Personal trainer insurance usually refers to commercial general liability, which covers third-party bodily injury, property damage and related legal costs. Depending on various factors, such as the size of the business and if you have employees, other types of insurance may be needed. The average personal trainer insurance cost ranges from $150 to $500 per year.
Many personal trainers and fitness instructors work on an independent basis and will need quick access to a certificate of insurance (COI). For instant access to a COI when you need one, and for a free, no obligation quote, you can talk to the experts at Next Insurance, where personal trainer insurance rates start at just $11 per month.
How Personal Trainer Insurance Works
Personal trainer insurance is not a type of insurance in itself but rather a collection of coverage types designed to protect personal trainers. The primary personal trainer insurance type is commercial general liability (CGL), which covers third-party claims arising from bodily injury, medical bills, property damage and related legal defense costs. Some trainers and fitness instructors will need other coverage types.
For most personal trainers and fitness instructors, the main coverage types needed are typically bundled into one package, called a business owners policy (BOP), which is a cost-effective means of getting broad coverage. Direct employees of a gym may not be covered and will need to confirm coverage with the owner.
Types of Personal Trainer Insurance
|Commercial General Liability||Third-party claims for bodily injury, property damage, medical payments and legal costs from incidents occurring on your premises, such a gym or your home|
|Professional Liability Insurance||Your clients’ bodily injury or property damage incurred during training activity Injuries or damages due to your mistakes, negligence or failure to fulfill contractual obligations|
|Product Liability Insurance||Injuries caused by products or equipment used when training clients|
|Sexual Misconduct Liability||For cost of legal defense if you are accused of sexual misconduct by one of your clients|
Personal Trainer Insurance Costs
Personal trainer or fitness instructor insurance costs typically range from about $150 to $500 per year because commercial general liability coverage is typically what most trainers need. However, the total cost of personal trainer insurance can be more, depending on a few key factors like the size of your business, if you have employees and your chosen coverage limits.
Personal Trainer Insurance Costs by Coverage Type
Best Personal Trainer Insurance Providers
To get the best personal trainer insurance for you, it’s important to find a provider that works with small businesses and has specialized insurance packages for personal trainers, fitness instructors and related professions like Pilates and yoga instructors. If the provider doesn’t understand your business, it may not recommend the appropriate coverage.
Here are four of the best personal trainer insurance providers:
Next Insurance is known for its simple, affordable and tailored insurance for small business owners. Its personal trainer insurance costs start at just $11 per month. Next Insurance offers a simple online application process, fast approvals and the ability to immediately print a COI, which is required by most gyms before you can begin training clients there.
Independent personal trainers and fitness instructors looking for the most important insurance coverage at competitive pricing will want to work with Next Insurance. This is the fastest way we know of for you to get access to coverage with a COI that you can show immediately to the gym where you train. Typically, the entire process can be completed online within minutes.
While Next Insurance is ideal for most personal trainers, including those who rent a space, it’s not ideal for all businesses. Those who own their own gym or train swimming, acrobatics, boxing or /martial arts with contact may need a different policy.
For these small business owners, Insurance321 is a good choice. It can connect you with a local insurance broker specializing in your area. You can get quotes from Insurance321 for free.
Sometimes, going with a large insurance company can make sense for a small business owner, especially when the insurer provides extensive coverage and outstanding service at the right price. Also, you may have other policies, such as home or auto insurance, that can potentially enable price reductions on your business coverage.
Personal trainers and fitness instructors that want to work with a large, national insurance provider should consider Nationwide. It is well-versed in working with niche small businesses like personal trainers and can provide the support you need to get coverage for your specific needs.
Hiscox is a large, nationwide insurance company but it does a good job of making small business insurance simple and easy. Hiscox is also a highly rated provider that has been writing policies in the United States for 40 years. Hiscox offers general liability insurance and professional liability for personal trainers. However, other coverage types can be added on as needed.
New clients can apply with a user-friendly website or call to apply. Hiscox can be the best provider for personal trainers who want a national provider with a simple online approach.
How to Apply for Personal Trainer and Fitness Instructor Insurance
Applying for insurance coverage is similar for most small business owners, but applying for personal trainer insurance will have some unique aspects to understand. You don’t need to be an insurance expert to find the ideal coverage at the right price, but there are a handful of important steps to take when applying.
Here are four things to remember when applying for personal trainer insurance:
1. Gather Documents You Need Before You Apply
To get the best personal trainer insurance for you, make sure you have all the necessary information about your business ready. Having the proper documents will help the insurance company or representative know how to best protect your business and to prevent a rejected claim for not providing complete or truthful information on the application.
Here are the documents and information to have ready before you apply for personal trainer insurance:
- Value of assets, such as your fitness facility, if applicable, and your training equipment
- Products, such as nutrition and dietary supplements, you sell or provide to clients
- Number of years you’ve worked in the personal fitness industry
- Information on other insurance coverage you already have
- Claims history (should be from at least the past three years)
2. Understand What Risks to Cover
No matter what type of personal training or fitness instruction you do, you’ll need general liability coverage. This will protect you from claims arising from accidents, such as bodily injury and property damage to third parties (your clients). Another risk to cover is lawsuits arising from injuries due to your instruction. For this, you’ll need professional liability insurance.
3. Pay Attention to the Exclusions
It’s better to have too much coverage than not enough. Also, it’s important to pay attention to exclusions, which are risks that are not covered in your policy. Some insurance companies may exclude certain coverage types from the policy to reduce the cost. Therefore, lower cost does not always translate to better value when it comes to insurance.
4. Ask About the COI
A COI is a document given to you by the insurance company that confirms your coverage. Personal trainers are typically required to provide COIs to gyms and studios before they can begin training. Some gyms will also need to be listed on the COI as an “additional insured.”
This means you’ll need to request a new document from your business insurance provider each time you work at a new gym. Insurance companies like Next Insurance make it so you can print COIs instantly from its website, or you can view it directly on your smartphone.
5. Apply With a Provider That is Experienced in the Fitness Industry
The health and fitness industry has unique risks associated with it that require specialized coverage. As a personal trainer, fitness instructor or health facility owner, there are risk exposures and insurance needs that are unique to your business. If you work with an insurance representative who understands your business, you’ll have a better chance of getting the appropriate coverage for the best value.
Most Common Types of Personal Trainer Insurance
Depending on the size and scope of your business, there are several types of fitness instructor insurance coverage that you may need. Independent personal trainers and instructors will need commercial general liability at a minimum. Professional liability is also required for many personal trainer and fitness businesses.
Most personal trainers will need at least a few basic coverage types, according to Natalie Cutler, senior insurance advisor, Next Insurance:
“Personal trainers need general liability and professional liability insurance. General liability insurance covers unforeseen accidents on the job site — for example, if somebody trips over a weight on the ground and breaks his or her leg. Professional liability covers bodily injury or property damage arising from your operations as a trainer. For example, a client sues you, alleging you failed to offer proper instruction on a certain exercise, resulting in a strained back. The client has to have surgery as a result of your services. Professional liability would cover this.”
Here are details on the four types of insurance coverage that personal trainers and fitness instructors need:
1. Commercial General Liability
CGL insurance, sometimes referred to as personal trainer liability insurance, covers third-party bodily injury, property damage, medical payments and related legal costs. This is the main coverage type every personal trainer business needs, whether they are independent or a gym owner. CGL insurance is the most common coverage type because third-party injury is the greatest risk for most small business owners.
A CGL policy is important small business insurance coverage because it is necessary when working directly with the public. For example, if a client trips over a dumbbell in your gym or rented space and is injured, CGL will cover the medical costs. If a piece of equipment falls on a client’s purse, crushing her new smartphone, CGL will cover the property damage.
Also, be sure that your CGL policy includes “damages to premises” coverage. If you are renting a space to train clients, this type of coverage will protect you against property damage that occurs as a result of your training. For example, if a stray medicine ball strikes a mirror in the studio you are renting and shatters it, your insurance would cover repairs up to your coverage limit.
2. Professional Trainer Liability Insurance
Also called errors and omissions (E&O) insurance, professional liability insurance is designed to cover the costs of legal defense and settlement for injuries to clients while you are training them or as a direct result of the service you are providing. This coverage includes injuries to a client caused by giving incorrect advice, an omission (leaving something out) or failing to deliver some aspect of your service.
For example, someone is hurt during a workout and claims that it was because of your advice. Whether or not the client is correct, your personal trainer professional liability insurance should cover your legal defense and any award made to the client, up to the limit of your coverage (generally $1 million).
Other Types of Personal Trainer Insurance You May Need
While independent personal trainers should be sufficiently covered with general liability and professional liability insurance coverage, there are at least three other coverage types that are recommended for certain risk exposures.
1. Product Liability Insurance
Product liability insurance (PLI) is designed to protect you against injuries caused by products or equipment used when training clients. Even if you did not make the product, you can still be sued if you advised the client to use a faulty product. If you sell or provide products for clients to use at home, some policies can extend protection to the client’s home as well.
For example, if a cable on a new piece of gym equipment snaps and injures the client you are training, your PLI should cover your legal defense. It can also cover any award made to the client for your involvement in the accident (or alleged accident), up to the limit of your coverage.
2. Sexual Misconduct Liability Insurance
Because of the physical and intimate nature of the personal trainer profession, sexual misconduct liability insurance can be a wise investment for many business owners, especially if you have employees. Your general liability insurance likely won’t cover sexual misconduct.
For example, if a client sues for sexual misconduct because you accidentally brushed her bra strap while training, your sexual misconduct liability insurance will cover the legal defense and related costs.
Who Needs Personal Trainer Liability Insurance
In short, every personal trainer and fitness professional, including yoga and Pilates instructors, needs to have insurance coverage. Whether you’re training one-on-one out of your home, your clients’ home, at the park or teaching classes in a commercial gym, every fitness professional should have personal trainer liability insurance coverage.
Without insurance coverage, you would be responsible for the cost of claims. According to Steve Pritchard, founder of cuuver.com:
“All personal trainers should look into buying personal trainer liability insurance. It’s a form of public liability insurance that covers trainers for any losses they could incur as a result of a member of the public making a claim against them but specialized for personal trainers to cover any injuries their customers may sustain as a result of their business. Without this coverage, personal trainers will incur the loss themselves.”
If you work for a commercial gym as a direct employee, there’s a good chance you’re covered by a personal trainer insurance policy already. However, you need to confirm this with your employer and check that the scope of coverage is sufficient for your needs.
If you work at a gym as an independent contractor, you are not likely covered by a policy. This is when it’s crucial to obtain your own coverage. In fact, most gyms will require a certificate of liability insurance, which is proof you have personal trainer liability insurance, before allowing you to work in the facility.
According to Franklin Antoian, personal trainer and founder of iBodyFit:
“Personal trainer liability insurance will generally cover you in the event that your client gets hurt performing an exercise that you recommended and decides to sue you. For this reason, I purchase it annually. Liability insurance is a small investment that can save you from financial disaster. Also, some gyms and clubs require that you hold a minimum of a $1 million policy if you want to work (train clients) on their premises.”
Also, keep in mind that there is a fine line between professional and recreational training. Even simply jogging with friends or chatting about nutrition can make you susceptible to legal action should an injury occur.
The Bottom Line
Personal trainer insurance is often called personal trainer liability insurance because the most important coverage types for personal trainers and fitness instructors are general liability and professional liability. Also, every personal trainer and fitness instructor should have quick and easy access to a certificate of liability insurance or COI.
If you’re a personal trainer who rents a space or trains outside a gym, Next Insurance provides all the coverage you’re likely to need, starting at $11 per month. You can apply online quickly and get instant access to your COI within minutes.