Deciding to become a personal trainer was no doubt a career that you thought long and hard about due to your drive to help people better themselves. This can be a very rewarding and lucrative career as well as one that fulfills your need to help people live better and healthier lives. At the same time, you want to protect yourself, your clients and your business. In order to apply for personal trainer liability insurance, you must have a nationally certified personal trainer certification. The following are eight reasons to invest in personal trainer liability insurance and what your client can claim was your area of negligence that caused them injury.
1. Inadequate Supervision
Your client can claim they were injured or didn’t receive the desired results due to a lack of supervision. Many of your clients will be new to the gym and are meeting with you because they don’t know where to begin based on their fitness levels.
You must pay attention at all times to ensure that they are completing the exercises with the correct form, or they are likely to become injured. They need to be supervised and receive proper instruction.
2. Inadequate Instruction
Clients can also claim that they weren’t provided with proper instruction on the equipment, and that is the reason they didn’t receive the results they wanted or why they injured themselves.
Focus on Details and Demonstration
You must provide full descriptions and demonstrations of the exercises that you’ve put together for them to do. The plan you put in place must take all of their history and goals into account as well to provide the results they desire. Clients will be very upset if they don’t receive the results that you claimed you could give them, so you want to also be fair in expectations.
3. Equipment Malfunction
There will be things that you can’t control, but that you still need to be prepared for, such as problems with fitness equipment that could arise.
Issues with machinery and equipment need to be carefully monitored as people can be easily injured if the machinery is not working properly. If you put someone on a machine that is compromised, and this person gets injured, there will be no way to get out of fault on that one. This is a very good reason why you should obtain personal trainer liability insurance – it will come in handy for incidents like these.
4 .Improper Use of Equipment
It is imperative that you instruct your clients on the equipment in the gym and the proper use of each piece that they will be using. It may also be a good idea to instruct them on those that they won’t be using as well.
How to Do It
If they use a piece of machinery without adequate instruction from you, they can easily hurt themselves and claim negligence on your part for not telling them the proper way to complete the exercise.
5. Inadequate Knowledge of Your Client’s Medical/Injury History
You need to know your clients’ medical histories and injury histories and have them complete a fitness assessment before they get started.
There is no excuse for not learning these things before developing a program or instructing them on the exercises they should be doing. For instance, someone might have had knee surgery and be unable to complete certain exercises without a high risk of injury. It is your job to know this ahead of time and take all of your clients’ limitations into consideration when developing a program. You should also reassess the program as your client progresses to update goals.
6. Nutrition and Supplement Counseling
This area can be a dangerous journey to embark on. Sure, you’re fit and you have a lot of knowledge about food and supplements, but it is a dangerous area in which to provide advice to your clients.
Unless you’re a certified dietician, you don’t want to give recommendations in these areas. You don’t know how someone will react to them. Without the certification to back up you recommendations, you could be in a world of trouble.
7. Pushing Your Clients Too Hard
The chances are that your clients will want to please you, but you need to know how hard to push them. It may be that they are unable to do something, but try it based on your recommendation.
Focus on How It Feels
Instead, you need to educate your clients on how hard to push themselves and recognize when something doesn’t feel right. They need to know to tell you what they are feeling in case you can recognize a problem that they may not.
8. Informed Consent, Release, and Assumption of Risk Forms Not Explained
It is also your job to fully explain these forms to the people you work with and keep them on file for the protection of your clients and you.
At Their Own Risk
Your clients need to understand that they are training at their own risk, and this should be done before having them do any exercises. They should also be cleared by their physician before beginning the training program.
It’s impossible to prevent all accidents, and that is why you need personal trainer liability insurance. Although you will do your best to prevent clients from getting hurt, it can easily happen, and you don’t want to lose your career over something that you can’t always control.
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