REPs members who have REPs liability insurance have sought clarification on whether it covers you to coach and work with clients remotely.

We can confirm your insurance does provide cover for this on the basis that you are working as you would do in person, but remotely. For example, you would be expected to have your online client complete a ParQ and relevant forms before they begin an exercise programme in the same way you would if you were coaching face-to-face.

You can coach remotely, including hosting live workouts or uploading pre-recorded instructional videos, on the basis that:

  • you are suitably qualified to coach the activity
  • the activity can be performed in someone’s home
  • you ask participants to check their surroundings are clear and to keep any distractions, such as pets, away during the session
  • you specify at the start of any session that your coaching is a means of general guidance and motivation. It is the participant's responsibility to be aware of their own capabilities and do what they are comfortable with. Medical advice should be sought if there is any doubt
  • you remind participants to stay hydrated
  • you're mindful of using copyrighted music/material.

NB In regards to uploads of your own pre-recorded instructional videos and training material, your insurance cover only relates to injury claims resulting from someone doing the exercises and would not cover any publishing of professional indemnity type risk. For publishing of professional indemnity cover, this is available directly from the insurance provider, Howden.

If you are coaching vulnerable adults or anyone under 18, then there are potential safeguarding points you will need to consider:

  • Gain written consent from their parents/guardians. Explain the purpose of the training, when it will be done and on what platform, etc
  • Use an online-sharing platform to avoid needing any of your participants' contact details (other than their parents'/guardians'), and only use it for the purpose of the training
  • Do not make contact with your participants outside of your coaching sessions unless you have explicit parental/guardian consent
  • Ensure that you and your participants wear appropriate clothing at all times.

Use this example disclaimer text in your training content, eg in the description of a YouTube upload. NB This is not a legally binding disclaimer. You must take responsibility for your sessions and the content you produce - whether it's live or pre-recorded instructional videos.