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Which IPAF Course is Right For You?

Which IPAF Course is Right For You? post image

IPAF are leading the way when it comes to keeping those who work at height safe and sound with their wide range of training courses. But with so many on offer, we realise it can be tricky to know which one is right for you! It’s no good paying for a training course that teaches you how to use a piece of equipment that you never use…

To help you find the right IPAF course for you, we’ve put together a handy guide including all the IPAF Categories and Courses, with information on what the courses cover and who they’re suitable for.

If there’s anything we’ve missed, let us know or contact us with your queries on 0800 069 9539 or email the team at [email protected].

What are the IPAF Categories?

IPAF courses are helpfully split into categories, based on the type of access equipment they focus on. Let’s take a look:

Static Vertical

As the name suggests, static vertical courses cover vertical personnel platforms that remain completely static when in use. Essentially it covers all equipment that cannot be driven while the platform is in the air. The IPAF 1A course falls into this category.

Static Boom

Similar to the static vertical category, the Static Boom category of courses covers stationary boom equipment, like self-propelled booms, trailers, and vehicle-mounted platforms, as well as booms that have outriggers attached to them. The IPAF 1B and 1B+ courses make up this course category.

Mobile Vertical

As expected, this course category covers some types of mobile access equipment. By mobile, we mean equipment that an operator can drive and steer while the platform is in the air. This category includes the 3A and 3A+ courses and covers mobile scissor lifts and vertical mobile personnel platforms.

Mobile Boom

Just like the Mobile Vertical category, the Mobile Boom category includes mobile equipment, rather than static types. However, it’s focused on self-propelled booms. To cover mobile booms, you’ll want to take part in either a 3B or 3B+ training course.


PAV, which stands for Push Around Vehicle, is a category of courses which revolves around access equipment that is manually pushed into position before moving vertically straight up or down.

IPAF Training Course Types

Now we know which categories cover which type of equipment, let’s take a closer look at each IPAF training course in more detail – providing you with all the info you need before you book your spot with us!


This one-day course falls into the Static Vertical category and is suitable for anyone looking to gain a PAL Card for the first time or renew their Card after 5 years. In the IPAF 1A Training Course you’ll cover essential Heath & Safety Regulations, controls, safety devices and warning alarms, inspections, operating techniques, and more to keep you safe on-site when using static vertical access equipment.


Another 1-day course, the IPAF 1B Training Course focuses on Static Boom equipment, is suitable for those new to the industry and anyone that needs to renew their PAL Card, and covers inspections, operating methods, hazards, Do’s and Don’ts and essential Regulations & Standards.


The IPAF 3B Training Course is also suitable for first-time applicants and those in need of a PAL Card renewal. This one-day course revolves around self-propelled boom equipment and cherry pickers, covering everything you need to know in order to comply with safety regulations, inspections and standards.

IPAF 3A & 3B

Combining the two courses together, our IPAF 3A & 3B Training Course explores both mobile vertical and mobile boom equipment. This 1-day course is great for beginners, or anyone looking to brush up on their MEWP (Mobile Elevating Work Platforms) knowledge.

IPAF 3A, 3B & 1B

As the name suggests, the IPAF 3A. 3B & 1B Training Course includes all the content of the individual courses combined into a 1-day course. The perfect introduction to MEWPs for first-time applicants, this course covers everything you need to know about the 3 main access equipment categories (mobile vertical, mobile boom and static boom).

IPAF Harness

A shorter, half-day course designed for anyone who is required to use or inspect harnesses and lanyards for MEWPs on-site. Please note you must hold a valid IPAF Operator or Instructor licence to take part in the IPAF Harness Training Course, and you will not gain a PAL Card upon completion.

IPAF MEWPS for Managers

Targeted specifically at project managers, foremen, and supervisors the IPAF MEWPs For Managers Training Course covers everything you need to know about how to safely and correctly manage various MEWPs under your control. Upon the successful completion of this course, you’ll receive a MEWP for Managers Qualification and an IPAF Certificate of Training – a very useful and often essential qualification for a number of managerial positions across various industries.


Our IPAF PAV (Push Around Vertical) Training Course is the perfect course for those who only ever need to use manual access equipment. Covering legislation and guidance, inspections, operating methods, hazards and more, this half-day course enables you to safely prepare and operate PAV platforms. Plus, upon completion, you’ll receive a PAL Card.

IPAF Training Courses at TSMC

Our fully accredited health and safety experts deliver IPAF courses at our training facilities in Leeds and Derby, plus we also provide on-site IPAF training across the country – so whatever your requirements, we’ve got you covered! Book your place on the next IPAF training course today or contact us for more information.