Who’s Responsible for Injuries at the Gym?

Every year, thousands of people are injured while working out at the gym. Injuries range from pulled muscles and minor sprains to serious torn ligaments, fractures and broken bones. Many of those injuries constitute premises liability claims filed with a premises liability lawyer.

Common Gym Injuries

With a variety of exercise equipment, heavy weights, and indoor racquet ball courts, injuries at the gym are more common than most people realize. Common injuries include hand and wrist injuries; fractures and broken bones; spinal cord injuries; chest trauma; and head, neck and back injuries. In Las Vegas, many hotels offer amenities like in-house gyms and health clubs with steam rooms, saunas, and hot tubs. Hard wet floors and slippery surfaces contribute to many slip and fall accidents that often result in serious head and brain injuries.

Many gym injuries result from poorly maintained equipment and negligent management, so it seems logical that injured gym members and guests would have a right to file insurance claims for injuries caused by dangerous conditions on the premises. Unfortunately, that’s often not the case.

Liability Waivers

To prevent a multitude of injury claims and lawsuits, most gyms require members and guests to sign contracts containing waivers of liability, which means that the gym can’t be held accountable for injuries. These waivers are legal contracts that effectively prohibit gym members and their guests from filing any legal action against the gym ownership or management. To determine if injuries constitute premises liability, the contract must be examined by a premises liability lawyer who understands complex language and legal terms specified in the contract. Common liability waivers include:

  • Total Waiver of Liability – Total liability waivers mean that the gym is free of all liability for any injury that occurs on the premises. If the waiver is overly broad, it may be held unenforceable in a court of law.
  • Negligence Waiver – Negligence waivers prevent gym members and guests from suing for injuries caused by negligence of the gym or it’s employees. Typically, negligence waivers are enforced in Nevada courts.
  • Intentional Injury Waiver – Most courts will not uphold intentional injury waivers. Reckless conduct that results in personal injury to another person is typically always enforced. If a gym owner knows that a treadmill isn’t working properly and can cause harm, but doesn’t repair it or warn of dangers, this can be considered reckless behavior that warrants a lawsuit with a premises liability lawyer.

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