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When you work as a yoga teacher, there are many liabilities that could arise in the course of your work, from student injuries to property damage. An unforeseen event or claim can seriously jeopardize your yoga practice’s ability to stay in business. It’s a smart idea to obtain a comprehensive range of insurance policies to financially protect you from these hazards.
What insurance coverage do I need as a yoga teacher?
There are many types of insurance coverage to consider, but these policies are particularly relevant to yoga instructors and studios:
General liability insurance covers claims of third-party bodily injury and property damage. This is a key coverage for yoga teachers since they work with many clients. If you run a yoga studio, you could be held liable if clients accidentally injure themselves on your property. Many yoga instructors conduct classes or training sessions in a variety of locations, including offices or clients’ homes, and there’s always a chance that you might unintentionally damage someone else’s property in the course of your work.
General liability insurance also features a personal and advertising injury component that can cover third-party non-physical injuries and reputational damage from libel, slander, copyright infringement, and more.
If you work independently at multiple gyms or yoga studios, you may be required to have your own general liability insurance. Liability policies at these locations do not always extend to individual yoga teachers.
- Bodily injury: At your yoga studio, a student slips on a wet floor in the restroom and falls, sustaining a concussion. Your general liability insurance will cover medical costs and any legal fees if the student sues.
- Property damage: You are teaching yoga at the offices of a technology company and accidentally knock over a valuable sculpture, damaging it. Your general liability policy would cover the damages.
- Personal and advertising injury: A local celebrity attends one of your classes. Photos from the session in which the celebrity is visible are used in some of your advertisements. He sues for violation of privacy. Your insurer would cover the lawsuit.
Professional liability insurance protects you if your students sue you claiming failures or negligence in your teaching. Although you may take the right safety precautions for your clients, there’s always a possibility that someone could be injured or aggravate a prior injury while in your yoga classes. Even if the situation is out of your control, students could blame your instruction for the injury. Professional liability insurance can provide funds to cover legal fees and settlement costs if you are sued as a result of your professional services.
- After learning several new yoga positions, a student’s old back injury worsens. He sues you, alleging that you were negligent in instructing him to try the exercises. Your professional liability insurance would cover the lawsuit.
If you own or rent a yoga studio, it’s essential to make sure that you have coverage for the value of your business property. Commercial property insurance will provide funds to replace or repair your business property if it is destroyed or damaged. If an unexpected disaster damages your studio, it can be time-consuming and costly to recover from the loss without insurance coverage. Commonly covered perils include windstorms, hail, fire, vandalism, and water damage.
Commercial property insurance covers the following:
- Buildings belonging to or leased by your company
- Contents of the building, including furniture, equipment, and tools
- Property of others while it is under your care, custody, or control
Yoga teachers who work independently may not own expensive business property; commercial property insurance may be unnecessary for them.
- A severe storm damages the roof of your yoga studio. Your commercial property insurance would pay for the repairs.
For smaller yoga businesses, a business owner’s policy (BOP) could help provide a wide range of coverage in a single convenient package. A business owner’s policy combines the major property and liability risks that small businesses face, including general liability, commercial property, business income, and extra expense coverage. This type of package can help you save on costs, as purchasing these coverages separately would likely result in higher total premiums. Business owner’s policies are typically only available for small and midsize businesses that meet certain requirements, including a cap on revenue and number of employees.
- Workers’ compensation insurance covers employees’ medical costs and lost income if they suffer an injury or illness caused by their job. For businesses in the sports and fitness industry, this coverage is especially vital for workers as they may be involved in physical activity that puts them at risk of injury. Workers’ comp regulations are determined by each state, but almost every state requires businesses that regularly employ others to secure adequate coverage.
- Cyber liability insurance protects companies from financial losses related to hacking, data breaches, and other cybercrimes. This can be a helpful coverage if your yoga business stores names, addresses, credit card numbers, and other customer data.
- Business income insurance will reimburse you for lost income and operating expenses if your business is unable to operate temporarily due to a covered reason, such as fire, storm damage, or other property damage.
Pricing and Quotes
Pricing for yoga teacher insurance will vary based on the type of insurance coverage and the risk profile of your business. Insurers consider factors such as:
- Business size
- Number of employees
- Claims history
Businesses with higher risks will have higher premiums than those deemed lower risk. For example, a personal trainer with a history of frequent claims will face higher premiums. Premiums also rise as you increase the limits of insurance. Different insurance companies have different models for rating risks, so it is worth comparing pricing across different insurers.
In order to get an accurate estimate on pricing, it’s best to get a quote from a reputable insurance company. Below we’ve highlighted a few of our trusted partners who offer coverage for yoga teachers:
|Provider||General Liability||Professional Liability||Business Owner's Policy|
Business Insurance and Coronavirus
COVID-19 has had a major impact on sports and fitness businesses such as yoga studios, as many of these businesses have had to close due to state mandates and shelter-in-place orders. Many yoga teachers may be unsure about how their business insurance will handle this situation. It’s important to understand that you cannot purchase a new policy to cover coronavirus-related losses that have already occurred; insurance policies will not cover losses that have already been discovered.
In the majority of cases, business interruption insurance policies you have in effect will not cover losses caused by coronavirus. These policies typically only cover losses caused by a direct physical loss or damage, like a fire or theft. Some business interruption policies will include coverage for losses caused by “communicable or infectious diseases,” but this is rare.
How workers’ compensation insurance handles coronavirus cases varies widely depending on the state. If you have employees who contract coronavirus on the job, they may be eligible for workers’ compensation payments in some states.
If your business continues operating and a client or other third party sues you claiming that they contracted coronavirus after visiting your business, some commercial general liability policies will provide coverage, depending on your individual policy and the laws of your state.
Consult our FAQ on coronavirus and business insurance for more information.
When you work as a yoga instructor, it’s critical to assess the risks that your business could face and protect yourself against them. No matter how careful you are, there’s always a possibility that unexpected property damage or a claim from an injured client will emerge — with potentially disastrous effects for your business. Purchasing a broad range of business insurance policies can provide financial support that will enable your business to continue operating even after a costly disaster or lawsuit.