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What insurance do personal trainers need?

14/09/2023

A personal trainer helping a client, knowing they have all the facts on what insurance personal trainers need

The UK is in the midst of a fitness slump. 34% of the population don’t exercise every week. And almost three-quarters of all adults in the UK are overweight.

Why?

COVID shoulders some of the blame. With gym-goers struggling to find the motivation to return after the pandemic.

A lot of us made the change to working out at home. Remember those Joe Wicks workouts that were popping up?

We all discovered that you didn’t need a gym to stay fit. And for some people, this mindset has continued post-pandemic.

Start with a plan

But, if this is the case, why are the numbers of personal trainers in the UK still going up? There’s been a 58% increase since 2011. Up to around 24,000.

Well, it could be that some people wanted to return to the gym after the pandemic, but they still needed someone to help them meet their goals.

They needed their own Joe Wicks.

And that’s what you’re doing. You’re helping people achieve their goals, improve their health, and train for events. But growth means more clients, which also means more risk.

What happens if you recommend an exercise that leads to an injury? Or you don’t set up some equipment properly for a training session?

We all make mistakes. But sometimes, they can lead to a big claim. Which is why it's important to know your personal trainer insurance requirements inside and out.

But, what insurance do personal trainers need?

Just like you set up a regime for your clients, we’ve put together an insurance training plan to help you out.

Why is insurance important for personal trainers?

PTs face a lot of different risks. Working with lots of different clients, all with different needs and goals, can be confusing and lead to mistakes. You’re only human.

And accidents are common in the world of fitness. In 2022, 3.6 million people were treated in emergency departments around the UK for injuries involving sports.

That’s 300,000 people a day!

As a personal trainer, you’ll also have clients who aren’t used to some exercises and equipment. You guide them as well as you can, but it’s easy for a mistake to happen.

It’s not just accidents involving exercises and equipment that can land you in hot water. Training plans and fitness advice can lead to a claim too if your client’s unhappy with the results.

When almost any part of your job can lead to a claim, you have to be prepared. The right insurance for personal trainers will sort out medical bills, legal fees, and any compensation you might owe.

It’ll also help you protect your reputation and keep you working while the legal bits are going on.

What insurance do I need as a personal trainer?

First, we’re talking about insurance that’s required by law.

The good news is the list is very short for PTs.

The only insurance you’ll need by law is employers’ liability. And that’s only if you have employees working for you.

If you’re a sole trader, you don’t need to worry about it.

If you do have employees, you’ll want to read the government’s full guidance on employers’ liability. It lets you know why you need it, where to get it, and the level of cover you need.

That’s where your legal personal training insurance requirements end. But there are a few other kinds of insurance that you should have…

What insurance should I have as a personal trainer?

Things get a little bit more complicated now.

It’s important that the rest of your insurance covers every aspect of your business. And all the risks you might face.

Not all of these will apply to you, though. Don’t worry, we’ll go into detail about each kind of insurance and why you might need it.

Public liability insurance

Public liability insurance is one of the most important policies you’ll want to get.

It defends you against claims of injury or property damage that are found to be your fault. You might have set up a circuit training course for a client who then injures themselves tripping over a piece of equipment. Or you may have accidentally spilled coffee on a client’s phone during a consultation.

It’ll cover you wherever you meet clients, whether it’s in your own studio, a rented space, or a public place. And it pays any legal costs and compensation that you might owe.

Malpractice insurance

So, public liability covers you for accidental injury and property damage, but what if a client is hurt due to the advice you give them? That’s where malpractice insurance comes in for personal trainers.

It covers you if a client claims that they were hurt or mentally harmed because of the coaching or training you gave them.

Let’s say you’re coaching a client to improve their deadlift. You make a mistake, leading to a spinal injury and back pain. Or you recommend some supplements to a client that causes sickness, leading to them needing to take time off work.

Examples like these are what malpractice insurance will cover you for. Like public liability, it’ll pay for your legal fees and any compensation you might owe.

It can be difficult to understand the difference between public liability and malpractice insurance, but they’re both important policies that will protect your business.

On the move

So, you’ve sorted out cover for your work with clients.

Now it’s time to think about the tangibles. Your equipment and your studio.

Let’s talk equipment first. Namely, portable equipment insurance.

If you own and work from your own studio, you don’t need to worry about this. This is for the PTs who rent a space at a gym, do sessions in public spaces, or visit a client’s home.

It pays to repair or replace equipment that you take with you to do your job. This might be fitness equipment, speakers, a laptop, or a mobile phone.

Maybe you’re hosting a circuit session at the local park. You bring along a speaker and laptop, as well as loads of fitness equipment. One of your clients accidentally drops a weight on your laptop, breaking it.

No sweat. Portable equipment insurance will have you covered.

Oh, and remember that if you hire any equipment, you need to insure that too.

Closer to home

Next, we’ve got something for PTs who own and use their studio.

Studio insurance repairs or replaces your tech, furniture, and equipment in your studio if it’s stolen or damaged.

Let’s say you’re coaching your client through a strength session. Midway through, your client knocks into a mirror with a weight bar, smashing it. Or you take on a new client and they make off with a set of dumbbells.

Claims like these don’t have to throw you out of the zone. With studio insurance for personal trainers, you’ll be covered.

Keep your reputation in shape

Personal trainers face risks on a daily basis. From injuries and equipment damage to negligence and accidents.

If the worst happens and you’re hit by a claim, insurance can keep you on your feet. It’ll handle legal fees, medical expenses, and any compensation you might owe. And keep your reputation fighting fit.

But remember that personal trainer insurance isn’t one size fits all. What you need depends on where you train your clients, whether you have any employees, and what kind of equipment you use.

Want to find out more about what insurance personal trainers need? Give us a call on 0345 222 5391.

Image used under licence from Shutterstock

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