pt industry registration

pt industry peak bodies

In Australia, Recomp is the Peak Body representing the Body Recomposition industry; AusActive (the new trading name for Fitness Australia) and Physical Activity Australia (among others) represent the Fitness industry; and the Australian Strength and Conditioning Association (ASCA) represents the Strength and Conditioning industry.

These are 3 very different industries, with very different insurances which allow, and disallow, different practices with different groups of clients.

what do peak bodies do?

The primary, critical function of Peak Bodies is to make relevant, robust and affordable Professional Indemnity and Public Liability insurance coverage available to its members.

Peak Bodies define what tasks their members perform – their professional ‘scope of practice’ – and then negotiate with insurance companies to develop an appropriate insurance product. The resultant insurance costs a fraction of the price, and is orders-of-magnitude more likely to be honoured by the insurer, than any member could attain alone.

In most cases (except fitness) the insurance saving is far greater than membership/registration fees. (note: fitness insurance does not require any registration).

So while Peak Bodies typically provide a valuable, viable service, it is important to realise that they are all:

  • voluntary to join
  • not part of the tertiary and vocational education systems
  • not a government agency or part of government
  • not able to stop a person practicing in their field

ausactive vs recomp vs asca

Recomp, ASCA and AusActive (and Physical Activity Australia) represent distinctly different practices. Their respective ‘Scope of Practice’ documents define what a registered PT can, and cannot do; and, therefore, what the insurance covers. A more comprehensive list is below, but briefly:

  • The Recomp Scope of Practice broadly covers using intense strength (weight) training and sports nutrition, in both the general public and athletes, for the deliberate increase of muscle mass and decrease of fat mass, to any extreme and for any reason, including bodybuilding competition.
  • The ASCA Scope of Practice broadly covers developing the physical strength and conditioning of athletes for improved sports performance. It does not cover working with the general public.
  • The AusActive Scope of Practice broadly covers helping the general public engage in any safe, low-risk physical exercise to treat or prevent diseases from inactivity. It specifically excludes all sports coaching, including bodybuilding and powerlifting, and sports nutrition.

Many PT’s wrongly believe that they must register with AusActive, and get insurance with Guild (or Marsh), not knowing that:

  1. AusActive is a private company and PT’s are under no obligation to join
  2. AusActive explicitly disallows all sports, S&C and bodybuilding/recomposition coaching.
  3. Fitness insurance with Guild and Marsh does not cover any sports, S&C or bodybuilding/recomposition coaching

The goals, methods and scope-of-practice of strength & conditioning (S&C) and bodybuilding/recomposition completely contradict the documented goals, methods and scope-of-practice of fitness. This is why there are separate Peak Bodies and insurances for Fitness, Body Recomposition and S&C.

the right pt insurance

It is alarming that the insurance of many PT’s in Australia does not cover what they do with their clients. In particular, many of the most admired, experienced and competent PT’s who successfully coach clients for bodybuilding competitions typically have fitness insurance which absolutely does not cover those services.

Insurance products that cover bodybuilding/recomposition or strength and conditioning are very specialised, custom policies only available by registering with Recomp or ASCA respectively. They are practices not covered by fitness insurance.

PTs must choose the right registration and insurance for their professional practice.

which is right for you?

Fitness Australia
$275per 2 years
  • train general public: yes
  • train athletes: NO
  • bodybuilding training: NO
  • powerlifting training: NO
  • prescribe sports nutrition: NO
  • prescribe health nutrition: NO
  • heavy weights (non athletes): NO
  • heavy weights (athletes): NO
  • track & field: NO
  • rugby, boxing, netball: NO
  • other team sports: NO
  • other individual sports: NO
  • cardiovascular exercise: yes
  • core stability: yes
  • functional movement: yes
  • aerobics classes: yes
  • aqua aerobics: yes
  • swiss/bosu balls: yes
  • pilates, yoga: yes
  • general fitness (non athletes): yes
  • general fitness (athletes): NO
  • courses for cec points: yes
$100per year
  • train general public: NO
  • train athletes: yes
  • bodybuilding training: yes
  • powerlifting training: yes
  • prescribe sports nutrition: NO
  • prescribe health nutrition: NO
  • heavy weights (non athletes): NO
  • heavy weights (athletes): yes
  • track & field: yes
  • rugby, boxing, netball: yes
  • other team sports: yes
  • other individual sports: yes
  • cardiovascular exercise: yes
  • core stability: yes
  • functional movement: yes
  • aerobics classes: no
  • aqua aerobics: no
  • swiss/bosu balls: yes
  • pilates, yoga: yes
  • general fitness (non athletes): NO
  • general fitness (athletes): yes
  • courses for cec points: no

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