When you own a gym or a training studio the thought of losing all that you have worked for because of one mistake can be very stressing. A typical gym has a plethora of potential liability risks. Just think of the number of things that can go wrong in a fitness studio: someone could use equipment incorrectly; a weight could fall and cause injury; a fitness professional could inadequately explain to a client how to do an exercise safely resulting in injury.
Simply the act of exercise poses a lot of risks, especially when clients have injuries or weaknesses that they haven’t disclosed to gym staff. It is vital for gyms and fitness professionals to be hypervigilant of where a client’s responsibility ends and theirs begins. With the unpredictable nature of the industry, gyms and fitness professionals alike should be as informed as possible on the matter of negligence, and should seek the best coverage possible for public and professional liability.
A gym or fitness professional is liable to compensate clients injured in the course of fitness activities if they have been negligent in their service. Negligence is an offense and can include: giving the wrong advice or information and failure to comply with the standard of reasonable care expected from a provider of services. A breach of standard care is measured by whether the provider responded in a reasonable way to risks.
There are a lot of preventative measures that gyms should enforce such as: the gyms should be designed to avoid injuries to the greatest extent possible and be fitted with good and well maintained equipment. Signs indicating gym regulations, risks and giving instructions on how to use the gym equipment should be visible and at eye level, the gym should invest in slip-free flooring, all equipment should be commercial and not at-home-use, a strict cleaning schedule should be implemented and the gym should have emergency plans in place for unavoidable liability risks.
Unfortunately, even with all these preventative measures, injuries and claims still happen. Gyms and fitness professionals should obtain public liability and professional indemnity policies that cover a wide range of areas including products liability and personal injury liability. Fitness professionals that are employees at gyms are generally covered by their employer’s liability policy, but should endeavour to make sure they are covered adequately. However, contractors should have their own individual policy to protect themselves.
If you need advice on your gym liability insurance don’t hesitate to contact us today.