Injured at the Gym? Who is to Blame?

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If you got hurt at the gym, you may be wondering who is to blame. The answer depends on the circumstances of your accident. If the equipment was defective, the company that manufactured it may be liable.

If the gym failed to properly maintain the equipment, it may be held responsible. And if you were injured because of someone else’s negligence because they didn’t employ proper injury prevention, they may be liable.

Gym Injury Lawyer

When you’ve been hurt at the gym, the first thing you should do is seek medical attention. Once you have been seen by a doctor, you should contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your case.

An experienced attorney will be able to investigate your accident and determine who is liable. If you have suffered an injury at the gym, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact The Kryder Law Group, LLC today to schedule a free consultation.


Who is responsible for my gym injuries?

Injured at the Gym? Who is to Blame? Infographic

If someone negligently caused your workout injuries, you can typically hold them responsible in court. You can also hold their employer responsible if they were working in the scope of their employment. This is called respondeat superior and will often apply to physical trainers and the gym they are employed by. A negligent physical trainer might, for example, cause muscle imbalances that lead to injuries or encourage improper motions such as exaggerated wrist flexion or extreme twisting motions.

If a piece of equipment was defective and caused your injuries, you can sue the manufacturer. If the gym failed to properly maintain the equipment and it led to your accident, you can also hold them liable.

Examples of Negligent Parties that Can be Held Responsible for Your Injuries

Some common defendants in gym accidents are:

  • Gymnasium operator: Usually this will be the gym owner or franchisee. We will help you identify any associated companies that can also be held responsible.
  • Personal trainer or fitness instructor: Personal trainers and fitness instructors are supposed to be trained to help you perform safe exercise techniques that prevent injuries. Unfortunately, they might ignore your safety and push you too hard, teach dangerous techniques, or disregard safety equipment.
  • Equipment manufacturer: If the equipment was dangerously designed, the equipment company can be sued for product liability. If the equipment was left to break down, the owner will likely be responsible.
  • Equipment maintenance technician: Equipment will break down from time to time, so gyms often hire technicians to maintain their gym. If they improperly repair equipment, they can be sued along with the gym operator.
  • Other gym patrons: Unfortunately, these individuals are usually not covered by insurance, so it can be difficult to secure any recovery from other gym patrons.


What do I need to prove in my gym injury case?

To prove your gym injury case, you will have to present evidence showing: 1) the defendant owed you a duty of care, 2) the defendant breached that duty, and 3) the defendant’s breach caused your injuries.

Useful evidence to help prove your case will include eyewitness testimony, gym employee safety policies and procedures, gym employee training materials, video and photographs, medical records and bills, and expert testimony if necessary.


What are some common gym injuries?

There are many different types of injuries that can occur at the gym. The most common gym injuries include things that can happen from improper form or overexertion:

  • Torn ligament, tendons, and muscles: Too much weight or hyperextension of your joints can cause soft tissue injuries such as torn rotator cuffs, tennis elbow, and torn ACLs that can result in a lifetime of joint pain or elbow pain.
  • Sprains and strains: These injuries are caused by overstretching or tearing your ligaments and muscles.
  • Dislocations: Dislocations occur when your bones come out of their sockets.
  • Back injury: Improper lifting technique or too much weight can cause herniated disks, pinched nerves, and lower back pain.
  • Shoulder injury: Overuse injuries such as rotator cuff tears and bursitis are common in people who lift weights overhead, like a bench press or other exercises, or do repetitive motions with their arms.
  • Knee injury: ACL tears, meniscus tears, and patellar tendinitis are all common knee injuries that can occur at the gym. Knee pain (or knee patellofemoral syndrome) due to bad form or worn out running shoes is a common injury that can be made worse at the gym.
  • Ankle injury: Rolled ankles and Achilles tendon tears are among the most common ankle injuries.
  • Foot injury: Metatarsal fractures and plantar fasciitis are common foot injuries sustained at the gym.

Examples of Severe Gym Injuries

More severe injuries that can happen at the gym can include:

  • Fractures and dislocations: Falling weights from a trainer making you use too much weight, attempt too many repetitions, or not using proper form can cause catastrophic or even fatal crushing injuries.
  • Lacerations: Lacerations are cuts that often occur from contact with broken equipment or another person.
  • Paralysis: Falling weights can also cause severe spinal injuries, including paralysis.
  • Heatstroke: This is especially common in outdoor activities when a trainer pushes you too hard. Although they are supposed to be taught not to put their clients in danger, trainers oftentimes take things too far to “maximize” performance.
  • Heart attack: Similar to heatstroke, trainers should be conscious of the physical abilities and limitations of their clients. Failing to account for this can be deadly.
  • Overexertion injuries: Too many repetitions can do the opposite of build muscle. Rhabdomyolysis involves the breakdown of muscle into toxic byproducts and is especially common in high intensity workouts such as CrossFit and ultramarathon training. If your trainer pushes you too far, you can suffer rhabdomyolysis which can permanently damage your heart and kidneys.
  • Falls: Slippery floors and uneven flooring are common at gyms. If the gym knew of the condition but failed to rectify it, they can be held responsible.
  • Equipment failures: Equipment failures can cause serious falls and crushing injuries. Gym owners and operators are required to maintain their equipment.


What if I signed an injury waiver?

Gyms and personal trainers almost invariably require their clients to sign waivers before using their gym or training services. These waivers are then used to avoid responsibility for when they cause an accident.

Waivers Must be Clear, Explicit and Concise

Fortunately, Illinois courts have created a fairly established body of law limiting the power of these waivers. To be enforceable, waivers must be must be “clear, explicit, and concise,” which usually means it must state the following:

  • The type of harm the signer is waiving
  • The type of risks and activities involved
  • The individual or company the signer is agreeing to waive liability against

Speak to a Lawyer to Find Out if a Waiver Impacts Your Case

Whether these waivers are enforceable is highly fact specific and usually a decision for the judge to decide. You are encouraged to bring the waiver with you to your free initial consultation so we can identify flaws in the waiver so a judge will throw it out.


What should I do if I was injured working out?

If you were injured while working out, you should seek medical care as soon as possible. It is also important that you take pictures of the scene of your accident and get the contact information for any witnesses to your accident. These will be essential in proving how your accident occurred and who is at fault.

Get Experienced Legal Help

After you have sought out medical attention and gathered any evidence, you should contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your accident. A personal injury lawyer will be able to help you investigate your accident, identify the liable parties, and help you recover the compensation you are owed.

The Kryder Law Group, LLC, is a Chicago personal injury law firm that represents seriously injured victims. We have experience handling a wide variety of personal injury cases, including gym accidents. If you were injured while training at the gym, call us today for a free consultation to discuss your case.


How much is a gym injury case worth?

Gym injury cases are largely dictated by the nature of the injuries involved and the likelihood that the defendant will be held liable at trial. Jurors tend to award larger damages for more serious, permanent injuries.

Examples of Damages for a Gym Injury

Jurors typically assess the following factors when awarding damages:

  • Pain and suffering – including whether any injuries are permanent
  • Loss of a normal life – this factors in the little things in life you can no longer do as a result of your injury
  • Scarring and disfigurement – surgical scars, amputations, and use of medical devices such as wheelchairs all fall into this category and are recoverable at trial
  • Lost wages – including past and future income you lost or will lose because of your injury
  • Medical bills – you can recover all medical bills, both past and future, related to the accident
  • Loss of consortium – your spouse can file their own loss of consortium claim for lost love and affection from the accident


How can an attorney help?

An experienced personal injury lawyer will be able to investigate your accident, identify the liable parties, and help you recover the compensation you are owed.

If you were injured while working out, call us today for a free consultation to discuss your case. We work on a contingency fee basis, so you don’t owe us anything unless we recover financial compensation for you.

What You Get When You Call for a Free Case Evaluation

When you call The Kryder Law Group, you can expect to receive the following:

  • A free evaluation of your case by an experienced personal injury lawyer to determine if you have a claim
  • An honest assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of your case
  • A clear explanation of the legal process and what you can expect
  • A discussion of the likely outcome of your case, including the compensation you could recover
  • An estimate of the costs associated with pursuing your claim
  • The answer to any questions you have about your case or the legal process

You are under no obligation to hire us when you call for a free evaluation, so call today to learn more about your legal rights and options.

Call Today

The Kryder Law Group, LLC, is a Chicago personal injury law firm that represents seriously injured victims. We have experience handling a wide variety of personal injury cases, including gym accidents.

If you were injured at the gym, call us today for a free consultation to discuss your case.

Do I have a case?

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The Kryder Law Group, LLC Accident and Injury Lawyers, 134 North LaSalle St. Suite 1515 Chicago, IL 60602
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