Coaching and Athletic training are all about guiding and helping clients achieve their objectives, from building strength to perfecting their golf swing. As a specialist and coach, you engage individuals in strenuous physical training. As a trainer and coach, you bring the heat. Intensity training is beneficial for building strength and endurance, but it can also get you into trouble.
If your service is all about physical activity, you have to make Sports and Fitness business insurance a priority.
What is covered under an insurance policy for a fitness business?
Sports and fitness industry businesses can benefit in numerous ways from insurance. In most cases, general liability insurance is a necessity if a business wants to conduct operations. Physical injury is a problem on the athletics and fitness front, and for protecting your business’s financial condition. In managing a company's exposures, the safety of your staff and customers is a pivotal factor. Other risks and liabilities, such as property damage and cyber threats, may also apply to your company. Ensuring that certain insurance policies are up to date is an essential step in developing a risk management strategy. You need sports and fitness business insurance if:
- You provide professional services, advice, or instruction
- You own or lease space for your business
- You work at customers’ homes or offices
- Your business owns valuable property, like specialized fitness equipment
- You employ others
- You store sensitive customer or employee information on a network
- Your business facilitates high-intensity physical activity
Some professionals who should get Sports and Fitness Business Insurance are:
- CrossFit Instructors
- Dance Instructors
- Golf Instructors
- Hockey Coach
- Martial Arts Instructors
- Personal Trainers
- Pilates Instructors
- Self-Defense Instructor
- Surf Instructor
- Swim Instructors
- Tai Chi Instructors
- Yoga Instructors
- Zumba & Aerobics Instructors
Why is sports and fitness business insurance important?
Injuries and accidents can happen particularly in the sports and physical activity field
Business insurance provides financial stability against unfortunate accidents or injuries for clients who trust in your instructions. When a client is negatively affected as a result of your professional coaching, professional liability insurance can protect you from claims of improper or negligent instruction that causes injury. General liability can provide coverage for someone who has been hurt on your business property or from a product you sold. If an employee becomes injured in the course of performing their job, workers' compensation insurance supplies medical and monetary benefits for them.
A lack of insurance may cause your business's whole operation to come to a grinding halt with just one accident or lawsuit. If a business is not able to ensure that the funds are readily available to address damages or pursue a legal defense of its own accord, it may be compelled to sell its physical assets or file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
Owning or leasing a commercial space
Commercial Property insurance can ensure your business is compensated if the building becomes damaged or destroyed because of an insured risk, such as fire, tornado, vandalism, and theft to name a few. Business interruption insurance can reimburse your company for lost income if your company operations are disrupted by covered building damage.
If a natural disaster or a robbery occurs in your business, your company may not be able to recover financially without property insurance. Without insurance, you will be shelling out the whole cost of repairing damaged or lost property, and if your business has to shut down, you will have to pay out of pocket to keep the business open.
Workers Compensation Insurance may be required in specific states
Firms in most states are required to have workers' compensation insurance when the number of employees they have is over a certain amount. Even without the requirement, there's an inherent possibility of employee accidents occurring. This is why an insurance policy is a must-have. If an employee is injured while working for your company, you will be responsible to pay the statutory benefits for that employee with or without a workers compensation policy.
By maintaining workers compensation coverage, you can avoid major fines and penalties, and not have to worry about paying expenses when an employee gets hurt.
Recommended insurance for sports and fitness professionals
Business owner’s policy (BOP)
A business owner's policy (BOP) package combines commercial general liability insurance and commercial property insurance. It is generally cheaper to purchase than if those policies were purchased separately. A BOP usually includes coverage for other things, built-in, like employee dishonesty, theft of money and securities, computer equipment coverage, and so on.
Zumba instructors, personal trainers, and other sports and fitness businesses often select a business owner's policy for its universal coverage. Combining commercial property and general liability insurance in a single policy, a BOP pays for your property loss or injuries to your customers. Coverage provided by general liability are:
If a client or delivery person happens to enter your gym or fitness facility for a workout or delivery, there is an established possibility that you may be blamed for any subsequent injuries that may happen. If the customer documents the lawsuit, you will be liable for medical costs and any legal expenses.General liability insurance helps pay for:
- Medical bills
- Attorney's fees
- Court-ordered judgments
- Funeral expenses in fatal incidents
This policy does not protect employees or students in your organization due to workplace injuries or accidents caused by you. Workers' Compensation insurance covers your employees.
Customer property damage
General liability insurance covers losses or damages to your client's property resulting from your business. For example, a fitness instructor may cause a smartphone to drop to the floor during a client's workout, thereby incurring fees for repairing or replacing the device, along with legal expenses, if your client sues.
While running a group fitness class, you might inadvertently copy a competitor's slogan or another advertising element. Accidental injuries caused by advertising infringements are covered by liability insurance. This includes:
- Defamation, both libel (written) and slander (spoken)
- Copyright infringement
The liability portion of a business owners policy will cover legal defense and other expenses in case of a client injury or property destruction arising from your business operations. For example, it will respond to:
- Lawsuits related to customer injuries or property damage
- Lawsuits related to advertising injuries, such as slander
- A client at your fitness studio slides and breaks an arm
- An employee accidentally damages a customer’s cellphone
Coverage provided by commercial property insurance
Damage to business property
A BOP contains commercial property insurance that insures:
- Sports and exercise equipment
- Office furniture and fixtures
- Your building if you own it
- Computers, printers, phones
A BOP can be customized to address losses incurred by theft, vandalism, riot, theft, burglary, hurricane, and other perils. If a fire originated in an adjacent commercial space and spread to your practice, fitness center, or dance studio, this policy would pay to replace your property.
Included under the Commercial Property coverage of the BOP is business interruption coverage. If your fitness center or gym is forced to close because of fire or hurricane building damage, the resulting lost income could drain your business bank account. Business interruption insurance can help mitigate the financial loss that your gym's closing will cause, replacing your net revenue so you can meet your ongoing financial obligations.
Professional liability insurance
Professional liability insurance is also known as errors and omissions insurance, and it protects professional businesses from the negative effects of customer claims or lawsuits alleging that your negligence caused them harm.
An error made by your staff at any gym, Pilates studio, or fitness company could injure one or more customers. Reimbursement for medical expenses and economic losses incurred as a result of that injury may be negotiated to avoid a lawsuit. Fitness professional liability insurance can provide the legal defense your company needs to survive. It includes liability coverage related to:
- Client injury due to improper instruction
- Failure to deliver promised results
- Accusations of negligence
Coverage provided by professional liability insurance are:
Client injury due to improper instruction
Even if you're not at fault, an accusation that your instruction in a fitness class caused an injury may potentially cost a lot of money in a court case. If a pupil from your yoga studio claims that a pose injured his or her back, or someone in your Zumba class pulls a muscle, you may face customer injury claims. Defense costs, settlements, and court-ordered judgments, related to professional mistakes can be covered by professional liability insurance.
Failure to deliver promised results
A broken promise in your fitness business can have a major effect on your clients. The pursuit of a goal never reached might be grounds for establishing legal charges against your business. As part of your professional liability insurance policy, your defense related to lawsuits for covered incidents would be taken care of.
Accusations of negligence
Customers have unwavering expectations in terms of health and fitness. If your instruction or services directly harmed them and they had to miss work as they were hurt in the program, they could accuse your trainer of malpractice.
Your business insurance needs are unique to you and your operations. You may need other insurance types not even mentioned here. It’s advisable to openly discuss all aspects of your business and your concerns with your business insurance agent so they can recommend the appropriate insurance types to meet your concerns.
When you think you can’t afford insurance, think about all the risks involved in your business and how you will pay for the results out of your bank account, and insurance will sound affordable after all.