Fitness professionals have a very important job in today’s society. As we are all becoming more health conscious, more individuals are deciding to take a closer look at their health and fitness. Many fitness professionals tend to get the bulk of their clients through either word of mouth or social media marketing. Social media has probably been the most pivotal in many of our favorite fitness professional’s careers.
During the morning, I scroll through my Instagram and see all of my fitness professional friends training their clients at the wee hours of the morning. In the back of my mind, I come up with several different legal scenarios that can arise from that single training session.
Instead of being THAT attorney friend, I decided that I would write a blog post that will help all of the fitness professionals around the world get their legal ducks in a row.
Here are 5 legal tips that can help:
- Waiver and Release of Liability Form: Every Fitness professional should have their clients sign this document. This document should indicate that the client will not sue you in the event that they are injured at your facilities or while you are training them. This document should also indicate that the client has had the opportunity to seek a physician prior to training. This document is very vital because it is a contractual waiver and a release of any liability. However, there are a few instances in which these forms absolutely do not work. For instance, if you intentionally inflict harm on your client, this form will not relieve you from any liability.
- Model Release: One of the classic mistakes of many fitness professionals is that they fail to have a model release document that essentially allows for any still photos or any video footage to be taken during the course of the training session. These model release contracts should also allow the fitness professional to use the footage or photos in any marketing materials. You may be saying, “BUT SHAUNETTE! IT IS ONLY INSTAGRAM!” I urge you to obtain permission to use someone’s photos on your social media or you will run the risk of being sued.
- Protecting Your ASSets: Many fitness professionals simply LOVE what they do and they want to share it with the world. However, some fail to protect themselves from personal liability. If you are a fitness professional and you are not associated with a gym, then it is best that you create a corporate entity in which you train your clients under. This way, you will be shielded from personal liability if you are ever sued. This means, that if you are protected under an entity structure that provides limited protection, then an individual or a company that recovers a judgment against you cannot go after your personal assets.
- Protect your Intellectual Property: One way to capitalize off of your fitness expertise is to protect AND profit from your intellectual property. If you have a specific workout plan that yields great results from your clients, you may want to obtain Copyright protection. You can also record the workout and sell it as a workout DVD. If you want to profit from this, you can license it to larger brands and obtain royalties from your work.
- Insurance: The final tip is that you should get professional liability insurance. This will cover you if you are ever sued. Many insurance companies will even defend a lawsuit against you.
I must urge you that it is very important to shield yourself from personal liability. Following these 5 tips will get you started in the right direction. I have created a contract bundle that includes the Waiver and Release of Liability form including a model release form. It is important to have these documents in place to protect yourself. It is as equally as important to hire an attorney to continue to ensure that your business ventures are legally protected. If you would like to purchase our contract bundle click here! If you would like more information on how our office can assist you in making sure your business is not exposed to any legal pitfalls, please call our office at 813.444.4156
Don’t forget to take advantage of our contract bundle at a very reduced rate. Click here to purchase!
**DISCLAIMER: THIS BLOG POST DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY CLIENT RELATIONSHIP. THIS POST IS FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY.**