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31 January 2022

Accidents in the gym

This page will be updated with new information every Monday throughout this month, check back next week for the next installment.

Visit our Medical Mondays hub for more information

Attending a gym can be a great way of improving your health but accidents are not uncommon. Accidents that occur in the gym can sometimes result in serious injury, in certain circumstances it might be possible to make a personal injury claim.

As we enter the New Year, gym memberships have naturally increased and unfortunately so have injuries sustained at the gym.

Gym owners and instructors have a legal responsibility to ensure that their premises are adequately safe for use of both gym users and workers. They are required to ensure that appropriate risk assessments have been carried out, the equipment is safe, regular checks are made and the instructors are appropriately trained.

Although gym membership contracts usually oblige you to take some responsibility for any injury or accident at the gym, there are circumstances where a gym will be held legally responsible.

There are many steps gym owners and instructors can take to prevent accidents on the premises including providing adequate training to staff members and clients.

A common issue is machinery that isn’t working in which case members of staff should clearly mark these machines as ‘out of order’. If you were to ignore such a warning sign and injure yourself, it would almost certainly affect a potential successful claim. If the sign was not clearly visible this may affect the gym’s liability.

What are the common causes of accidents in the gym?

Going to the gym is undoubtedly a popular and effective way to stay fit and have fun, with over 10 million people in the UK recorded as having a gym membership last year.

However, accidents can occur in the gym, often as a consequence of the poor layout and equipment maintenance. Our Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury team have outlined the types of, and common causes, of injuries sustained in a gym below.

Examples of injuries sustained in the gym?

  • Back, head, or neck injuries
  • Muscle strains or sprains
  • Broken bones
  • Bruises
  • Open cuts and wounds
  • Soft tissue damage

What are the common causes of accidents in the gym?

  • Equipment placed too close together
  • Inadequate instruction by gym trainers
  • Poor cleaning of the gym and equipment
  • Faulty equipment
What standards should be met by the gym?

Gyms have a duty to protect customers and colleagues and ensure all can exercise safely on the premises.

As a gym owner or employer, you are legally required to meet certain standards to ensure the gym is a safe place to be, including:

Conducting a risk assessment

This involves hazards being identified, determination of who could be harmed and how, evaluating the risks and deciding on control measures, recording these findings and periodically reviewing and updating risk assessments.

Staff safety training

It is vital gyms provide their employees with adequate training so they have the knowledge of how to keep customers and colleagues safe. This also includes first aid training.

Inducting new gym members

If members are not trained in how to use the equipment safely and correctly, they could suffer certain injuries.

Supervision of users

Even after member inductions, there should still be staff monitoring members’ use of the equipment.

Equipment maintenance

It is important that the gym regularly carries out checks and maintenance of equipment.

What to do if you have an accident at the gym?

If you do have an accident at the gym and suffer an injury, you should first report the incident to a member of staff at the gym and ensure the details are recorded in an accident book.

Depending on the seriousness of your injury, it is always recommended to seek immediate medical assistance when needed.

You should also take photographs of any dangerous or faulty equipment where the accident occurred as this would help assist a potential personal injury claim.

It would also be a good idea to obtain contact details from any witnesses who may have witnessed the accident, as they may be able to provide evidence in a potential personal injury claim.

How do I know whether I have a claim?

In claims involving accidents at gyms, you (the Claimant) have to show that the owner of the property owed you a duty of care, that the owner breached that duty, and you were injured as a result of the breach and suffered a loss.

It is not just gym users who can sustain an injury at the gym but also employees. There are many ways that people can suffer an injury while at work and employers have a duty to provide their staff with a safe working environment in order for them to carry out their job correctly and safely.

If you have sustained an accident at the gym and you wish to discuss the nature of your circumstances in respect of bringing a personal injury claim, then please do not hesitate to contact us on 020 7833 4433. 

Find out more

Find out more by visiting our Medical Mondays hub, designed to provide up-to-date information on the different injuries, accidents, and claims that are commonly encountered by our team. 

How can we help you?

We are here to help. If you have any questions for us, please get in touch below.