You Have Identified a Risk — What Now?

This article originally appeared in Fitness Management in January 2008. It has been modified slightly for the website.

Most sport, recreation, and fitness professionals should be able to identify the risks facing their business. The question is, what do you do about a risk once it is identified? Whether the risk involves a property exposure, liability for negligence, or business operations, management must determine the extent of the risk by examining the following: 1) its potential severity (possible impact on the corporation functioning and possible seriousness of a resulting injury),

NOTICE: New Edition Now Available

Why learn about waivers?

With the constant threat of lawsuits looming in the sport, recreation, and fitness fields, providers often use contracts and other documents for financial protection. This comprehensive book will help you protect your business with the most effective waivers, releases, and other protective documents.

What is included?

  • 183 pages
  • Totally revised and updated
  • Table of contents
  • Public Policy is addressed and clarified
  • New Steps for Writing Waivers –

Make Your Waiver Broad

This article appeared in Fitness Management in May, 2008.

In a 2007 California waiver case, Georja Jones became a member of the Pritikin Longevity Center and Spa, a fitness center located within the Loews Santa Monica Hotel, Calif. She signed a membership agreement that consisted of several paragraphs. In paragraph seven, titled “Waiver of Liability,” Jones acknowledged that she was using the facility at her own risk, and waived the liability of the hotel.

The Importance of Well-Written Waivers

By Doyice J. Cotten

This article appeared in Fitness Management in September, 2008.

Ning Yan fell while running on a treadmill, and died from his injuries. A representative of his estate sued, alleging that the fitness center was negligent in placing the treadmill too close to a wall. The estate contended that the treadmill belt threw Yan off the rear of the treadmill into a wall that was only 2 ½ feet from the treadmill.

Ecuador – A Little Risk Management? Part III

NOTE: Click on a photo to enlarge.

No visitor to Ecuador can see and experience all of the country.  Mary and I saw the activities described in the Part I and Part II of this series. Here are a few more observations in this final Part of our Ecuador series.

In the Banos area, hot springs abound because Banos is at the foot of an active volcano – so active that its eruptions a year or two ago endangered the town and destroyed one road leading into the town.

Ecuador – Playground Equipment Part II

NOTE: Click on a photo to enlarge.

While in Ecuador, we saw some playgrounds at city parks and thought many readers might be interested in what we found. Ecuador, being a poor country, obviously spends less money on equipment than we do, but we have many things in common. They, like us, have some equipment that is good and some that is bad. As you look at these photos, you can be the judge. But from what we observed,

Ecuador – Scenes of Fitness and Recreation Part I

NOTE: click on a photo to enlarge.

Mary and I just returned from 10 days in Ecuador — a country filled with volcanoes, markets, and friendly people. While there, two other things stood out – not nearly as many fat or obese people as in the U.S. and a lot of people recreating and exercising. Included here are a number of photos of people getting their exercise and enjoying life in public parks and other locations.

18 Tips for Reducing the Risk of a Lawsuit

Many sport and recreation businesses are fearful of being sued. And those who aren’t, should be! Even if you use a waiver and have insurance, a lawsuit is bad news. You have a big headache that will drain your attention and your peace-of-mind. In addition, the process of defending a lawsuit usually lasts for several years. Even if you eventually win, you have had the worry and, often, an abundance of bad publicity. Financially, your insurance may not cover the claim,

Online Waivers/Electronic Signatures in NY

In a 2008 case (Stephenson v. Food Bank for New York City), Devone Stephenson alleged that the league was negligent in its supervision, operation, and control of the basketball game in which he was injured. Stephenson suffered a broken jaw when an opponent suddenly punched him in the face. Stephenson alleged that there was rough play, taunting, and “trash talk” throughout the game even though his team captain asked the referees to clean up the game.

18 Tips for Reducing the Risk of a Lawsuit (Part V – Basics of Risk Management)

This is the final part of a 5-part series of ways to reduce the risk of a lawsuit. This part focuses on guidelines dealing with the basic fundamentals of successful risk management.  Each subject encompasses an immense amount of subject matter.  See the sources cited for more information.

15.       Know and Adhere to Industry Standards[1]

Professionals are held to a standard of care that is deemed reasonable and any conduct that falls below that standard of care may leave the club liable for injuries or damages.