Reasons for medical referral of your client

Only a few clients in your lifetime may need medical referral, so you need to ensure you know the signs of when and why they must be referred.

Ultimately, you refer clients when their needs are out of your scope of practise, or when training them may have a greater risk on their health than the benefit of training. So, what are the reasons for medical referral?

Health Screening Response

If your client answers yes to any of the questions on the medical form before exercise you cannot train them. They must see their doctor and get a letter stating they are of health to be trained by you.

Risk Factors

There can be several risk factors for clients with cardiovascular disease (CVD). These clients may have issues such as inactivity, high blood pressure, smoking, obesity, age, stress and diabetes to name a few issues. These clients need to be taken care of and trained in a separate way from the norm, after they have gained permission off their GP.


Clients with injuries or past injuries depending on the severity may need clearing off a GP in order to train with yourself. You also need to ensure you pick exercises which won’t aggravate the injury. 

Doubt or uncertainty

If you have any doubt or uncertainty over a client’s health get them out, do not train them as you may make their health condition worse.

Client doubt or uncertainty

If your client has any doubt or uncertainty around their own health advise them to go and see their GP. If they believe there’s something wrong, they may not put in 100%, which will put them off achieving their goals.


Any client over the age of 69 who doesn’t complete regular activity should be assessed by their GP beforehand.

Ensure that you are always vigilant, training a client incorrectly could provide a negative effect on their health and lead you open to an insurance claim.

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