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Personal Injury - Gym whilst under PT supervision

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  • Personal Injury - Gym whilst under PT supervision

    Hi, I am looking for some advise please.

    I hired a PT (Personal Trainer) at my local gym to help me get back into shape.

    Contract info was emailed to me although nothing was signed and training began the following day.

    A block of 10 sessions were paid for in total at a cost of £500 in cash

    Within this documentation supplied to me via email is a waiver concerning risks during training and that the PT cannot be held responsible for any injuries etc

    Also within the same documentation provided were the PTs obligations;

    These include to name but a few;

    Not sharing my own information as this is strictly confidential

    Completing a pre assessment questionnaire to assess a clients medical history and physical condition

    Verbally I advised the PT that I had suffered a broken knee many years ago, damage to my left elbow and lower back pain (sciatica)

    During our 5th training session the PT introduced 'Hack Squats (Quarter)' to strengthen my legs. This exercise was carried out on a 'free' bar bell, that meant I was total un-supported during the exercise.

    After one set of 10 repetitions the PT asked how I felt and I said was OK and happy with the existing weight and sub consciously I rusted that he knew what he was doing, so he increased the load on each side of the bar bell by 10kg on both sides!

    As soon as I took the weight on my shoulders I experienced a sudden and extremely painful shock in my lower back, so I immediately advised the PT that this was hurting and the weight was placed back onto the weight frame. As soon as the weight came of my shoulders, again I felt the same pain and I could hardly move.

    I immediately stopped any further training and had to be taken home as I could not drive. A friend came and collected me.

    I continued to advise my PT that I could not attend any further training sessions and that my back was bad, although he kept encouraging me to attend further sessions.

    He then asked for a copy of an old MRI scan I had had done approx 5 years ago which was related to the previous issue I had had with my lower back, and which he had been advised about before we began our training sessions together. He reviewed this and said he was worried about the situation.

    After 2 weeks I realised things were getting worse, not better, and visited my Dr and was prescribed a host of different pain killers.

    These did not help, so I went back to my Dr and the prescription was changed and more powerful medication prescribed. I asked for another MRI scan which was refused.

    A few days later I called an ambulance as the pain was excrutiating and furger MRI scan were completed (still no final results).

    I have subseqeuntly seen a Neuro surgeon who suspects sciatic nerve damage due to the load placed on my shoulders which compressed my spine.

    I have written to my PT and asked for a refund for the remaining 5 gym sessions, and explained in my email to him that the damage to my back has been caused by the weight increase during our training session and could he please therefore provide me with a refund which he did.

    That was 5 months ago, and I am still in terrible pain.

    I am now on Oral Morphine, Gabapetine, Zapian, and Moterfiene, yet still suffer horrible periods of extreme pain and have been back to hospital (via ambulance) due to the situation

    As a result I have bee unable to work (I am self employed as an IT consultant), and am unable to carry out normal duties without help, and cannot drive due to the pain and the medication

    During this period I have also found out that my PT has;

    Shared my data with the gym he works with despite not seeking my consent

    Confirmed that the PT did not complete a review of my pre existing medical problems and did not document or ask me to sign anything in relation to this assessment or indeed provide any documentations for signature prior to engaging with my train sessions

    Can I sue the PT for gross negligence considering the circumstances ;

    1. I should have never been asked to do hack squats with my back condition

    2. Aligned to this, why would a PT then subsequently increase the weight increasing the risk of futher damage to my back (which has happened)

    3. The PT did not document anything concerning my pre existing medical condition, or carry out any kind or review or ask for any medical support to allow training to start

    4. Despite sending me a contract nothing was ever signed

    5. Within the T +C's of the contract the PT has failed to follow his own obligations in that he has not completed a pre assessment questionnare with me, and has shared my personal data with the gym despite this being advised as being strictly private and confidential

    6. Despite knowing my back was agony, continued to encourage me to come back for further training sessions

    7. When approached for a refund, the wording used advised him that 'due to the damage caused during the training sessions with him, my back pain has resulted due to the increase in weight applied during the hack squat'. He subsequently provided a refund.

    Any help would be much appreciated

    Thank you
    Tags: None

  • #2
    It doesn't matter that the contract wasn't signed, by the performance of his obligations under it (doing 5 sessions with you) you have both entered into the contract and the T&C's apply.

    He has been negligent in failing to conduct the medical assessment and that has resulted in the medical issue you now have, had he taken more reasonable care to carry out his full duties he would have known to avoid the kind of exercise you engaged in.

    I would say that you probably have a very good case, you'll need to see a personal injury solicitor and the only thing I would caution is that he is self employed, so before you go potentially racking up bills on solicitors (some do no win no fee, but if he can't pay their terms will bang the costs on to you) does he have public liability insurance, which he should if self employed then excellent, but if not consider what the likelihood this guy can pay any judgement is?

    Was he recommended by the gym? If so they should insist that he has public liability insurance to operate on their premises, so if he doesn't a solicitor might be able to advise if there's a claim against the gym.
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    My posts here are based on my experience of a variety of life events. I have no formal legal training & if in doubt take professional legal advice or contact CAB. If you follow anything I write here you do so at your own risk & I accept no liability for any loss, costs or other outcomes.

    Private messages are disabled as help is only offered publicly. I do not come on here in the evening, at weekends or on public holidays.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by jaguarsuk View Post
      It doesn't matter that the contract wasn't signed, by the performance of his obligations under it (doing 5 sessions with you) you have both entered into the contract and the T&C's apply.

      He has been negligent in failing to conduct the medical assessment and that has resulted in the medical issue you now have, had he taken more reasonable care to carry out his full duties he would have known to avoid the kind of exercise you engaged in.

      I would say that you probably have a very good case, you'll need to see a personal injury solicitor and the only thing I would caution is that he is self employed, so before you go potentially racking up bills on solicitors (some do no win no fee, but if he can't pay their terms will bang the costs on to you) does he have public liability insurance, which he should if self employed then excellent, but if not consider what the likelihood this guy can pay any judgement is?

      Was he recommended by the gym? If so they should insist that he has public liability insurance to operate on their premises, so if he doesn't a solicitor might be able to advise if there's a claim against the gym.
      Hi, and thank you for your response, this sounds encouraging.

      I do know the PT has public liability cover up to 2 million, so he is covered, and this is personal insurance, or I am assuming he has as this is again stated within his contract.

      I guess next steps involve engaging with the right solicitor and focusing on my recovery as this is really quite over whelming at the moment re pain management etc.

      Kind regards,

      Robert

      Comment


      • #4
        Doesn't matte r whether public ;liability insurance is in place or not.
        your claim will result in the PT claiming under a professional indemnity policy (if he has one!)

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by des8 View Post
          Doesn't matte r whether public ;liability insurance is in place or not.
          your claim will result in the PT claiming under a professional indemnity policy (if he has one!)
          Hi, his T and Cs don't mention professional indemnity just public liability insurance

          Comment


          • #6
            Even if he has PI cover I would not anticipate it being mentioned

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi, I recently received a letter from the firm of solicitors I had hoped would pick up this claim, but they have said they are not willing to take this on. I am gutted because this is so obviously a genuine claim. They have stated that they aren't saying I don't have a case but that they aren't willing to pursue this. They are not accident specialists so I guess my next route is to find a company that will help. Does anyone have any suggestions?

              Thank you

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi Robert,

                I would suggest you google a personal injury specialist lawyer who deals with public liability claims. It may be that the lawyer you initially spoke to did not put your likelihood of success at over 50% so they would be unwilling to take on the claim under a CFA (No win no fee) arrangement.

                You could have a look on our sister site JustBeagle.com and search for personal injury lawyers. It is worth shopping around. I would suggest that you prepare a timeline of the documents and incidents subsequently so you are able to succinctly fill in the picture for them. They will need to see the contract and any other documentation related to this before they can make a decision. If no-one is willing to take it on under a no win no fee you can of course write formally to him and the gym, who may also have a responsibility if he is their recommended PT.

                Get some lawyer advice and if none of them are willing to take it on it may be worth sending a letter to the PT and gym yourself. We can help with pointers if that is needed. Generally PI lawyers will try if they think there are sufficient prospects of you succeeding, so if there is no one willing to take on the claim I wouldn't hold your breath for an amazing settlement but you may get something.

                In the meantime do keep receipts (prescriptions and physio etc) and a note of travel to Dr's or other related appointments. Bear in mind this is an exacerbation of a pre existing back injury and there will always be an argument about how much the injury sustained with the PT actually contributed to your current situation.

                Hope this helps.
                Last edited by Peridot; 12th September 2018, 10:18:AM. Reason: left out some info
                I am a qualified solicitor and am happy to try and assist informally, where needed.

                Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any practical advice I give is without liability. I do not represent people on the forum.

                If in doubt you should always seek professional face to face legal advice.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thank you ever so much. i have now found a firm willing to take this on on a no win no fee basis. i have been through detailed questions and points relating to the case and they feel i have a strong case so fingers crossed. Still in horrible pain and hope something will come from this it is life changing !!!

                  Anyone else out there suffering you have my sympathies and support and rest assured if i can help from this experience, i will.

                  Take care and be safe

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Could anyone advice or estimate a likely payout for these injuries. The incident occurred on the 14th May and is still an issue. I am self employed and can not work, will my salary be taken into account i.e. how much I have potentially lost, or is there some kind of table / algorithm that is used to determine settlements if indeed we are successful?

                    Thanks.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hi Robert,

                      Damages are calculated on a couple of aspects. Special damages are all those damages expenses that have left you out of pocket, loss of earnings, prescriptions, travel for treatment etc. As self employed you would need to provide your last couple of years accounts and any 'bookings' that you had that you have then been unable to complete etc. Travel is calculated by distance if driving or receipts/tickets if public transport/taxi etc. Depending on the likely recovery times, future losses can also be included.

                      General damages are calculated on the basis of the injury itself and it's prognosis so without medical reports you can't really start to guesstimate. This is particularly true when dealing with an exacerbation of a pre-existing injury. General damages are calculated based on previous case law decisions. There is also the Judicial Studies Board guidelines which provides a sliding scale for each type of injury. The figure adopted will be dependant on what the medical expert indicates the injury is and the likely prognosis for recovery bearing in mind any pre-existing condition and how that was likely to progress.

                      Your lawyer should be able to let you know the JSB guideline figures but you will probably have to wait for your medical report. They should also guide you as to what things can be included in your schedule of loss (the document setting out all your special damages and the injury).

                      Hope this helps.
                      I am a qualified solicitor and am happy to try and assist informally, where needed.

                      Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any practical advice I give is without liability. I do not represent people on the forum.

                      If in doubt you should always seek professional face to face legal advice.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Thank you ever so much this is extremely helpful. I noticed on some paper work received from my lawyer (which provided a copy of my statement to check) that there were 2 tick boxes (1 pre filled) stating claim amount unto £10,000 (not ticked) and unto £25,000 (ticked).

                        I was wondering if this purely based on my lawyers estimation and if this was purely a guess they need to provide to manage expectations relating to the claim injury on its own, i.e not taking into account lost earnings etc?

                        As an IT PM and Test Strategy manager I earn approx £15,000 per month and have been unable to work since the middle of May and still can't due to my ongoing back condition, so hope this situation will also be taken into account?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Hi Robert,

                          The claim value tick box is to assist the Court with timetablimg but will also be loosely based on the likely value of the claim. Has the defendant admitted liability? I assume not if claim forms are being prepared?

                          Liability is the important thing here. If the Defendant can’t be shown to have been negligent then your claim will fail. Sorry to be blunt but do keep it in mind as your case may not be cut and dried. Try to do what you can to aid your own recovery and claim any benefits that you may be entitled to.

                          Make sure your lawyer knows about your usual earnings and be sure you can evidence this claim for loss of earnings when you get to that point. Keep all associated receipts too.

                          As I mentioned before if liability is proven then any losses you achieve will very much depend on the medical evidence and the time estimates for recovery and factor in any prexisting issues you have.

                          Keep us posted, will be interesting to hear your updates. Here if you need any other pointers.
                          I am a qualified solicitor and am happy to try and assist informally, where needed.

                          Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any practical advice I give is without liability. I do not represent people on the forum.

                          If in doubt you should always seek professional face to face legal advice.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Will do, just gong to speak to my solicitors re my lost earnings as he hasn't asked about that to date.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Claim forms have been sent to the defendant, and it's been a month to date and we have not heard anything. My solicitor is going to chase this again.

                              I have managed to obtain a contact within the Gym owners (HUT Group - legal team) and passed this on to my solicitor as we have requested evidence from them that their PTs actually have insurance and proof to support this. I have also provided my solicitor with proof of my normal earnings as a contractor, but as I haven't been able to look for work I haven't been able to earn anything!!!

                              On the positive side, and after nearly 6 moths I am beginning to slowly feel some improvement but am still on strong medication which manages the pain and whilst on this I can't drive and have suffered other side effects which are not great....

                              Comment

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