You can read also read our article that covers the 6 Conditions Commonly Missed Fitness Industry Award.
In addition, you can download a FREE copy of our Fitness Industry Award eBook that covers everything you need to know about the award, without the jargon which comes with a BONUS payroll processing checklist and classification breakdown.
This summary provides will provide you with a comprehensive understanding of everything you need to know about the Fitness Industry Award to ensure you have maximum compliance.
Please note that every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided in this guide is accurate. You should note, however, that the information is intended as a guide only, providing an overview of general information available. This guide is not intended to be an exhaustive source of information and should not be seen to constitute legal or tax advice. You should, where necessary, seek a second professional opinion for any legal or tax issues raised in your business affairs.
The Fitness Industry Award (MA000094) covers employers working in the fitness industry and employees who fit within the award’s classifications.
The Fitness Industry Award covers employers and employees working in the fitness industry across Australia, including:
- Fitness centres
- Fitness services or classes
- Group fitness organisations
- Weight loss control centres
- Aquatic centres
- Aquatic services or classes
- Indoor sports centres
- Golf driving ranges
- Dance centres
- Martial Arts centres
- Recreational camps
- Tennis clubs and centres
- Tennis coaching or classes
- Gymnastics services, activities or classes
The Fitness Industry Award also covers:
- on-hire employees - who are employees that are supplied to the employer’s client to work under them; and
- employers who provide group training services for apprentices and trainees engaged in the Fitness Industry industry.
The Fitness Industry Award doesn’t cover employers or employees already covered by the following Modern Awards:
- Amusement, Events and Recreation Award 2020
- Children’s Services Award 2010
- Cleaning Services Award 2020
- Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2020
- Local Government Industry Award 2020
- Registered and Licensed Clubs Award 2020
- Security Services Industry Award 2020
Types of Employment
To be classified as a full-time employee under the Fitness Industry Award, they must work an average of 38 ordinary hours per week.
To be classified a part-time employee, they must:
- work less than 38 hours per week,
- have reasonable predictability in terms of the hours they work, and
- receive, on a pro-rata basis, pay and conditions equivalent to full-time employees.
Before starting work as a part-time employee, the employer and employee must agree (in writing) on:
- the number of hours they will work each day,
- which days of the week they’ll be required to work, and
- the times at which they must clock-in and clock out of work.
The above agreement can be changed with consent from both the employer and the employee, but it must be done in writing. However, an employer must roster a part-time employee for at least 3 consecutive hours (excluding meal breaks).
Under the Fitness Industry Award, a casual employee is an employee that doesn’t fit into the full- or part-time categories and who works on an hourly basis.
For each ordinary hour worked on Monday to Friday, a casual employee must be paid:
- their minimum hourly rate, and
- an additional 25% loading on top of their minimum hourly rate to compensate for the lack of paid leave benefits.
For each ordinary hour worked on Saturday, Sunday or a public holiday, a casual employee must be paid:
- their minimum hourly rate, and
- an additional 30% loading on top of their minimum hourly rate to compensate for the lack of paid leave benefits.
However, the casual loading doesn’t apply to overtime hours worked (see below).
An employer must roster casual employees for at least 3 consecutive hours or pay them for a minimum of 3 hours of work each rostered day. In other words, even if the casual employee doesn’t work for three hours, they must receive payment for at least 3 hours of work.
Right to Request Casual Conversion
A regular casual employee is someone who is employed casually on a regular basis for at least 12 months.
In some cases, a casual employee can apply to have their employment contract changed into a part-time or full-time contract depending on the number of hours they regularly work:
- An employee that works an average of 38 or more hours a week over 12 months may elect to change over to a full-time contract
- An employee that works an average of fewer than 38 hours a week over 12 months may elect to change over to a part-time contract
The employer has full discretion to accept, in writing, or refuse the request. However, if the employer chooses to deny the request, it needs to be based on reasonable grounds, such as:
- to fulfil the requirements of the new employment type, there is a significant change to the number of work hours;
- the casual position may not exist in the next 12 months;
- the casual position may have reduced working hours within the next 12 months; or
- there is likely to be significant changes in the casual employee’s work days and times within the next 12 months that doesn’t suit the employee’s availability.
All grounds of refusal should be known or reasonably foreseeable.
Fitness Modern Award: Hours of Work
- Monday to Friday between 5.00 am and 11.00 pm
- Saturday and Sunday between 6.00 am and 9.00 pm
An employer must notify the employee of their rostered hours. If there is any change to the roster, an employer must notify the employee at least 7 days prior to the change, except in the case of an emergency.
An employee must not work more than 10 hours on any one day.
A broken shift is a shift that is split into two parts.
An example of a broken shift would be where an employee works one shift from 7.00 am to 1.00 pm and then a second shift that same day from 6.00 pm to 9.00 pm.
Under the Fitness Industry Award, employers can require employees to work broken shifts, provided that:
- the shift is not broken into more than two parts,
- the total length of each shift is not less than 3 hours (excluding breaks), and
- the combined span of hours doesn't add up to be more than 12 hours.
Rostered Days Off
An employer and the majority of the employees can agree to establish a system where employees receive rostered days off (RDO). Under the system, an employee may elect (with the consent of the employer) to:
- take a RDO at any time,
- take RDOs in part-day amounts, or
- accrue some or all RDOs for the purpose of creating a bank to be drawn on by the employee at a time mutually agreed between the employer and the employee.
An employer must record RDO arrangements in the time and wages record.
An employee may take time off during ordinary hours and work “make-up time” at a later stage, during the spread of the ordinary hours under this Award - provided that the employer has consented to this arrangement.Back to top
The table below outlines the breaks that employees are entitled to under the Fitness Industry Award, depending on the number of hours worked:
Hours worked per shift
Paid rest break
Unpaid meal break
Between 1 and 5 hours
1 x 10-minute break
1 x break between 30 and 60 minutes
Between 5 and 10 hours
1 x 10-minute break
1 x break between 30 and 60 minutes
Please refer to the Fair Work website for the Pay Guide for the Fitness Industry Award pay rates or access the 2021 minimum wages here.
Each year Fair Work undertakes an annual wage review before the first full pay period starting in July of that year, so make sure to check the Fair Work website for the correct Pay Guide.
Please also refer to the minimum wages for different classifications here.
If you aren't sure about the classification structure, we break it down in our Fitness Industry Award eBook.
The Fitness Industry Award offers the following allowances:
- Leading hand allowance: a leading hand is an employee who is placed in charge of two or more employees. A leading hand is paid a weekly allowance according to how many employees they supervise:
- Broken shift allowance: an employee working a rostered broken shift must be paid an additional broken shift allowance
- First-aid allowance: an employee who is rostered by an employer to be on first aid duty at a particular time must be paid an extra first aid allowance
- Meal allowance: if your employee is required to work more than 1.5 hours overtime, you must supply them with a meal or pay them a meal allowance.
- Vehicle allowance: employees required and authorised to use their own motor vehicle (car) or motorcycle in the course of their duties will be paid an allowance.
- Uniform and protective clothing allowance: employees required to wear uniforms will be supplied with an adequate number of uniforms free of cost. However, where the employer does not supply the uniform, they will be required to pay the employee an allowance to cover the cost of the uniform and the laundry expenses.
- When an employee is involved in travelling on duty, the employer must reimburse the employee for all fares incurred and for the time spent travelling.
- Sleepover allowance: where an employee has to sleepover as part of their employment duties, an employer must compensate them for the sleepover and for all necessary work of up to two hours duration during the sleepover period.
Search our database for all relevant allowances to your modern award.Back to top
A rate of 10% of an employee’s ordinary earnings must be contributed to a nominated fund.
The table below outlines the overtime rate applicable for all work done in addition to their rostered ordinary hours on different days:
Time of ordinary hours worked
Full-time and part-time employees
(% of ordinary hourly rate)
Monday to Saturday
first 2 hours
Monday to Saturday
after 2 hours
Breaks Between Shifts
An employee is entitled to a minimum 10 hour break between shifts.
Where an employee works overtime and their next rostered working day is less than 10 hours after they finish working the overtime, then the employer must either:
- delay the start time of their next rostered working day to allow a 10 hours break; or
- pay the employee at 200% of the minimum hourly rate until the employee has a break of at least 10 hours.
An employee is not entitled to be paid at the rate of 200% if they have only worked 3 consecutive hours or less before the break between shifts.
Time Off Instead of Payment for Overtime
It is possible for an employer and employee to agree (in writing) to take time off for their overtime, instead of getting paid the overtime rates.
Employees are entitled to take time off based on what their overtime payment would have been. For example, if a casual employee works 2 hours overtime, they are entitled to 3 hours time off (2 x 150%).
If the employee requests it, the employer must pay the employee for overtime covered by the agreement but not taken as time off; and any payment must be made in the next pay period following the request.
Employers may not put pressure on employees to take time off instead of payment for overtime.
Time off must be taken:
- within 6 months after the overtime is worked; and
- at a time within that 6 month period that is agreed on by both the employee and employer
Should the employee not take the time-off within the 6 months, the employer must pay the employee as per the overtime rates.
If the employee’s employment is terminated, the employer must pay the employee for the overtime work at the applicable overtime rate.
Maria, an employee at a local gym facility, worked 3 hours overtime on a Friday night.
She had agreed with her employer to receive time off as opposed to getting paid for her overtime hours.
According to the overtime rates, Maria is entitled to receive 200% of her ordinary hourly rate. So, her time off calculation will be as follows:
3 hours x 200% overtime rate = 6 hours time off
However, this time off needs to be taken within six months of the worked overtime and at a time that is agreed on by both the employer and employee.
The table below outlines the penalty rates for full-time and part-time employees:
Rostered day of work
Penalty rate for full-time and part-time employees
(% of the ordinary hourly rate)
Casual employees get paid a loading of 30% of their minimum hourly rate for Saturday and Sunday work.
Payment for Annual Leave Loading
Under the Fitness Industry Award, a rate of 17.5% leave loading on top of their annual leave is applied when an employee takes paid time off.
Employees must be paid the higher of:
- An annual leave loading of 17.5% of their ordinary pay rate; or
- The weekend and shift penalties the employee would have received if they weren’t on leave during that period.
If a full-time employee applies for leave between Thursday this week and Wednesday next week, he or she would typically work 8 hours of shiftwork on a Saturday too.
The employer must calculate 38 hours, including a 17.5% leave loading and compare with how much the employee will typically receive if they had been paid working across that period with the Saturday penalty rates.
Whichever of the two calculations is higher is how much the employee should be paid across that period of time, not for individual days.
The idea is so that the employee is protected from being paid less for going on paid annual leave.
Alternative Leave Arrangements:
- Leave in advance: employers and employees may agree in writing to the employee taking a period of paid annual leave before the employee has accrued the leave.
- Cashing out annual leave: employers and employees may agree in writing to cashing out a particular amount of an employee’s accrued paid annual leave.
- Excessive leave accruals: employers and employees may agree in writing on how to reduce or eliminate excessive leave accrual. An excessive leave accrual is defined as having accrued more than 8 weeks paid annual leave.
All public holiday entitlements are per the National Employment Standards (NES).
According to the NES, all employees are entitled to a paid day off on a public
holiday (or unpaid for casual employees), except where reasonably expected to
Under the Fitness Industry Award, any full-time or part-time employee required to work on a public holiday will be paid 250% of the minimum hourly rate applicable to their classification. Casual employees get paid a loading of 30% of their minimum hourly rate.Back to top
Termination of Employment
The requirements for notice of termination by an employer under the Fitness Industry Award are covered in the National Employment Standards (NES).
The National Employment Standards (NES) are 10 minimum employment entitlements that have to be provided to all employees.
All employees in the national workplace relations system are covered by the NES regardless of the award, registered agreement or employment contract that applies.
Notice of Termination by an Employee
An employee classified under the Fitness Industry Award must give their employer notice of termination as below:
Employee’s period of continuous service with the employer
Period of notice
Not more than 1 year
More than 1 year but not more than 3 years
More than 3 years but not more than 5 years
More than 5 years
The notice that an employee is required to give is the same required of an employer, except the employee does not have to provide additional notice based on their age.
If an employee who is at least 18 years old does not give the period of notice required, then the employer can deduct from wages due to the employee. However, no more than one week’s wages should be deducted.
If the employer has agreed to a shorter period of notice, then no deduction can be made.
Job Search Entitlement
When an employer has given notice of termination to an employee in terms of the Fitness Industry Award, the employee must be allocated paid time up to one day, so that they can search for new employment elsewhere.
The allocated time should be taken when convenient to the employee and after consultation with the employer.Back to top
Have You Considered Cloud Payroll
You can also download a FREE copy of our Fitness Industry Award eBook with a BONUS payroll processing checklist and classification breakdown to ensure you maximise your payroll compliance.
If this is all too much trouble and you'd rather automate the process like many of our clients, you can make the shift over to cloud payroll by engaging us to help you to transition from a manual to a cloud system seamlessly.
Here’s how cloud payroll works:
- Time and Attendance
Employees clock their time using an integrated time and attendance system that syncs all data with your cloud payroll software
- Live Timesheet Approval
No more manually entries or paper timesheet approvals. Supervisors and managers approve time and attendance on the go directly on the cloud payroll software.
- Automated Modern Awards Compliance
A collection of “rules” based on the Fitness Industry Award are implemented into your cloud payroll software that automatically calculate pay conditions (penalties, allowances, shift work, and more).
- Automated Payslips
Payslips are automatically generated that comply with the Fitness Industry Award
- Payroll Complete In Under an Hour
Never get it wrong. No back pay calculations. No inefficient manual interpretation. No data re-entry. Stress free pay days that take less than an hour to complete!
- Time and Attendance
We also offer an automated time and attendance solution called NoahFace which captures the start and end of shift times using an iPad or the NoahFace Go phone app. The data is synchronised with your payroll system, making payroll a breeze and compliance guaranteed!
If you’re interested in moving from a manual payroll system to an automated cloud payroll system, get in touch with us today for a free demo.