Yoga teachers everywhere have a much higher appreciation nowadays for keeping their facilities extra clean and safe for students. With everything going on today, there’s simply a higher possibility for an unexpected event to affect your ability to earn a living in yoga. That’s why today’s series goes on a deep dive for the real benefits for professional yogis that have solid yoga teacher insurance in place.
An Increased Risk of Liability for Yoga Teachers
For anyone operating a business that offers services to the general public, there are unfortunately a number of different liabilities that can present themselves at some point in a career. Recognizing where potential risks may be and taking protective actions ahead of time is referred to as risk management.
Far from being a complicated process, risk management is an effective long-term success strategy any yoga professional can easily integrate into their everyday yoga practice. Yoga insurance is arguably one of the quickest and most far-reaching risk management strategies a yoga practitioner can undertake and it starts with understanding the different liabilities yoga therapists can face.
The three most common forms of liability for a yoga instructor include:
- General Liability: this liability is present for everyone who has a physical location as it relates to third-party claims for injuries and/or damages that occur in or around your place of business. General liability insurance is often called “slip and fall insurance” because these are the types of claims that can fall under this broad category. As a business owner and even as a sole proprietor or 1099 independent contractor, you have a responsibility to keep your teaching space relatively safe and free from known hazards. A student slipping on a wet floor and injuring themselves while walking into your studio could be an example of an event that might fall under the provisions of a general liability insurance claim.
- Professional Liability: yoga instructors help to guide students through many different forms of yoga programs out there. The types of yoga and skill level of the participants can help dictate the course of the instruction and the difficulty of the poses. One of the biggest variables facing yoga instructors lies in the physicality of the students. The level of fitness, any past injuries, conditions, or life-events such as pregnancy can all dramatically affect the way one student responds to a pose versus another. If a student pushes themselves too far and is injured, they may hold their yoga instructor responsible for failing to provide safe instruction. A claim relating to the actual services you provide falls under professional liability insurance.
- Product Liability: with threats to human health raising awareness about keeping facilities sanitized, the usage of cleaning products have risen dramatically. Product liability insurance is an apt protection because it provides coverage when a product you use causes an allergic reaction in one of your students. When an allergic reaction is severe, the student may incur thousands in medical costs, lost wages, or other expenses, which they then might say you are responsible for paying. Without product liability coverage included with your yoga insurance policy, you could be left paying these costs out of pocket.
There are other forms of liability that are present especially for yoga instructors as they host yoga classes, but the three above are by far the most common. Other forms of potential liability include if damage were to occur to a rented space, stolen and damaged equipment, and even identity theft. The best yoga insurance programs out there have adequate coverage limits for all of these to ensure yoga instructors have the best protection possible.
What Yoga Teacher Insurance Does for Your Career
We’ve discussed how having yoga insurance is an effective risk management strategy for helping protect a yoga instructor’s career, but what exactly does yoga insurance do? Here, we’ll cover the ins and outs of a yoga teacher insurance policy and what to look for when you compare yoga insurance programs.
2-minute Yoga Insurance Coverage Run-Down
First up is the big two - general and professional liability insurance. For these two common liabilities, beYogi members get up to $2 million for each occurrence, up to a $3 million individual annual aggregate. For claims related to product liability, members have a $2 million annual aggregate. Damages to rental premises are covered up to $100,000. If vital tools are stolen, this equipment would be covered up to $1,000 with a $250 deductible. All beYogi insurance policies also include $25,000 in identity restoration services if an identity theft occurs.
Comparing Yoga Insurance Programs
There are several elements to pay close attention to when comparing which yoga teacher insurance is right for you.
- Cost of Yoga Insurance
Price is an important consideration and rates are usually pretty easy to find on most carriers’ websites. However, always dig a little deeper to see if the base rate listed is the final price you’ll pay. Some programs charge extra if you practice a certain modality or even if you practice in certain states.
With beYogi, members enjoy coverage for well over 350 different health and wellness practices, so that they can be free to choose the best combinations in their classes. Our yoga insurance program also includes a provision for portability which says that it doesn’t matter if you move across state lines, from one employer to the next, or how you choose to conduct yoga teachings, your insurance coverage will follow you within all 50 U.S. states.
- Occurrence Form vs. Claims Made
Another important area to look at is a provision for the form of coverage. Yoga insurance will either contain occurrence form coverage or claims-made coverage. With occurrence form, you can file a claim even if your policy has long-expired as long as the claim event occurred while the policy was still active. Claims-made is the opposite. It says the policy has to be active in order to file a claim. This might seem like small potatoes but if it’s potatoes, then it could easily be millions of them.
For example, if your policy is set to expire December 31st and you hold a New Year's Eve yoga class, and then the next day on January 1st a claim is filed, with claims-made you most likely have no coverage for this event, even though it occurs while you had coverage. With occurrence form, you could wait months after the policy has expired to file this claim and it would still be covered. Because we want our yoga insurance easily accessible and a good value for the investment, we choose to only include occurrence form coverage with our policies.
- Shared Limits vs. Individual
It’s important to note whether a plan’s coverage limits are an individual aggregate or a shared aggregate as you compare yoga insurance plans out there. Beyogi yoga insurance uses an individual annual aggregate which means the limit you see on a particular coverage is entirely yours for the term limit. Shared aggregates “pool” members together so that the claims are added together towards the shared limit. This can be troublesome if other members use up the claims limits before you and your claim is left without adequate coverage. Any shortfalls would be up to the member to pay out of pocket.
- Benefit Programs for Yoga Insurance Members
Let’s face it, yoga insurance needs to be more of a value than just great coverage so many programs include member benefits with a policy. Since our mission is to help yoga teachers on their journey to becoming a better teacher and growing their business, we’ve made it a high priority to add as many valuable member benefits as possible including discounts on yoga products, discounts on yoga resources, discounts on everyday expenses, and even access to affordable health insurance options. To get the best deal on yoga insurance, always do a quick comparison of the different benefits the program offers.
With a beYogi yoga insurance policy members enjoy awesome benefits like:
- Free website for growing an online yoga presence
- $25,000 of Identity Protection coverage
- 35% off Ayurveda products from YouVeda
- 3 months free of yoga studio software from MomoYoga
- 30% off a YogiApproved membership
- 15% off YogaExpo tickets
- 10% off yoga legal documents from Conscious Counsel
- 30% off YogaClub box
- 25% off Metta Mats
- 30% off Gaiam
- 10% off yoga retreats to Tierra de Sueños
- 25% off Pretzel Kids membership
- Group rates on MetLife dental & vision
- Access to Telehealth without needing insurance with only a $10 co-pay
- Savings on everyday expenses like hotels, rental cars, UPS, Lenovo, Office Depot and more
With great coverage, benefits that pay for themselves, and a low, flat rate, yoga insurance is a far better value than taking a chance with your career by foregoing insurance. Even being under-insured from potential liabilities is extremely risky and could leave you footing the bill if a claim ever exceeded your policy’s limits. Always be sure you know just what you’re getting, for how much, and how it will apply in the real world with your individual yoga journey.
Getting Your Career Fully Covered with Yoga Insurance
When you’re ready to get serious about protecting your career, you should always look over all your options for yoga insurance and make the best decision possible for your unique situation. If any questions come up about how our coverage would apply to your yoga teaching, please contact our team. We have fully licensed agents available now to run through the entire policy and answer any questions you may have.