Personal Trainer working on shoulder of client to do an assessment safely and covered by insurance.

 

In today’s post, we discuss seven common questions that come up about fitness instructor insurance.

Insurance can sometimes get a bad reputation.

For instance, some companies sell overpriced policies, the coverage can be hard to understand, and sometimes you may not know why you need it. 

As a result, some fitness instructors have tried to cut corners and find unreliable alternatives. Most of the time this ends in bankruptcy, business closures, legal battles, expensive claims, and overall frustration for you.

That’s why having insurance is so important. 

Let’s dive a little deeper into the nuances of fitness insurance to answer some of your most common questions.

 

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What types of professionals need fitness instructor insurance? 

From private personal trainers to a yoga teacher at a local spa, every type of fitness instructor can benefit from having insurance.

For example, here are the biggest categories of fitness insurance most instructors fall under: 

  • Personal trainers
  • Yoga teachers
  • Kinstretch Instructors
  • CrossFit trainers
  • Dance instructors
  • Pilates teachers
  • Dietitians and Nutritionists
  • Aerobics instructors
  • Cardio trainers
  • Lifestyle coaches
  • Zumba instructors
  • Physique and performance trainers
  • Group and private instructors

 

The reality is, that you never know when an accident may happen.

 

Liability insurance is meant to help you pay for things like medical bills, legal fees, and damages when something does go wrong.

This could be someone tripping over extra mats you had on the ground or someone using broken equipment (even if it had a sign posted on it).

It can also be in the case of a client breaking an ankle during a class or using a supplement you recommend and they have an allergic reaction.

When you really start to look at all the risks your business poses, you begin to understand just how valuable insurance can be.

According to a study done by Insurance Canopy, the average cost of a fitness claim is $29,582.53.

With the average fitness claim being so much money, paying a few hundred dollars a year for insurance makes a lot of sense.

 

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Q: Will insurance cover me if I work online or out of my house?

Yes, there are insurance groups that can insure online and in-home fitness professionals. Even if you virtually work with clients, they still run the risk of getting hurt while following your instructions.

It’s convenient to work out of a home studio, a converted garage space, or even your own backyard. In this situation, if someone damages your property or is hurt there, the costs and responsibility all fall on you.

How about all the equipment you provide for a class or use to film workout videos? If something happens to it, you have to repair or replace it yourself. 

Having general liability, professional liability, and tools and equipment insurance on a policy can help you pay for most, if not all of these types of claims. 

 

Q: Can insurance cover me if I work at multiple locations?

If your coverage allows for additional insureds, you may have the ability to be protected in a variety of locations under one insurance policy.

Some of the places fitness instructors can work and be insured are:

  • Multiple gyms or studios
  • Spas and retreats
  • Corporate offices
  • Rented buildings
  • Community centers
  • Private studios
  • Events
  • Hotels
  • Schools*
  • Medical facilities*

If you are a school or medical facility, you will have specific requirements you must meet and certain types of medical professions may not be covered under certain policies. 

 

Having an additional insured means you are extending your policy’s coverage to another person or organization where you are doing business such as property management, businesses, gyms, or HOA’s.

These groups could be named in a claim caused by your negligence. 

If you are responsible for injuries or damages that occur because of your business, both you and your additional insured could be covered for the cost of the claim.

Many contracts or employee agreements require you to have an insurance policy that includes coverage for additional insureds for this reason.

Additional insured status cannot be granted to a friend or co-worker as an extension of your policy.

Each individual must purchase their own policy to obtain liability coverage. 

 

Kinstretch instructor Ian Markow tests a student's passive range of motion during hamstring isometrics.

Q: Does insurance cover any physical contact? If so, to what extent?

There are some types of physical contact an insurance policy may cover. These include basic activities you perform while helping a client or student:

  • Stretch 
  • Lift weights
  • Adjust posture or stance
  • Learn/demonstrate a dance move
  • Use equipment
  • Balance

Inappropriate physical contact, such as abuse and molestation, is not covered by insurance.

It’s best practice to communicate and receive consent from an individual before you come into physical contact with them to help avoid misunderstanding. 

 

Does a fitness waiver cover you as much as fitness instructor insurance cover you?

Q: Does a waiver cover you? 

Unfortunately, waivers do not cover you the same way insurance will.

A waiver does not have much legal standing (this can vary state by state) and cannot provide you with financial support for claims the same way insurance can. 

Waivers can be a great addition to supplement an insurance policy.

They help you establish understanding and clarity with a client so they know what to expect as you work with them.

If you do use a waiver, it is important to have it signed by the individual paying for your services (whether that is a physical signature or an e-signature).

 

Get insurance coverage while teaching Kinstretch and other fitness classes.

Q: What’s typically included in a fitness instructor insurance policy?

Most policies start with general liability and professional liability insurance, which can protect you from claims of bodily injury and property damage as a result of your business operations or services provided.

You can also find coverage options for:

Because you work with a range of clients, and possibly in a range of locations, every instructor will have their own set of needs or facility requirements that need to be met.

Be sure you look at what coverages your chosen location(s) requires and if your policy includes those coverages. 

Q: How much does fitness instructor insurance usually cost and how can I get a policy?

We have partnered up with Insurance Canopy for a great offer. You can receive coverage through Insurance Canopy for $12.50 a month.

You can save 14% just by switching to an annual policy for a one-time payment of $129. Their base policy includes coverage for general and professional liability with tools and equipment insurance added on. 

 

To buy a policy or receive a free quote, simply visit Insurance Canopy’s website. Here you can learn more about their coverage details and instantly purchase a policy. 

 

Once purchased, you will have 24/7 online access to all of your insurance documents.

This means you can manage your coverage, add additional insureds, print a Certificate of Insurance, or file a claim at any time from anywhere for any reason.

 

Ian Markow does not worry when teaching Kinstretch because he has fitness instructor insurance.

 

What are you waiting for? It’s time to get covered! Join thousands of fitness professionals and start protecting yourself and your business with Insurance Canopy.

 

Disclaimer: Markow Training Systems receives compensation from Insurance Canopy when readers use the services presented in this blog post. 

 

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