When Janine* encouraged one of her students to try out a new yoga position, little did she realise it might put her own entire livelihood at risk.
The pose proved to be too much of a stretch for the student in question, who badly twisted her shoulder. Janine did what she could to make her student comfortable and administer pain relief on the day. Unfortunately the problem didn’t go away.
The student required extensive physiotherapy treatment on the injury. She subsequently began legal proceedings against Janine, who was left facing a potential legal bill running into thousands of dollars.
An already stressful situation was threatening to spiral out of control. Fortunately for Janine, the claim against her was dismissed, and she didn’t have to face a day in court. Other yoga practitioners are not so lucky. Although uncommon, claims made against instructors for injuries to students can and do occur.
The event of legal proceedings taking place can be a daunting and, ultimately, costly process. And that’s why having the right level of professional indemnity insurance for yoga teachers can be so crucial.
Professional indemnity insurance for yoga teachers – how it works
Although Janine didn’t require her insurance to respond in this instance, her professional indemnity (PI) insurance policy would have provided the protection she needed.
"PI insurance is designed to protect business owners against the financial consequences of any mistakes they – or their staff – might make. It also protects against accusations of negligence (even if the allegations are unfounded), safeguarding your reputation and assets," explained Natasha Burr of Gallagher Insurance Brokers.
"Any legal costs related to investigating and defending a claim made against you or your business, and any amounts payable in direct relation to the claim are covered under a PI policy, subject to the policy excess."
PI insurance is a requirement if you wish to be registered with insurance health funds and is often a condition of membership for yoga associations. If you're a yoga instructor, you can access extremely competitively-priced professional indemnity and public liability insurance through Gallagher. We’re the endorsed broker to several yoga associations, and have more than 15,000 yoga practitioners, complementary therapists and natural therapists in our client base.
For more information on Gallagher's insurance solutions for yoga practitioners, and a wide range of natural therapists, click here. You can fill in an insurance proposal form online, and we offer multi modality cover as well as lower rates for part-time practitioners earning less than $5000 per year.
*Not her real name