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personal trainer risks and personal trainer risk management tips

Top Personal Trainer Risks and Personal Trainer Risk Management Tips

According to the National Safety Council, exercise equipment accounted for about 409,000 injuries in 2021. It’s no surprise that personal trainers and coaches are always exposed to risk at their job.

In this article, we’ll cover personal trainer risk management tips as well as other information that is crucial to know for personal trainers.

If you’re an insurance producer and have clients who are personal trainers, this will be a good article to share with them. Let’s dive in.

What Does a Personal Trainer Do?

A personal trainer is someone that creates one-on-one fitness programs that are uniquely built for their clients. They guide them in their workouts and motivate them to achieve their goals.

Goals differ depending on the client. They might want to lose weight, gain muscle, or build endurance. The trainer will teach them different exercises and how to execute them properly with weights, classes, fitness machines, and cardio activities.

The personal trainer role is similar to a fitness or gym instructor, but a personal trainer typically holds more fitness qualifications. This allows them to give better and more tailored health and exercise advice.

The Risks of Being a Personal Trainer

As a person whose job is centered around exercise and heavy equipment, fitness trainers are constantly exposed to risk. These risks will vary depending on the training they provide, the clients they work with, and where they work out. Risks can be different for a weight class instructor compared to a yoga instructor.

Here’s a personal trainer guide to risks that can happen on the job.

Injury to Client While Being Supervised

Injuries happen all the time to people as they work out. It is the trainer’s job to educate and guide clients on how to avoid bodily injury. They need to gauge their capability to do certain exercises and make sure they do not sustain any injury.

Situations where this can happen include:

  • Clients pushing themselves past their limits during trainer supervision
  • Having clients perform challenging movements
  • Using specialized equipment without proper training
  • Use of facilities that are owned by another entity
  • Client’s existing or unreported medical conditions coming up during training

It’s important to be hyper-aware of all of these issues.

False Claims About Expertise

Trainers can risk liability if they falsely advertise their experience and training. It’s best to be honest on their resume and marketing to avoid any issues.

Providing Advice That Causes Injury

If the trainer gives advice about nutrition or exercises, it’s important to give proper guidance on how it is to be used and how it might affect them.

Giving exercises to clients to perform unsupervised can also be a risk.

Damage to Client’s Personal Property

If the personal trainer works with clients in their homes, they could be liable for any damage that happens to their property. For example, a piece of equipment that the client owns could be damaged during a workout.

Promising Unrealistic Results

There’s risk associated when providing or promising client-specific results. It’s important to provide a disclaimer that there are no guarantees or assurances associated with your client’s training program.

Personal Trainer Risk Management Tips

As a personal trainer, it’s important to take every measure possible to ensure both their and their client’s safety. Here are some personal trainer tips for risk assessment.

Identify All Potential Hazards

It’s important to make a list of all potential hazards in the working space before training clients. These can vary widely depending on what type of exercises and where the sessions are being held. Here are a few examples:

Surfaces: Your clients should check the floor and surface material they are working on to see if any potential areas could cause injury. In a gym, this could be things like inclines or bumps in the floor. Outside, check for holes or any other obstacles that could cause clients to fall or hurt themselves. Check for any signs of water or other hazards as well.

Exercise equipment: Trainers should list all of the equipment that they will use for the training and any risks associated with them. They should make sure they are in good condition and properly maintained.

Exercise Workouts: List all exercises and determine any risks associated with them.

Space: Ensure that there is enough space to perform all exercises without knocking anything over or causing any injury.

Temperature: Make sure the space is at a proper temperature and that they have access to water or other hydration drinks.

Decide Who Is at Risk

After identifying any hazards that are in the workout area, it’s important to note who might be at risk of being hurt and how it might happen. Are the trainer’s clients at risk? Is the property at risk of being damaged? Are people in public at risk of getting hurt?

Some things to consider when identifying these risks include:

  • The age of anyone participating in workouts
  • The physical ability of participants
  • Existing medical conditions or injuries
  • Knowledge and skills of anyone doing activities

These are all important factors that need to be considered when planning workout sessions.

Assess Risks and Take Action

Just being aware of who and what might cause injury or risk is just the first step. It’s important to take the necessary steps to get rid of any hazards before starting a workout. Planning things out preemptively is the best way to avoid unnecessary injuries or risks.

If your client sees water on the floor, make sure it is mopped up and that the area is completely dry and suitable for a workout. If there are any issues at a location that someone else manages, make sure to notify them immediately if there are any issues. If there is an issue with equipment, make sure to find a replacement before your client starts class.

Stay Safe With Fitness Instructor Insurance

This article is a great start for learning personal trainer risk management tips. However, it’s impossible to completely neutralize all risks when it comes to this line of work.

It’s important to make sure that your clients have liability insurance to protect their interests in case something bad happens. If you’d like to learn more or get a quote, read about personal trainer insurance here or contact us at:


Phone number: 800-257-5590
Email: info@primeis.com

Stay safe and reach out to us today!

Last updated 8/23/22

rick lindseyAuthored by Rick J. Lindsey, CEO, President, and Chairman of Prime Insurance Company

Rick Lindsey hails from Salt Lake City, Utah. He began working in the mailroom of his father’s Salt Lake City insurance firm, getting his introduction to the business that became his lifelong career. Lindsey quickly rose through the ranks while working in nearly every imaginable insurance industry job. As an entrepreneur, specialty lines underwriter, claims specialist, risk manager, and a licensed surplus lines broker, Rick Lindsey is highly skilled in all levels of leadership and execution. As he progressed on his career path, Rick discovered an urgent need for insurers willing to write policies for high-risk individuals and businesses. He was frequently frustrated that he could not provide the liability protection these entities desperately needed to safeguard their assets. He also formed the belief that insurance companies acted too quickly to settle frivolous claims. Lindsey decided to try a different approach. He started an insurance company and became the newly formed entity’s CEO. This opportunity has enabled Rick to fill a void in the market and provide a valuable service to businesses, individuals, and insurance agents who write high-risk business. Prime Insurance also specializes in helping individuals and businesses who live a lifestyle or participate in activities that make them difficult for traditional carriers to insure. If you’ve been denied, non-renewed, or canceled coverage, don’t give up quite yet. Chances are Prime Insurance can help.


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