What To Do If You Have Been Injured In A Gym In Queensland

An injury at the gym can throw a person off-course for weeks or even months, rendering them unable to train and in severe cases, unable to work.

If you reside in or are travelling in Queensland and have been injured in a gym, you may be wondering what to do next. Here are our recommended next steps.

Check your membership documentation

When you join a gym it is likely that you will be asked to sign a waiver in addition to, or part of, your membership contract. Waivers of this nature typically indemnify the provider against liability, preventing you from suing them for compensation. However, waivers do not negate the need for a gym to take adequate care of its members by ensuring that the gym is safe to use and fit for purpose.

Regardless of what the waiver says, gym owners have a duty of care to the people who use their facilities and they may be liable in the event a member is injured on their premises if they are found to be negligent.

Your responsibilities as a gym user

Although the gym owner/s has a duty of care to their members, those using the gym need to exercise caution, too. This means that appropriate clothing and footwear must be worn, equipment must be used correctly, and common sense should prevail when members are pushing their fitness levels to ensure they don’t cause themselves harm.

If a gym user sees faulty equipment or a hazard which could cause an injury they should report it to a member of staff immediately to avoid injury to themselves or another gym-goer.

If you cause an injury to another member (by dropping a weight on their foot, for example) you will personally be at fault and the injured party may make a claim against you directly.

Injuries while training with a personal trainer

Personal trainers are paid to push their clients to their fitness limits, but they are also hired for their expertise in achieving fitness goals safely and responsibly. To this end, if a person is injured while under the supervision of a personal trainer, they may be able to make a claim against the trainer or the gym if either were found to be negligent.

A client has a responsibility to their trainer to inform them of any existing injuries. If they do not do so and the existing injury is exacerbated by the session, they may not be able to make a claim against their trainer.

I’ve been injured at the gym. What are my legal rights?

Gyms must have current public liability insurance in order to be operating in line with the law, so even if you signed a waiver when you took out a membership with the gym, you can still seek public liability compensation in cases where the gym was negligent and that negligence caused an injury.

A gym’s negligence may result in an injury if it has broken or faulty equipment, slippery or uneven floors, unsecured benches or racks or its owners are fostering an otherwise unsafe environment.

Users of 24-hour gyms should be mindful of differences that may leave them ineligible for compensation if they are injured. Despite the freedom and flexibility that 24/7 gyms offer, late at night and in the early morning these spaces are often unsupervised, which can be bad news for an inexperienced exerciser. If a person is injured at a gym due to their own actions (for example, they have misused equipment or they were not wearing appropriate footwear) and the gym has not been negligent, the gym-goer is unlikely to be able to make a public liability insurance claim.

If you have been injured in a gym in Queensland and want to know your rights and next steps, our experienced personal injury lawyers can help you prepare a claim for compensation.

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