NHS Careers > Explore by career > Wider healthcare team > Careers in the wider healthcare team > Clinical support staff > Health trainer

Health trainer

Health trainers help people to develop healthier behaviour and lifestyles in their own local communities. They offer practical support to change their behaviour to achieve their own choices and goals. 

The exact role will depend upon the needs of the community in which they work, but typically would involve encouraging people to:

  • stop smoking
  • participate in increased physical activity
  • eat more healthily
  • drink sensibly
  • practice safe sex

The ability to motivate people is therefore a key part of the work of a health trainer.

Health trainers need to be able to work with existing community groups and be involved in supporting new groups. This might involve networking with other agencies and organisations.

Explaining how a healthy lifestyle, can benefit an individual or group, is an important part of this type of work. This might be done verbally or through providing information in a written format, or it might mean referring individuals to other agencies or organisations for further support or resources.

Health trainers tend to work in a community setting and are usually employed by a primary care organisation.

Entry requirements

Each post will have slightly different entry requirements, but typically, applicants will need:

  • experience of working in a paid or voluntary capacity with residents and/or community groups
  • ability to apply knowledge and skills in practice
  • good levels of numeracy and literacy

It can be an advantage to have experience and/or qualifications in areas such as nutrition, weight management, understanding and encouraging healthy lifestyles, instructing on exercise or using a gym.

Some posts may require the ability to speak in specific languages.

Pay for health trainers

Typically, a health trainer would be on around Band 3 of the Agenda for Change pay system.

Further information

For more information about working as a health trainer, contact your local primary care organisation.

Job vacancies appear in a range of places, including the NHS Jobs website.

Health trainers are a part of the wider team of staff working in public health. For more information about opportunities in the public health arena, visit the PHORCAST website.