A former Life Time group yoga instructor has sued the company for unpaid work she and other instructors were allegedly directed to do before and after they taught classes.
Alicia Schaeffer filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court last week against Chanhassen-based Life Time Inc. claiming that for about eight years when she worked for Life Time’s Bloomington North fitness facility she and other hourly group fitness instructors were unpaid for work they did outside of their official class times.
Her lawyers are seeking class-action status for the case. A judge has to determine if the case can move forward as a class action.
“In addition to teaching 60 minutes of class time, plaintiff’s job as group fitness instructor required her to perform work that preceded and followed each of her yoga classes. All group fitness instructors are similarly required to perform pre- and post-class work,” Schaeffer’s attorneys wrote in the complaint.
Life Time’s instructor manual says that trainers are expected to be in the studio 15 minutes before class with music playing from their own curated playlists, according to the complaint. Instructors are also asked to clean up after classes, such as gathering towels and stacking mats, it said.
Altogether, group instructors are required to complete a number of tasks outside of class without being paid like wiping down equipment, arranging props, and attending training meetings, according to the complaint.
“We intend to vigorously defend ourselves and stand by our employment practices,” Life Time spokeswoman Natalie Bushaw said.
She declined to discuss details about the case citing company policy on pending litigation.
The suit was filed a day after Life Time executives notified the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development that it would lay off about 300 corporate employees because of economic pressures it faces from gym closures due to the coronavirus outbreak.