflict with course requirements. Before beginning the course, consider carefully your current involvement in extra-curricular activities.

Course Instructor

This course will be co-taught by Assistant Director of Group Fitness and Instructional Programs at Purdue Recreation & Wellness along with the Graduate Assistant.


For more information regarding this course, please contact Jenny Strickland, Assistant Director of Group Fitness and Instruction at 765.496.6234 or by email at

Purdue University, Recreation & Wellness, West Lafayette, IN 47907 (765) 494-3109

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