Staying Safe While You Get Fit
When you visit the gym, it’s good to think about more than what you’ll look like at the beach. Give a thought or two to safety.
According to Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) estimates quoted on NBCNews.com, thousands of people are treated in emergency rooms each year as a result of injuries from gym equipment like exercise balls, jump ropes, free weights – and especially treadmills.
The CPSC says treadmills cause the most injuries – more than 575 incidents in 2009. Free weights and weight machines caused another 224 injuries (insert your own “dumb bell” punchline). And jump ropes – yup, those seemingly innocent childhood playthings – sent 169 hapless users to the ER.
While gym injuries can be embarrassing, they aren’t always a laughing matter. Broken bones, brain injuries and severed fingertips are common. And the conditions at some gyms actually increase the potential for serious injury.
If you are injured at a fitness facility, consider factors that may have contributed to the situation, such as:
- Was equipment properly installed and maintained according to American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) standards? Are detailed maintenance logs available?
- Did equipment break or malfunction?
- How close was the equipment to other equipment or objects like pillars and walls?
- Were floors dry and free of clutter?
- Was the facility well lit?
- Did equipment have safety features like cut-off switches?
- How were you taught to use the equipment?
- Were ACSM-certified personal trainers available to evaluate your current fitness level, assist with your workout plan and ensure that you were exercising safely?
- What type of waivers did you sign?
If you have questions about a fitness-related injury, contact the personal injury attorneys at Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson for a free consultation.