Austin Exercise Equipment Accident Lawyers
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Working out at home or in a gym has many great benefits for your health. However, there are risks associated with working out that can involve equipment malfunction or other accidents.
Workouts at home could lead to injuries if the equipment you are using malfunctions or breaks. Even though you are at home, you may still have a personal injury claim for your injuries. A gym should be a safe environment that is maintained to prevent injuries. If you have been injured on a treadmill or spin bike at the neighborhood gym, you may be entitled to compensation.
If you or a loved one has been injured in Austin, Texas, while using exercise equipment, call our personal injury lawyers at Zinda Law Group at (800) 863-5312 for a 100% free case evaluation; we have offices in Austin so we will be able to locate a personal injury attorney near you.
types of gym accidents and exercise equipment injuries
Working out is something that doctors encourage most of us to do for the many health benefits it offers. However, faulty exercise equipment or improperly maintained gyms could pose risks and cause injuries. There are many types of injuries that could occur from using exercise equipment, but not all of them will lead to third party liability.
Exercise equipment accidents happen in homes or in the gym. If you are using exercise equipment that you purchased from a retailer either online or at a store for use in your home, the retailer, or the manufacturer may be liable to you for an injury that occurred if they were responsible for the malfunction or defect. If you were injured from overexerting yourself on exercise equipment, you will not likely have a strong claim for your injuries.
Types of gym accidents include defective equipment, improperly maintained equipment, failure to manage hazards such as spills, or failure to warn of risks and dangers associated with certain activities or equipment. Two examples of incidents which occur involving defective gym equipment include weightlifting bars bending or breaking, causing the weights to fall off and injure you. Cables or cords may also snap, causing injury.
most dangerous exercise equipment
Based on data reported to the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS), treadmills accounted for 66% of exercise equipment-related injuries in the years 2007 to 2011. Most injuries sustained by young children on treadmills were lacerations and soft tissue injuries. For adults, the most common injuries were sprains and muscle strains. Elderly adults had a higher chance of being admitted to the hospital. In 2016, 34% of women and 31% of men who visited the emergency room following an equipment injury had used a treadmill.
General exercise equipment such as machines accounted for about 468,00 injuries in 2019, with the majority of injuries occurring in age groups 25 to 64. Exercise equipment injuries occurred more often than any other type of sport or recreation activity injury. In 2016, 11% of injuries with exercise equipment were due to a general exercise machine, almost 10% were due to a stationary bike, and almost 7% were due to an elliptical machine.
The most common injuries that can occur from the use of exercise equipment include:
- Broken bones
- Foot and ankle injuries
- Knee injuries
- Lower back injuries
- Neck injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Slip and falls
- Soft tissue injuries
- Spinal injuries
- Sprains and muscle strains
- Wrongful death
While soreness and other minor injuries are common and expected from gym equipment use and working out, it is the injuries that occur that are outside of this scope that should be addressed.
who is liable for an exercise equipment injury?
The general basis for a personal injury claim is the legal theory of negligence. In order to be successful in a claim for negligence, you must convince the court that four main elements are met.
First, there must have been a duty that was owed to you. For example, a piece of exercise equipment should come with instructions for their proper and safe usage if you are using it at home. There should also be clear warnings of any dangers that are not obvious. If the equipment was at a gym, the staff have a duty to maintain the equipment in working condition or to effectively prevent the use of it until it is repaired.
Second, there must have been a breach of that duty. If the exercise equipment was at a gym and an employee failed to remove the broken equipment or label it “Out of Order,” then they may have breached their duty to keep you safe.
Third, the breach of the duty must have been the cause of our injuries. If you were using exercise equipment at home, but injured yourself because you overexerted your muscles, then the cause of your injuries was your own doing.
Fourth, you must have actually sustained injuries as a result of someone else’s actions. If you see that a piece of equipment is not working properly and do not use it, then you have not actually suffered any injuries.
Several parties who might be held liable to you for your injuries after using exercise equipment are listed below.
If you were injured while using exercise equipment that was located within a gym, the gym owner may be liable to you on the basis of premises liability. Premises liability refers to the legal concept that is involved when a personal injury occurs on someone else’s property.
In order to be successful in your claim against a gym, you must be able to show that there was a dangerous condition on the premises which was the cause of your injury. This could include broken equipment that was not labeled with a warning sign.
The manufacturer who designed and made the exercise equipment has a responsibility to consumers to make sure the equipment is reasonably safe for use. If the equipment was defective in its design or lacked an adequate warning for a non-obvious danger, then you may be able to sue based on a product liability lawsuit.
The retailer that sold the equipment that ultimately caused your injury may be liable to you as well. It is sometimes not a requirement that the retailer know that the equipment was dangerous. The sale of a defective product that caused you injury is sometimes all that is required to be able to bring a claim for damages.
Other Gym Members
Other gym members present in the gym have a duty to act reasonably and not cause injury to others. For example, if a gym member was careless in using equipment or when re-racking weights, and a weight plate rolls across the floor and injures your ankle, you may have a claim against them for negligence.
Will a liability waiver prevent you from suing?
Most gyms will require you to sign a liability waiver prior to being able to use their equipment. Normally, the waiver prevents you from suing if you are injured using their equipment. However, you may still be able to sue a gym if the gym violated any statute or regulation or if the language of the waiver is too vague. Additionally, if the injury from workout equipment occurred in your home, then there was likely no liability waiver or contract you had to sign prior to its use.
Gym equipment that is sold for home usage may also come with warranties. Warranties may be given by the salesperson at the store, may be included in the instruction manual, or may be implied. Warranties that are breached may give rise for a lawsuit. For example, if you were sold a pull-up bar that warranted the ability to sustain a certain weight and it broke at that weight, you may have a claim for damages.
damages that may be recoverable after an exercise equipment injury
If you are successful in your claim for damages, you will be able to recover financially for the costs that you incurred due to the injury. This may include:
- Emotional distress
- Lost wages
- Medical bills
- Medical devices such as crutches or a wheelchair
- Mental anguish
- Pain and suffering
- Past and future medical care
- Prescription medications
- Punitive damages (very rare)
If you were an employee at a gym where you were injured by the equipment, you may be eligible to file a workers’ compensation claim. A workers’ compensation claim does not require you to prove that anyone was negligent. Typically, all you need to prove is that you were injured while at work while performing a work-related duty.
Get Help from austin exercise equipment accident Lawyers
At Zinda Law Group, our personal injury lawyers are experienced and have handled many cases involving victims of accidents involving exercise equipment. We have the knowledge and resources necessary to help you determine what to do next and to help recover the best possible outcome for your case.
Call us today at (800) 863-5312 for a free and confidential consultation with one of our personal injury lawyers in Austin. We are no win, no pay lawyers. This means you will pay nothing unless we win your case. That’s our No Win, No Fee Guarantee.
Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.