Gym insurance covers a gym’s elevated risks where liability increases when people engage in strenuous cardio and weightlifting programs. Due to this higher business risk, many commercial insurance providers offer business property coverage but may refer you to specialty liability providers. Annual costs start around $1,000 for property and $1,500 for general liability.
There are so many risk categories and exclusions when it comes to gym insurance because of the nature of the business. Sift through your needs and get the right direction from The Hartford’s specialized agents versed in gym risks. Get a free, no-obligation quote.
Top Gym Insurance Providers
Local gyms focusing on individual and small group training sessions
Growing gyms with a variety of services and classes
Small gyms where patrons exercise without an instructor
Gyms looking for low-cost coverage and quick access to certificates of insurance
Personal trainer policies reasonably priced for gym independent contractors
Gym insurance provides specialized coverage for the risks gym owners face in the course of business. These national insurance providers understand the unique needs of gym owners and help navigate policy needs quickly, getting owners to the right policy for the right price.
Consider the size of your gym and what classes, machines, and training aids are utilized with your clientele when shopping for business insurance. Buy coverage based on your existing revenue but plan on reviewing policies annually to confirm any increases in revenues, client numbers, and new workout programs or equipment.
The Hartford is the right choice for local gym owners, where small groups and individual training sessions are the majority of daily practices. Properly supervised workouts reduce the risk of injury and accidents. The Hartford specializes in policies where business owners take extra measures to reduce claims, as is the case with supervised workouts.
The Hartford offers very comprehensive business property policies and workers’ compensation policies for gyms. On top of the business’s property, these policies cover signs, business interruption, and loss of use during a loss. The Hartford will refer you to a trusted partner for general liability.
K&K Insurance Group is a great choice for gym businesses that are growing in size or multiple locations. It also can insure multiservice gym and fitness studios for a reasonable price. By looking at unusual business categories, K&K Insurance is well-versed to provide you insights on the coverage you need for nuances in your business that no one else might be thinking about.
K&K Insurance Group offers dynamic plans for gyms of all sizes across the country. Once the application process is complete, you’ll be paired directly with an underwriter to make sure you have the right coverage from day one of the policy.
Sports Fitness Insurance Corporation
Sports Fitness Insurance specializes in merging the needs of fitness professionals and gym businesses with the right insurance where workout supervision is limited. Because Sports Fitness Insurance Corporation only handles risk in the athletic and fitness community, it can underwrite and price policies better where the risk might be slightly higher.
Sports Fitness Insurance Corporation focuses on gyms, fitness trainers, and fitness studios. It serves a niche with affordable policies combined into one easy-to-understand policy. It is easy to work with when adding new classes or expanding.
CoverWallet is a great choice for gyms and fitness centers looking for easy, quick and affordable insurance coverage. It offers tiered plans for your business, dependent on your needs. For example, you can opt for General Liability insurance for coverage against things like claims from bodily and personal injury, or upgrade and get coverage for those things in addition to equipment breakdown, lost business income, and more.
CoverWallet is an online platform designed to help you quickly compare multiple quotes from top carriers on your own and find a low-cost option that works for your business. The platform is well-known for being easy to use and simplifies much of the information so that small business owners understand how to choose the proper coverage.
Insurance321 is the right provider for independent contractors working at gyms and fitness studios. Affordable personal trainer policies make it easy for gym independent contractors to provide additional insured and certificates of insurance to gym owners.
Insurance321 is an online insurance broker that helps gym owners protect themselves from uninsured trainers. Insurance321 strives to make buying and managing a business insurance policy simple. The subsequent claims process is a relief for stressed business owners who need to get back to running a business rather than managing a claim.
What Gym Insurance Is
Gym insurance is a combination of several types of policies that include gym general liability, building tenant insurance, property coverage, and workers’ compensation when necessary. Landlords may require owners to get building tenant insurance, but if the gym owner doesn’t add on other policies, they are exposing their personal business interests.
There are variations to gym insurance, depending on the type of facility you have. A yoga studio is not considered as much of a risk as a Pilates studio. Similarly, a fitness location with exercise machines has less risk than one with free weights. The more elements your gym offers regarding fitness, the higher your risk. This includes offering massage therapy, youth fitness lessons, martial arts training, and nutritional supplement sales.
Who Needs Gym Insurance
A gym owner who has a physical facility needs gym insurance that is underwritten specifically for the types of equipment and classes the gym provides. Gym owners need to protect property so that they can get back to business quickly after a fire, theft, or vandalism. Additionally, gym owners need to protect themselves from lawsuits from patrons who get hurt while at the gym.
Gym owners need gym insurance if they:
- Lease space
- Buy a building
- Maintain equipment and workout machines
- Offer group classes
- Provide private training and consultation
Every business faces the possibility of a claim. However, the nature of the physical activity and the equipment in a gym makes it more prone to risk. This is why every gym owner should review the various types of insurance offered for gyms and any ancillary types of workout facilities to make sure there are no gaps in coverage.
What Gym Insurance Covers
Liability insurance is just one type of coverage that gym owners need to protect themselves properly. Every gym owner needs to consider the various accidents that can happen in their gym, potential damage to the building, and injuries to employees. More than one policy is usually required to cover the various risks of owning a gym.
General Liability Insurance
General liability insurance covers accidental injuries and damage to property, such as trip-and-fall accidents. Beyond accidental third-party bodily injury and property damage, general liability protects a gym owner in advertising injury claims, such as libel. Most general liability policies also include coverage for damage to rented premises.
While liability policies may start with $300,000 limits, most gyms should consider at least $1 million per occurrence coverage with an aggregate of $2 million. That means an injured party can get up to $1 million, and the gym can make payments to various clients up to $2 million annually.
Building Property Insurance
Building property insurance is often combined with business property. The building property covers the leased space where your gym is held and protects the landlords’ building. Landlords will often require property insurance to cover the building. Gym owners should also make sure to include business contents such as exercise mats, weights, and machines.
If one of the bathroom pipes burst and floods the unit or surrounding units, the business property policy pays for repairs. Business property is the exercise equipment, scale, training tools, and office administrative systems used to run the business. Some policies even cover equipment breakdown.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance
Workers’ compensation insurance covers employees who get hurt while working for you. It pays medical expenses, lost wages, vocational rehabilitation, and pertinent survivor benefits when employees die in a workplace accident.
Workers’ comp premiums are partially based on employee risk. For instance, If you have front desk clerks who don’t train people, they cost less to insure than your trainers. If your trainers are independent contractors, you most likely don’t have to cover them. However, you may want to require them to carry insurance and add your gym as an additional insured to release any liability from the trainer’s actions.
Professional Liability Insurance
Professional liability insurance, also called errors and omissions (E&O), is different from general liability insurance. It protects gyms in lawsuits where a client says they were given the wrong advice or training program by covering your legal defense.
For example, you could be sued if someone with a heart issue suffers a heart attack in your aerobics class. In that situation, professional liability insurance typically pays any legal costs if a claim is made against the gym, including any settlement or judgments if your gym is found liable. Most policies also cover your employees, but not independent contractors working in your facility.
There are so many facets to business insurance needs. One gym might not need the same coverage as another. Others may elect higher coverage for the once-in-a-lifetime accident. Work with your insurance agent to determine your real risks, the ability to withstand them, and how insurance will protect you and your business.
Medical Payments Coverage
Medical payments are a component of general liability insurance policies or business owner’s policies that pay third-party injury expenses. When it comes to gym insurance, this is important to prevent bigger claims and lawsuits if a person working out is injured while exercising in the gym.
An innocent ankle twist needing an X-ray would be paid through medical payments reducing the likelihood of a lawsuit. Making sure you elect medical payments and have a reasonable limit, such as $5,000, to handle small claims saves gym owners from small claims developing into major costs.
What Gym Insurance Doesn’t Cover
Gym insurance can have a lot of exclusions. Coverage specifics vary among carriers and are contingent on the policy you purchased. If you have a gym that is already insured and plan to expand, check with your insurance agent before you do so. You could be violating the terms of your policy that leads to claims denial.
Typical exclusions from insurance for gym owners include:
- Unlawful actions include false statements and guarantees: Saying, “You will have a body fat ratio drop to 3% in 30 days―guaranteed.”
- Sales of supplements and private labeled products: Selling any vitamins, nutritional supplements, including protein shakes and supplements, to gym members.
- Programs for minors: Allowing children under the age of 18 may have restrictions or exclusions.
- Additional services such as physical therapy and massage: This places you in a different classification, such as a medical therapy provider for physical therapy programs.
- Martial arts training facilities: Martial arts have higher injuries due to sparring, and the various tumbling required and are in a different class.
If your gym offers more than basic fitness, you may need a different policy under the fitness insurance classification. Dance studio insurance may not meet a gym owner’s insurance needs. The same is usually true of swim and sports instructors insurance. It isn’t uncommon when to be told your business is not eligible for coverage after applying for insurance. Dig a little deeper and ask questions about how to get your gym insured properly.
Gym Insurance Costs
The high-risk nature of gym activities makes gym insurance more expensive than many other business insurance classifications. Expect to pay between $3,000 to $5,500 annually for all insurance policies for a small gym of less than 2,000 square feet. This average is a comprehensive set of policies with general liability, business property, and workers’ compensation.
Gym Insurance Costs & Deductible
General Liability Insurance
Business Property Insurance
Total Potential Costs
Gym insurance costs vary widely from state to state. These are average starting costs of a policy based on a gym of 2,000 square feet with one desk clerk and $100,000 in fitness and business equipment. Combining general liability with property in a business owner’s policy (BOP) often helps gym owners save money on insurance premiums.
Several things can affect gym insurance costs. The application process asks about your location size, the number of employees, revenues, and the fitness services you provide. It also inquires about additional services that affect eligibility and rate, such as offering massage therapy and selling supplements.
In many cases, the following will make you ineligible for coverage or put into an even higher risk rating classification:
- Training minors
- Selling private labeling supplements
- Having a cafe on site
- Martial arts
- Hosting fitness competitions
If you offer a broad spectrum of fitness services, including those often deemed ineligible, don’t get frustrated in the process. Be honest in the application to avoid being declined coverage in a claim and spend the time to understand what your risks are to protect your business properly.
Additional Types of Gym Insurance
As a gym owner, you may have exclusions to your policy. It may be necessary to combine various policies and get supplemental riders for your gym insurance policy to cover the risks properly. For instance, if your gym sends a team to the annual mud run, you will need to look at additional coverage.
Product Liability Insurance for Gyms
Product liability insurance specifically covers products sold in the gym. This could be supplements, workout clothes, or equipment. If a person buys supplements or other products you recommend or endorse, you could be held liable for any damage they cause. Product liability insurance covers this risk.
Event Insurance for Gyms
Event insurance is a specialty policy or rider added to an existing policy that covers you for larger events that may have a bigger risk exposure. For instance, if you host a CrossFit challenge, more people are attending and potentially getting injured during competition than on a regular workday. Event insurance specifically covers general liabilities during a special event.
Risk Exposures That Gym Insurance Covers
Gyms and fitness studios are often classified as different risks based on the gym structure. The gym has supervised, and unsupervised training where fitness studios are individual or group-led facilities have different levels of risk. A gym often has many fitness trainers who may be independent contractors meeting with clients but aren’t necessarily employed by the gym require different coverage. Small local gyms could be a franchise but are often mom-and-pop operations without big brand exposure where consumers may assume deeper pockets and be targets for larger claims.
The layout of the gym affects its degree of risk for injury, property damage, and trainer issues. Many gyms have a similar setup, such as a cardio section where clients can use treadmills, stationary bikes, elliptical machines, stair climbers, and other cardio exercise machines. There is often a free weight training section and a machine-assisted weight training section using equipment like Cybex machines.
The risks in the gym are extensive:
- Trip and fall accidents: Accidents and injuries resulting from tripping over equipment, being bumped by another person or falling over someone else’s personal items
- Major and minor injuries from working out: Ranging from ankle strains to spinal injuries leading to disability
- Major and minor health issues: Ranging from flu from contaminated equipment to cardiac arrest while exercising in the facility
- Accused of not rendering services as promised: Clients claiming the methods and workout routines did not get the results advertised and promised
- Damaged or stolen equipment: Business property lost in a fire, water damage, or taken by thieves
- Potential shutdown of gym: Temporary or permanent closure if there is a fire, equipment failure or water damage
A carrier that offers a business owner’s policy for gym owners provides a cost-effective solution that covers several potential losses. These include general liability claims such as trip and falls, medical payments for workout injuries and health issues, and coverage for business equipment. It also covers lost revenues if the gym is shut down for a period of time after a fire, water damage, or theft.
Tips on Getting & Applying Gym Insurance
As a gym owner, you know that by offering more variety in classes, workouts, and products, you build a stronger client base. But all the extras can lead to many rejections for insurers when looking for insurance. Here are some other things to think about when talking to insurance carriers about your coverage needs.
1. Prepare for Gym Insurance Underwriting Requirements
The application process for gym insurance requires you to answer many questions about what you do. Prepare to answer questions about the types of gym training, the classes, and any additional services you offer. The gym insurance provider will also want pictures, or they may send an underwriter to the facility to see what you are doing.
2. Establish Safety Policies and Procedures
Write safety policies and procedures down and post them in employee manuals and around the gym. Policies might include wiping down equipment after use and other cleaning procedures, keeping an incident log, posting warnings about proper form, getting a doctor’s approval for working out, and obtaining liability waivers from clients. Enforcing these procedures can reduce the likelihood of claims against your business, and that can keep costs down.
3. Have Certificates of Insurance from Independent Contractors
If your gym uses personal trainers who are independent contractors, your gym insurance carrier will require that they have their own insurance and provide you with a certificate of insurance (COI). This reduces risk to your company as well as to the insurance company. Personal trainers can get a cost-effective policy to meet their risk needs and demonstrate proof of insurance to contracting gyms.
“The gym owner has to name and list each individual trainer on their insurance regardless if they are 1099 (contractors) or W2 employees. However, while they are independent contractors, you have to pay for additional coverage throughout your insurance company, in most cases, since often these 1099 contractors have their own business and use your facility. So, to be safe, you must have this in order. Your rate will be better, and you will have a stronger defense if the trainer has their own liability insurance as well which they can require online.”
―Daniel Nyiri, Author & Celebrity Fitness Trainer, 4U-Fitness
Gym Insurance Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Gym insurance doesn’t cover every risk but is often confused with different risks. Here are some answers to frequently asked questions.
Is there insurance to cover early gym membership cancellations?
Membership cancellation isn’t a covered loss. This is not considered a qualified claim on any of your gym insurance policies. However, you might want to add a clause to your contracts that institute a fee for early cancellation.
Is there health insurance that covers gym membership?
There are health insurance providers that cover the costs of joining a gym. This is part of the preventative medicine movement that became popular with the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Medicare and Medicaid pay up to $250 toward a gym membership. Many insurers also offer gym discounts, including national carriers like Aetna.
How much does a million dollar bond cost?
Bonds for gyms are generally calculated at 1% of the bond value. If the bond is $1 million, the cost for a gym bond is approximately $10,000. If there’s a claim, the bond carrier pays it, and then the gym owner pays the bond company back. That is different than insurance where premiums are paid, and claims don’t get repaid.
What obligations do gyms have to prevent injuries on-premises?
Gym owners need to make every effort to prevent injuries. Negligence is not acceptable. Consulting with new clients to ensure they have the medical approval to workout, posting safety rules, and educating trainers on protocol and technique are all part of prevention. Keeping workout areas clean and putting equipment away is critical.
Every gym owner needs to obtain the right policy that covers supervised and unsupervised workouts with various machines and equipment. Gyms have more risk than a trip and fall where clients may get injured in a workout or even suffer cardiac arrest on an exercise bike. Don’t go bankrupt because you were confused about policies.
Getting a gym insurance quote can be frustrating, with a lot of companies not covering the business type. Don’t get frustrated. Companies such as The Hartford have the resources to help you navigate process quickly.