As Canadians move towards rediscovering wellness in new and old forms, it’s not a stretch for yoga instructors to be in demand. 

According to the Canadian Yoga Alliance, over 2,000 professional yoga instructors are located nationwide. Moreover, according to data from Leger, a market research and analytics company, one in five (21%) Canadians practice yoga. 

Teaching yoga classes can be a satisfying and profitable business for knowledgeable, certified instructors.

But staying Zen and avoiding legal entanglements or expensive accidents means yoga instructor insurance is necessary. It protects yoga instructors from potential lawsuits and other financial losses that may arise from their teaching activities.

A yoga class.

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Think of it as a safety net for your yoga business that can save you from financial ruin in an unforeseen event. So, before you slip into the Savasana pose, consider how to protect your livelihood.

Do Canadian Yoga Instructors Need Insurance?

In Canada, there’s no law mandating yoga instructors have insurance. But mishaps happen to even the most seasoned and cautious instructors.

Unfortunate incidents can still occur even if you’re as careful as a cat (pose). Yoga insurance covers a range of claims that can be costly, including injuries to clients, property damage, and allegations of defamation.

Where Can I Teach Yoga in Canada?

Yoga teachers have the option to conduct classes in many different locations, including:

  • Outdoors: Outdoor settings like public parks and beaches or private properties with a backyard or rooftop patio are popular in the summertime for yoga enthusiasts. Practicing yoga in the great outdoors is an excellent way to exercise and enjoy nature. However, if you’re running a class outdoors on public property, you may require a permit from the municipality where you teach. Additionally, if you intend to host classes on a rooftop patio of a private condominium, consult the condo corporation or governing board first. You may be required to pay a fee to use the space and provide a copy of your certificate of insurance.
  • Retreats: Yoga retreats are usually hosted in secluded areas, allowing participants to indulge entirely in yoga and meditation. Yoga retreats are a fantastic way to learn about yoga and connect with other enthusiasts. The retreats usually span several days and involve multiple yoga classes per day, as well as meditation, yoga philosophy discussions, and other activities. It’s a great chance to dive deeper into yoga practice and maybe even discover new poses to add to your repertoire.
  • Online: Virtual lessons can be live or pre-recorded and are ideal for folks who want to practice yoga but can’t attend a studio in person.
  • Studios: Usually located in bustling cities and catering to yogis of all levels, there are plenty of studios across Canada to work from, so you’re bound to find one close to your home or office.

Does Yoga Instructor Insurance Cover Me If I Teach Internationally?

If you are a yoga instructor who frequently travels or teaches internationally online, you may need to up your coverage to ensure you are protected while teaching clients in other countries or jurisdictions.

A Zensurance broker can review your policy to determine whether you are covered while teaching internationally and advise you if you need to purchase additional coverage.

What Does Insurance for Yoga Instructors Include?

As a yoga instructor, you may be curious about what type of insurance you need to protect yourself and your business. Insurance for yoga instructors generally includes the following types of coverage:

  • General liability insurance: The foundation of any yoga instructor liability insurance policy, general liability covers everyday risks and accidents related to your yoga practice. For example, it can cover third-party bodily injury or property damage claims if a client trips over a mat or gets hit by a falling object. It provides coverage for an injured client’s medical fees and your legal expenses and settlements if you are sued.
  • Professional liability insurance: Also called errors and omissions (E&O) insurance, professional liability insurance covers financial losses arising from claims of negligence, errors, or omissions. For yoga instructors, that can include claims from clients who feel you did not provide the promised level of service or allegations and legal action arising from injury to a client or damage caused by your alignment cues, adjustments, or general sequencing during instruction.
  • Product liability insurance: Covers you from claims alleging that a product you distribute, manufacture, or sell (in the case of a yoga studio, that could be exercise equipment, snacks, or wellness products) causes third-party bodily injury or property damage.
  • Commercial property insurance: Covers damages and losses to your property, such as a studio, equipment, or inventory. It can include business interruption coverage for overhead costs, including lost income following an insurable event.
  • Cyber Insurance: Protects you from the financial losses associated with cybercrime, such as data breaches, hacking, and ransomware attacks. It covers the cost of repairing or replacing your software systems, as well as your legal fees and customer notification expenses. 

These are just a few of the types of coverage that your yoga instructor policy may require. What you need depends on your unique situation and business practices.

It is also best to understand the different kinds of insurance coverage available to you and the coverage limits and exclusions that may apply.

For example, there are two basic liability insurance coverage types: claims-made and occurrence-based. Which one you choose depends on your circumstances. Here’s a quick overview of each:

Claims-made coverage

A claims-made policy applies to claims filed during the policy period, even if the claim occurred before the policy period began. Claims-made coverage typically has lower premiums than occurrence-based insurance. Still, you may require additional coverage to cover claims made after the policy expires.

Occurrence-based coverage

This type of insurance applies to claims reported after the policy expires, as long as the incident occurred while the policy was in effect. Occurrence form coverage typically has higher premiums than claims-made coverage. Still, it may provide more comprehensive coverage over the long term.

Ensure your policy coverage limits are sufficient to protect your assets in the event of a lawsuit. With insurance policies, there are both per-claim limits and aggregate limits. The per-claim limit is the maximum amount the policy will pay for any claim. In contrast, the aggregate limit is the maximum amount the policy will pay for all claims during the policy period.

Insurance policies also contain several exclusions (situations or circumstances not covered by the policy). For example, most policies exclude intentional acts, criminal acts, and acts committed while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

How Much Does Yoga Instructor Insurance Cost?

The cost of yoga instructor insurance differs based on several elements. These include the instructor’s experience and certification, the amount of coverage they require, and the location of where they teach (in a studio, outdoors, or online). Generally, a basic yoga instructor insurance policy may cost between $300 and $600 annually.

It’s fundamental to consider the specifics of an insurance policy, as coverage and policy terms can vary among providers. To discover the most affordable coverage, research and compare different policies.

A few considerations that may affect the cost of your insurance premium:

  • The size of your yoga studio. Your policy should account for your risks if you have a large studio with multiple employees. Large yoga studios are more likely to be sued and have more assets at risk in case of a lawsuit or accident.
  • The types of yoga you offer can affect your premium. Some types of yoga, such as hot yoga or aerial yoga, are at higher risk than others. That’s because they involve more physical activity and pose a greater chance of injury to your clients. As a result, insurance companies may charge higher premiums for these types of yoga.
  • The amount of coverage you require determines the cost of your policy. You will likely pay more for your insurance if you need a high level of coverage, such as professional liability or property damage coverage. These types of coverage protect you from more serious risks.

How to Get Yoga Instructor Insurance in Canada

Yoga instructor insurance is recommended to protect yourself and your business from financial losses. It is a small investment that can provide peace of mind and protect you in the event of an accident or lawsuit. 

Here are the steps on how to get yoga instructor insurance in Canada:

  • Ask for help. You can contact large yoga organizations that provide information, guidance, and support for your research.
  • Get a free quote and explore your options. Save time and have a view of what your insurance options are by getting a free quote from Zensurance. With more than 50 insurance providers in our partner network, we can help you quickly compare rates and policies from different insurance companies to find the low-cost coverage you need with maximum protection.
  • Choose the policy coverages you need. Not all yoga instructor insurance policies are created equal. It is paramount to choose a policy that meets your specific needs.
  • Read the fine print. Understand the details of your policy, including its coverage limits, exclusions, and deductibles, to know what you’re covered for and where gaps may exist. A Zensurance broker can assist you if you need a policy review.
  • Keep your policy up to date. Your yoga instructor insurance policy should be reviewed and updated annually. Doing so will ensure you have the right coverage for the liability risks you face as your business grows.

Once you’ve locked down your yoga instructor insurance, there are many other things you can do to protect your assets and reputation as a yoga instructor, including: 

  • Educating yourself continuously on yoga techniques, trends, industry standards, and legal requirements. 
  • Getting certified by a reputable yoga organization to show your clients you know to teach safely and effectively. 
  • Have your clients sign a customer liability waiver before participating in classes or events. 
  • Showing proof of insurance is a great way to protect your reputation of trustworthiness and safety.

Yoga instructor insurance can protect you, your assets, and your clients.

Be like the tree pose with your flexibility, strength, and endurance in the face of risks. Contact us today to explore your options and get the coverage you need. Fill out our online application for a free quote. It only takes a few minutes. Then stretch, breathe, and relax!

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About the Author: Shelly Petrie

Shelly Petrie is a Team Lead, Digital Solutions Team, Zensurance.