General liability insurance for instructors of all martial arts and self-defense classes
No requirement to join another association or become certified to qualify.
Specifically designed for martial arts and/or self-defense instructors over the age of 18 working as an independent contractor training individuals or groups in any of the following areas.
- Law Enforcement / Security Defense Tactic Instruction
Martial Arts instruction in the following disciplines:
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
Jeet kune do
Mixed martial arts or ultimate fighting
Tang soo do
Martial arts instructors can be held liable for the medical costs related to injuries their students sustain, no matter where the training takes place. No matter how diligent you are in instructing your students in safety and proper techniques, accidents during martial arts instruction will occur. Medical expenses can be very costly and could bankrupt your business if you aren’t properly insured.
Whether you’re self-employed or work for a martial arts studio, it’s critical that your personal assets are protected from potentially crippling effects of a liability claim. Martial Arts Instructor insurance pays the cost of a legal defense against claims, any judgments/settlements handed down, and lost wages for the work you missed while defending a claim.
The best defense against allegations of negligence is to have a good defense ready. Document what led up to the injury and what care was taken by whom. For example, a beginning student in a kickboxing class was injured while being assisted with a roundhouse kick by her martial arts instructor. The student filed suit arguing that that particular kick is an intermediate or advanced technique, and therefore the instructor was at fault. The court ruled that injuries are inherent risks in martial arts and the liability waiver protected the instructor against her claim of negligence. It’s important to note that a well-constructed liability waiver is critical in such instances. A weakly-worded liability waiver can leave you vulnerable. Please see our article, “Are Waivers Worth The Paper They Are Written On?”
Instructors can also get caught up in situations when working in a health club or martial arts studio. For instance, a client collapsed during instruction and his heart stopped beating. Staff members attended him while waiting for EMS, but failed to retrieve an AED, which was available. EMS arrived in eight minutes, but not in time to save the victim. The facility’s liability waiver protected the instructors from liability for their negligent emergency treatment, but did not speak to the failure of the facility to adequately train the staff in proper emergency response. More than likely, the facility owner didn’t have those instructors’ backs when it came time to pay hefty attorney fees defending the lawsuit that followed.
Martial arts instructors should be certified in first aid, CPR and AED in order treat minor injuries or begin treatment of serious injuries until medical professionals arrive. Maintaining certifications is key, as illustrated by an instructor who was sued by a student who was injured. The instructor had no current certifications, kept no documentation of the instruction, and had not undertaken a health screened of the student prior to instruction. The plaintiff was awarded $1.4 million.
Risk Management tips for responding to client injuries.
- Don’t be an amateur athletic trainer; stay within your knowledge base of injury treatment.
- Don’t ignore client pain. Make certain there is no injury before proceeding and that future activity won’t aggravate the injury.
- If a serious condition is suspected, call for emergency help immediately.
- Maintain your first aid, CPA, and AED certifications and always be aware of where the AED and the closest telephone are located
Risk Management Resources
We offer free risk management information for martial arts instructors:
- Sample Waiver/Release-Minor & Adult
- Before You Sign the Facility Lease Agreement
- Emergency Information/Medical Consent Form