Business Basics Day 4: Insurance & Professional Associations
As yoga teachers, we work with people’s bodies nearly every day. We are health professionals, and like all other health professionals we need to protect ourselves and our clients. We all pray that no one get’s injured or hurt in our classes but these things can happen. I strongly suggest purchasing ‘Public Liability’ and ‘Professional Indemnity’ insurance no matter how many classes you teach per week. Not only is it best practice, nearly all studios, gyms and workplaces will require you to have at least public liability insurance to teach at their premises.
Public liability insurance protects you if you are found legally responsible for any personal injury to a third party or damage to their property. It is one of the most important forms of cover you can get and is usually built in to most business insurance packages. Professional indemnity insurance is also a form of liability insurance that protects your professional advice and services you perform against any negligence claims made by a client.
The price of insurance can vary widely depending on how much you choose to be insured for and the insurance provider themselves. Generally speaking prices can range between $100-$400 both in the USA and Australia. For a handy price and coverage comparison table for yoga teachers and to learn more about insurance in the USA click here. For insurance in Australia, I recommend looking at Insurance House or Arthur J Gallagher (previously known as OAMPS). Before you decide which insurer to use and the amount of cover you wish to purchase, carefully consider your clients, how often you teach and where you teach. It is also a good idea to look at policy exclusions and as well as the inclusions.
Another type of insurance looking into is disability insurance. As yoga teachers, if we injure ourselves or get sick for an extended period of time then we can’t teach. And if we can’t teach then we can’t earn a living. Disability insurance policies will vary but some will pay up to 60% of your gross annual income for the time you are unable to teach.
Another endeavour worth looking into is joining a professional association. In Australia, the peak body for all things yoga is Yoga Australia. They have several levels of membership depending on teacher training hours completed and teaching experience and they pride themselves on having the highest standards in the world when it comes to accrediting yoga teachers and yoga teacher trainings. America’s equivalent professional association is called Yoga Alliance. They have a similar accrediting structure and they are both devoted to promoting the integrity and diversity of the teaching of yoga.
Benefits of joining a professional association include:
- Member only discounts and benefits for insurance, clothing, equipment etc.
- Professional development events
- Networking events
- Job opportunities
- Volunteer opportunities
It is also important to consider that more and more businesses looking to hire yoga teachers are also looking for them to be accredited by one or more of these associations. I am currently a Registered Teacher with Yoga Australia and have made so many connections that have turned into jobs or collaborations. It is also so replenishing for the soul when you have the chance to gather with likeminded yogis and rediscover the meaning of yoga – union. Not only is it good for business it’s good for the soul.