2024 – Cancelled!

Thanks to all those that attended and supported our first conference and the idea of running another one in 2024, particularly the presenters listed below, and all the sponsors.  We have put our conference plans on the back burner but in great news there is still a conference happening in Perth!  Head on over to the ExPRO Fitness site for all the details.

1. Global trends – FICs KEYNOTE

What has changed for our industry in the last 10 years and what hasn’t?
Let’s look forward 5 to 10 years.  What will the consumer expect and what do we need to deliver?

2. PT retention 2.0

The last few years has played havoc with both the exercising public as well as the model many PTs use to generate clients and income. Even before this many successful PTs set up their own studios, meaning gyms are in a constant circle of acquisition and training for new PTs.  Explore unique ways to both attract and keep PTs that is sustainable for both the facility and the PTs.

Your presenter: Richard Beddie

Richard is a highly sort after international presenter who has been on the board of ICREPS for 13 years,  is vice chair of IHRSA’s Global Health and Fitness Alliance Advisory Council and CEO of the Exercise Association of NZ.

He is renown for having his finger on the pulse of the industry both at a micro and macro level, for going above and beyond to support those in the industry and for utilsing creative and courageous solutions to help the industry forge ahead. In 2021 he won an award for his outstanding contributions to the NZ exercise industry.

Richard Beddie

3. Sleep – more regenerative than anabolic steroids! 

You can have the best training programme and diet in existence.  If you’re not sleeping you won’t recover, adapt, or get any result apart from getting more tired.  Optimising sleep is your key to optimal performance and gains.  Learn the science and field-tested techniques to help you and your clients sleep better.

  • Understand sleep science
  • Understand techniques used to measure sleep
  • Learn key techniques used to improve sleep with client examples and how to put it all together

4. Glutes Galore

Athletic performance, keeping injury free, and the ability to look buff in a pair of jeans are seriously compromised when your glutes aren’t working well.  Squats, dead lifts, and lunges are great for glute development, but we’ll show you more tools to get your glutes working well.  This session will help you create buns of steel for your clients.

  • The importance of glutes
  • Why glutes don’t work
  • Practical glute training techniques
David Liow

5. The plank is dead wood 

The plank has become the go-to exercise for core training. Discover why we think that it’s overused and overrated. We can do better – so much better. This session explores the concept of “core training” and how we can train more effectively. Come away from this session with a new  to bag of core conditioning exercises to add in your workouts.  This session will be confirmed in March.

Your presenter: Dave Liow – Winner of the 2022 NZ Educator of the Year Award

An exercise physiologist and a holistic movement coach in the Sunshine Coast, Dave holds a Master of Physical Education Kinesiology and Exercise Science. Co-owner of the Kaizen Health Centre and the founder of the Holistic Movement Coach Programme, Dave has a long history in elite high-performance sport conditioning and has worked with a wide range of world-class athletes being Head trainer for NZ Black Sox in two successful world series, the NZ Hockey Olympic and Commonwealth Games trainer and  S&C coach for NZ Titleist Men and Women’s Golf Academy.   He also specialises in working with clients with chronic pain and injuries and mentors and presents internationally to health professionals on integrating a holistic approach, and cutting-edge movement techniques into health and fitness.

Dave’s Website: HMC

6. Important dietary considerations for female athletes

Perfect for fitness professional who want to learn this information for themselves or apply it to those of their female clients who like to train hard, whether in the gym or outdoors running, cycling, swimming, etc.

Your presenter: Dr Sacha Fulton

Accredited Sports Scientist,  Athlete Preparation Specialist and Speaker.

Dr Sacha Fulton successfully secured a sports-based PhD scholarship in 2005 with Swimming Australia and the Australian Institute of Sport. Her PhD was titled ‘Performance Characteristics of Paralympic Swimmers’. Concurrently, Sacha was appointed as Physiologist for the Australian Paralympic Swimming team.

Sacha worked with the team in a professional capacity up until 2013 and accompanied them to the Beijing Paralympic Games in 2008 and the London Paralympic Games in 2012. In 2009 after the successful submission of her PhD, Sacha gained employment at the Western Australian Institute of Sport. She worked with the Institute for over nine years assisting in the athletic improvement of Olympic and aspiring Olympic hopefuls.

In 2018 Sacha established her own Sports Science consulting business in Perth, Western Australia. Sacha is passionate about sport and helping individuals unlock their potential and reach their goals. Sacha is equally passionate about life, driven to embark on challenges and adventures and committed to her own personal and professional growth.

Sacha is a surf lifesaver and a keen athlete herself having represented Australia at the IM triathlon World Championships in Kona, Hawaii and completing the Rottnest Island Channel crossing on five occasions. Sacha is an adventure enthusiast and is a keen traveller within Australia and overseas. Her recent travel adventures have seen her hike to Mt Everest base camp in 2017 and complete 1700km on foot over 62 days of the Camino de Santiago across France and Spain in 2018.

Website: Peak Preparation

Dr Sacha Fulton

7. Hypertrophy Training – a 2023 research update.

At FICs 2022, Dan presented a session on fitness screening which received rave reviews, most people rating it as ‘great’ or ‘excellent’!  Back by popular demand with a topic voted on by our attendees, Dan is back , doing what he does best, delivering the latest and greatest, most accurate research as it relates to hypertrophy training.

Your presenter: Dr Dan Jolley

Finalist Exercise Professional of the Year 2022, Dr. Dan Jolley holds a BSc in exercise science and an MSc in exercise physiology AND he has completed a PhD in educational psychology at Curtin University, looking at the knowledge, and sources of information, of personal trainers.

Dan also worked as a strength and conditioning coach in a number of sports, including cricket (with the Perth Scorchers), and Australian Football (in the semi-professional WAFL competition). He also represented Australia in American Football as both a player and a coach, and was the head of the strength and conditioning program for the men’s national team for the 2011 and 2015 World Championships.

Dan is currently the course coordinator for the Certificate III and IV in Fitness program at South Metro TAFE, where he has taught since 2011 and was recently a national ‘Accredited Exercise Professional of the Year Finalist’.

Dan’s website: Critical Fitness

Dr Dan Jolley

8. Vertical Leap – Jump Power

How to improve it and why.

Your presenter: Sean Connolly

Sean is Head Of High Performance at AAU Australia, High Performance Manger at East Perth Football Club and now the Strength and Conditioning Coach for the West Coast Eagles AFLW He was also the S & C coach for Perth Redbacks as well as a lecturer on personal training courses.
At the 2022 FICs conference Coach Connolly delivered a session described by one attendee as…
AWESOME!!!!, What a character! love to spend more time listening to Sean, session too short!!!( I mean that in a nice way!) SO interesting, so much to ask and LOVED the question/discussion time that he managed to squeeze in. BRILLIANT!
Sean Connolly

9.Structural differences in clients and how to program and test for them

Range of motion trumps the weight moved right? Well, not quite. Due to structural differences not all clients will be able to achieve what you can, because we in the fitness industry are the exception not the rule, and not all clients will be able to, nor do they need to be able to squat “ass to grass” or bounce a barbell off their chest to achieve optimal health gains.

Find out how to:

  • Get clients results despite limitations in range
  • Learn the difference between structural and functional limitations
  • Best assess the need for addressing limitations
  • Communicate inclusively about anticipation and manage expectations to clients

10.Creating unforgettable in-person experiences for clients

(This is an extra session which we will roster on if we have a full conference – watch this space ) In the world after Covid you now aren’t competing with your local area, you’re competing with the world. So you have to play to your strengths. 85% of people said they would pay significantly more for a better experience in a class than programming or fancy equipment. Brought to you by a previous winner of the National People’s choice fitness instructor of the year, Susan has the benefit to tell you tried and tested methods that continued to have her studio thriving when she was the most locked down state in the world by creating memorable connecting experiences.

Learning outcomes:

  • How to play to in-person advantages
  • The “Complete Studio Experience ProtocolTM”
  • Identify your Uniqueness and Unique point of difference to create your authentic voice
  • Learn to be a retention pro
  • Workshop your client experience right there and then!

Your presenter: Dr Susan Baxter

Susan has a PhD from the School of Physiotherapy, BSc (Hons), Precision Nutrition (plus if you name just about any fitness course, she’s done it. Susan was part of the official posing classes held by NABBA, and competed internationally at Worlds and Universes and has placed in all 20+ shows she has entered!

She’s been an International Optimum Nutrition athlete, studio owner in two countries, and featured in M2 Women, Iron Man Magazine, NZ Fitness, Fitness Life, Oxygen, Womens Health Magazine and REPs Magazine (Indonesia).

Regularly invited to present, most recently at the FitEx conference in New Zealand, she is also the author of books and scientific articles in peer-review journals.

In 2022 she presented at FICs and received RAVE reviews, inclusive of ‘My favourite session’ and ‘I could have done it all day’. Lucky for us, she’ll be presenting again in 2023.

Susan brings extensive knowledge to the conference, able to contribute on all levels from content delivery, to marketing. Keen to see all exercise professionals succeed, she is enthusiastic about FICs and has dived in to help put together some fabulous resources for our attendees.

Website: Sweat Equity

Dr Susan Baxter

11. Too scared to squat?

Many of your female clients are! Let’s dive deeper.

Your presenter: Brooke Turner – Winner of the AusActive 2022 Educator of the Year Award.

Mum of three, ocean goer, sun seeker, adventure enthusiast and lover of all things health, fitness and the great outdoors! Professionally, Brooke is an international health and fitness educator, speaker and writer specialising in exercise and nutrition for pregnancy and motherhood and helping women find a balanced approach to healthy, active living for long term mental and physical wellbeing.

With over 13 years experience in the health and fitness industry, Brooke is also a tertiary qualified nutritionist and exercise scientist, and trainer, who delivered two great sessions to our FICs 2022 attendees and is back by popular demand.

Brooke’s website: Balance Fitness and Nutrition

Brooke Turner

12. Hips – Let’s look a little deeper.

This session was delivered in 2022, but lots of people who wanted to attend it didn’t get the chance, and we got such great feedback about it that so we’ve asked Tim to present it again!

We all know how important hip stabilization is and how important it is to train those glute muscles and work with correct form. Maybe stretch and strengthen those weak and tight hip flexors. What happens when none of that seems to help?  When our client’s posture and performance of exercises plateaus below their expectations and ours? When they are still complaining of pain?

In this session discover the next step to helping clients train injury free and perform their exercises with great form. Sometimes with the hip it pays to look a little deeper. Whether you train high level athletes, seniors or beginners this session will help you to help them.

Your presenter:  Tim Barnwell

Tim graduated from Curtin University as a Physiotherapist in 2001. He has worked in a variety of clinical areas including spending time working in the United Kingdom, for the NHS at a variety of Trusts. Tim has been working at Southcare Physiotherapy since 2005. He became a Principal at Southcare Physiotherapy in 2013. In 2017 Tim was a part of the team that opened LifeCare Cockburn Central at the state of the art Cockburn ARC. He is the Practice Principal at LifeCare Cockburn Central.

Tim has a keen interest in the treatment of musculoskeletal conditions especially those related to sporting injury.  He has previously worked as the Head Physiotherapist for Palmyra Rugby Club and Cottesloe Rugby Club and qualified as an APA Sports Physiotherapist in 2012. From 2020 until 2022 Tim was the Team Physiotherapist for WA Netball team the Western Sting.

From 2012 to December 2013 Tim was the Branch President of the Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) in Western Australia. in 2021 Tim was re-elected to the Position of Branch President of the APA in WA. He is currently a Post Graduate Supervisor on the Curtin Sports Physiotherapy program and has recently taken up a position with the Physiotherapy Board of Australia on their Registration and Notifications Committee.

12. Group Fitness, Mental Health and Me: the things I know to be true.

  • My journey through anxiety, depression and PTSD to where I am now.
  • My work with women, and the reason for starting the Foundation.
  • The science behind the positive association of Group Fitness and Mental Health
  • The importance of gaining education around mental health, so as to better assist your clients.

This session would be aimed at anyone working in group fitness, and newly qualified fitness professionals.

Your presenter: Sarah Ford

Winner of the AUSactive award for National Group Exercise Leader of the Year 2022. Currently studying my Master of Medical and Health Science by Research at Edith Cowan University, with a strong interest in group exercise and mental health. I have completed my BSc in Exercise and Sports Science at Edith Cowan University. I am also currently studying for my Diploma in Counselling.

As someone who suffers from Generalised Anxiety Disorder, Depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), I have a first hand account of how powerful exercise is in helping mental well-being.

I currently run my own business, Sarah Ford Fitness, which is a boot camp style business for ladies only. This has been running for approximately 5 years. I have also, in 2021, started my not-for-profit, which is the Sarah Ford Foundation. The Foundation aims to help financially disadvantaged women to access fitness services for their mental health. I am a registered Incorporated Association with a charity collections license.

I have been a Les Mills Group Fitness Instructor teaching Body Combat, Body Pump and RPM, for 15 years, in gyms across Perth. I have completed international certification for all the programs.

You can find out more about Sarah at Sarah Ford Fitness

Sarah Ford

13. Kettlebells

How to incorporate Kettlebells safely but effectively into mixed ability group settings like bootcamps.

Your presenter: Deb Biggs

Deb is the owner of The PT Practitioner. She is educated to Masters level and has over 20 years experience in the health industry. She transitioned from nursing into full time coaching 4 years ago and is a personal trainer, qualified nutritionist and kettlebell specialist. Certified with StrongFirst (SFG II), she has coached hundreds of people to use kettlebells safely and effectively. Deb teaches hard style kettlebell technique and is passionate about making kettlebells accessible to people of all shapes, sizes, abilities and fitness levels.

Deb is keen to raise the standard of kettlebell use in the wider fitness space and enjoys educating other coaches and allied health professionals about technique and coaching skills with kettlebells.

Deb co-presented a Kettlebell swing session in 2022 to great reviews and we are delighted she is back.

Deb Briggs
Petar Djanis

14. Performance testing and choosing the right exercises for your athletes

  • Current trends in testing performance for athletes based on their sport.
  • Why do we need to test and what should we be looking for.
  • How to use the testing results to influence our exercise selection and assist the athletes in their sport
  • Load monitoring athletes

Your presenter: Petar Djanis

Petar holds a BSc in Exercise & Sports Science and Movement Science, GradDip in Clinical Exercise Physiology, Masters in Exercise Science (research) and is currently completing his PhD on Monitoring Load and Fatigue in professional football players in the A-League. Petar is the Head of High Performance at South Fremantle Football Club and was the Strength and Conditioning Coach for Perry Lakes Hawks as well as working at the WACA with the Male and Female Junior and Senior Programs.

Petar has been lucky enough to work across many different sectors within the health industry such as an exercise physiologist working with seniors, personal training general populations and as a strength and conditioning coach with a variety of athletes from amateur all the way to Olympic level athletes.

Petar’s passion is promoting and providing general populations with the same high-level coaching that elite athletes get.

Bodine Ledden

15. Exercising with chronic low back pain

This session will provide and evidence-based approach to prescribing exercise for people with chronic low back pain. There will be a focus on dispelling myths and misconceptions surrounding low back pain and removing barriers to exercise compliance.

Participants will gain an understanding of the neuroscientific implications of the language used when providing exercise for people with pain and how the words we use can influence pain intensity and exercise compliance.

This session will aim to remove the fear and negative belief systems that are commonly associated with chronic low back pain and exercise. Participant will gain a thorough understanding about how they can better educate their clients about the benefits of exercise and promote safety and confidence with movement.

Your presenter: Bodine Ledden

Bodine is a Myotherapist / Soft Tissue Therapist and Educator. He is the Assistant Director for Advanced Clinical Education and the Founder and Director of Physique Hip and Spine. Bodine has extensive experience consulting with musculoskeletal pain presentations in private practice. He currently divides his time between working in clinical practice and providing post graduate professional development courses in manual therapy for Allied health professionals nationally and internationally.

Bodine has developed course curriculum and been the Course Coordinator for the Diploma of Remedial massage program in Perth. With a passion for education, he is currently completing his Masters in Educational Neuroscience. Bodine has trained hundreds of manual therapist and exercise professionals in Australia and New Zealand in a range of modalities including Remedial massage, Dry needling, Myofascial cupping, Electrotherapy and Neurological assessment to name a few… along with providing webinars and online courses on topics including pain science, strength and conditioning and the clinical management low back pain and hip pain.

Bodine has a special interest in chronic pain disorders particularly in the lumbar spine, hip and shoulder.

Bodine has extensive experience working and travelling with AFL, NEAFL and WAFL sporting teams. He has worked with combat sports athletes at a local, national and international level including the Australian boxing team and numerous muay thai, boxing and mixed martial arts athletes.

John Polley

16. The integrated approach to chronic issues – including knees, low back and shoulders

Knee issues, back issues, shoulder issues – these are the “big three” barriers to exercise for so many people. Wouldn’t it be great to have a few tricks in your toolbox to move past many of these, and other ongoing niggles, so you can get on with enjoyable training sessions? JP has spent a decade creating an entire movement approach to enable exercise professionals handle all types of chronic movement problems. Join for this session and learn how to better understand these, their root causes and some techniques to move beyond them. You will never look at human movement in the same way after feeling the change in your own body, during this practical, and inspiring, session.

17. Who are you? The most powerful information you can know

(Extra Bonus session – This session may take place if we have a full conference – watch this space ) The question, “Who are you?”, seems like a simple enough enquiry. But how many of us can answer? In a business where often, YOU are your brand, it’s vital to know exactly what that means! Then you can authentically represent yourself and your brand in the crowded marketplace.

Your presenter: John Polley

Educator of the Year 2019, Exercise Association of Aotearoa, New Zealand, international presenter, mentor, writer and specialist in movement from the perspective of the ‘3 human dimensions’ – mental, emotional and physical. His passion for sharing information, practical skills and thought-provoking content is infectious. He loves to connect and help people find their unique pathway to realise the best in themselves. He has a natural, light-hearted and free flowing approach to education that people find engaging and fun.

Hailing from Perth, Western Australia he has worked in almost every role in the industry, from gym instructor through to studio owner. As a master instructor, he has provided education for freeFORM boards, Sandbellls and Throwdown, and currently holds roles with Power Plate Aus/NZ and ViPR Global.

For the past decade, JP has built a range of educational programs from mentorships to short courses, delivered face to face and online, and has a wide range of accessible education with leading education platforms around the world. He has also mentored industry leaders as well as working professionals.

As a writer, he has been a featured author for PTA Global, blog author for PT Academy Australia and has contributed to Fitpro magazine and the Fitpro podcast and is currently writing his first book about the interplay between the mind, emotions and movement. JP has also been interviewed by many industry leaders and associations for podcasts.

Website: The Next Level

18. Optimising running performance with and beyond running technique

Part theory, part practical, this workshop will address the risks and rewards associated with a modifying running technique.  Learn simple, effective, and safe strategies that help refine running technique for performance and longevity.

The practical component of this workshop will allow you to practice and experience pre-run activation exercises and running specific drills, all while experiencing your presenter’s, Scarlett Duncan’s, coaching strategies and cueing approach*.

The theoretical component will bring to light other important considerations to make before adjusting someone’s running technique.

The session includes considerations for masters’ athletes, peri-menopausal and menopausal women, anatomical differences, and RED-S. Scarlett is the first to admit she is not the expert in these fields but encourages coaches of any movement modality to become more informed to support and elevate their clients positive exercise journeys throughout life.

*The practical component will not require you to run. You can choose to participate or observe, or simply join in on the little-to no impact, low intensity exercises. Scarlett welcomes and respects any limitations you may have, and believes you’ll add value to everyone’s experience by being involved in any capacity.

Your Presenter: Scarlett Duncan

Founder of DOSE Running, Scarlett Duncan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Preventative Health Specialising in Exercise and Sport Science. She’s an Athletics Australia qualified coach, Pilates Instructor, Ultra-marathon runner and passionate coach.

Scarlett’s coaching is evidence informed, and her 10+ years of coaching and competing experience has allowed her to effectively translate and apply this to ‘gen pop’ novice and recreational runners through to sub 3 hour marathon, and ultra-marathon athletes.

Scarlett attributes her effective compassionate coaching approach to her personal challenges, including falling from being a strong competitive athlete to navigating a crippling autoimmune disease diagnosis at age 20. She rebuilt and regained her health to an extent that’s seen her podium in ultra-marathon events, run her successful business and fuel her appetite to continually learn from a broad scope of experts to elevate what it means to be a running coach.

Scarlett’s website: DOSE Running

Scarlett Duncan

19. Fitness Games

In this session we look at 20 games to create positive, interactive moments in your group training and one-one sessions, all designed to create a bond between your members and clients and your sessions, regardless of their fitness levels, and to have them going home raving about it all to others! Using minimal equipment you’ll learn how, why and when to incorporate these games and the underlying principle of them, into your warm-ups, cool downs and the main body of your sessions.  

Your presenter: Broni McSweeney

Having been a group fitness instructor and personal trainer in NZ for near on 20 years, Broni has delivered sessions at the NZ FitEx Conference and the YMCA Conference. She has had articles published in NZ national fitness magazines, written school and workplace programmes, been a regular guest on radio shows, rolled out a national fitness challenge for more than a decade used by over 200 personal trainers, and a been a lecturer in the performing arts and fitness departments across two institutes in NZ. Winner of the Fitness NZ Award for outstanding contribution to the industry and the Fitness NZ Lecturer Award she now lectures on the Cert 3 and 4 in Fitness at North Metropolitan TAFE.

Broni McSweeney

Some of the ideas on the table for this forum include:

  • Group training The benefits of getting into group training and how to do it successfully
  • Dangerous trends What problematical products and services are people gravitating towards and how can we combat it.
  • The future of fitness Take a dive into what the future holds, around technology and equipment, leisure time and the changing face of health and fitness goals and the factors that will serve to motivate people towards them, PLUS, what tech could we be using to make life easier.
  • Warming up protocol What should a warm-up consist of and why, how long should it go for and how can we measure its success.  The latest info around this essential topic.
  • Registration systems  Do we need them?
  • Recovery training How to promote a speedy recovery and ways to measure it.
  • Tips for fitting your fitness career into your life A discussion with some of our presenters and the incredible Renee Cabassi from Say Yes Fitness..

One more surprise speaker is on the way!

YAY here’s the schedule!    Everyone who has purchased a ticket will have a link emailed by Sunday April 23rd so they can book on in to the session choices.


Kick off at 7.45 am Rego, welcoming  address and keynote  Richard Beddie
Session 1
9.00am – 10.15am
Performance Testing  Petar Djanis Hypertrophy Training
Dan Jolley 
Dave Liow
Session 2
10.30am – 11.45am
Nutrition for the Female Athlete
Sacha Fulton
Fitness Games
Broni McSweeney
PT Retention 
Richard Beddie
Session 3
12pm – 1.15pm
Group Fitness, Mental Health and Me 
Sarah Ford 

How to incorporate kettlebells into mixed ability classes 

Deb Biggs
Glutes Galore
Dave Liow
Exercising with chronic lower back pain
Bodine Ledden
1.15pm – 1.45pm
 Meet Clare Gibson from Your Dayly in the member’s lounge and mingle with other attendees and presenters.
Session 4
1.45pm – 3.00pm

Too Scared to Squat
Brooke Turner
Structural Differences
Susan Baxter
Vertical Leap
Sean Connolly
The Plank is Dead Wood  Dave liow
Session 5
3.15pm – 4.30pm
Integrated Approach to Chronic Issues
John Polley

Hips – Let’s look a little deeper

Tim Barnwell
Forum and expert panel.  Running Techniques 
Scarlett Duncan
4.40pm – 4.50pm
Prize draws and farewells 
Early bird tickets

What did you miss out on in 2022?

Keen to be a presenter in 2024?

If you are keen to join us March 17th in 2024 please email hello@FICseducation.org before August 1st, 2023 with your bio, a great quality pic of your self, and your topic ideas.  We will then get in touch to fill you in on the details and advise what additional info we need.

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