Foot Loose: Legal Liability Issues Relating to Barefoot Exercise

Alexander “Sandie” Pendleton
Sports, Fitness & Recreational Team Leader
Kohner, Mann & Kailas, S.C.
Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Christopher McDougall’s bestselling book Born to Run, and the extensive discussion therein regarding the reported benefits of barefoot running, have helped to ignite a new exercise trend (craze?). Fitness center owners are being asked if members can exercise barefoot, or are just seeing members working out barefoot in areas of the facility where, until recently, no one wanted to do so.

Someone was Injured! Am I Liable?

This article by Doyice Cotten originally appeared in Fitness Management.  Sport, fitness, and recreation professionals often describe a situation involving an injury and ask if they are liable.  This article will help others to quickly determine if he or she might be liable in an injury situation.

Robert Craig, a 75-year-old client, was injured when the “dip station” on which he was exercising tipped over.  When Craig and the station fell backward,

Fla. Statute: Parents Can Waive Inherent Risks

May 22, 2010 /24-7PressRelease/ —

In 2008, the Florida Supreme Court held that parents who sign liability waivers allowing their children to participate in risky adventure activities are endangering their children’s property and estate, and therefore not acting in their children’s best interest.  As the court noted, child liability waivers protect businesses at the expense of children, which hardly seems a reasonable balancing of interests.

Accordingly, the Florida Supreme Court held that in the absence of a statute clearly permitting child liability waivers,

Using a Form Contract? Watch Your State Laws

This article was written by Julie I. Fershtman, Attorney at Law (www.equinelaw.net). She offers expert comment on a timely question regarding liability waivers.

Dear Ms. Fershtman:

My friend gave me some form liability releases and boarding contracts. Will they hold up?

– K.B. (No state specified)

My office receives inquiries like this often. Since many people in the horse industry still buy, sell, board, train, lease, or breed horses with nothing in writing,

Indemnification Tips

This was written by Charles “Reb” Gregg in September, 2006. Mr. Gregg provides some invaluable information regarding indemnification agreements. Mr. Gregg is a practicing attorney in Houston, Texas specializing in adventure law and may be reached at 800 Bering Drive, Suite 100, Houston, Texas 77057.

An indemnification is an agreement between two parties that addresses the possibility of a claim against one of them by a third party.

The party granting the indemnity (the “indemnitor”) promises the person indemnified (the “indemnitee”) that it,

Failure to Name Party Costly

Waivers and releases of liability can fail to protect for many reasons. Releases in three 2009 cases failed to protect because the waiver did not name the protected parties either by name or by function. These three cases can give sport, recreation, and fitness providers some guidance in writing a waiver or in evaluating a waiver currently in use.

Porter v. Dartmouth College

In Porter v. Dartmouth College (2009 U.S. Dist.

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),

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.