Last year I ran into a slight problem. I am going to be vague with the club details, but to cut a long story short I discovered that this club was teaching without insurance. Now for some people this may seem a minor matter, but let’s look at this realistically. If you are training in a martial art, at some point you are going to be injured.
- This may be bruises.
- You could end up with a bloodied nose or split lip.
- It may be the eventual inevitable moment when your toe slips between the mats and is broken. What? Hasn’t happened to you yet? Just you wait!
- Or it may be something which prevents you from working, say a broken arm. No work = no money = real misery all round.
Not only is there the practical matter of money, but there is also the ethical considerations. I think of the people who teach as holding some duty of care. The people I train with I form a good relationship with and I grow to trust them. If the leader of a club is arrogant enough to save a few pennies in the mistaken believe that no one is ever going to get seriously injured, then clearly they have no respect back for you.
At the end of the day I was very glad I was not a complete newbie to martial arts when I encountered this club. I also received advice from other people on the matter of insurance. In short, if someone is being cagey or repeatedly forgets to bring you a certificate of personal insurance or provide you with a copy of a group insurance, then run a mile from that club.
A quiet word with the venue saw the leader of this problem club being obliged to produce insurance certificates, so insurance was taken out. It doesn’t matter. I am not returning to train with someone who has complete contempt for his students welfare.