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HIGH-INTENSITY EXERCISE AND THE LEGAL LIABILITY RISKS

Eickhoff-Shemek, JoAnn M. Ph.D., FACSM, FAWHP; Keiper, Margaret C. Ph.D.

doi: 10.1249/01.FIT.0000453586.66931.e0
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LEARNING OBJECTIVES: Through a description and analysis of two negligence lawsuits involving high-intensity exercise programs, readers of this article will obtain an understanding and appreciation of (a) legal and risk management concepts related to negligence, (b) legal liability risks that exist in high-intensity exercise programs, and (c) risk management strategies that can be developed and implemented to minimize legal liability risks associated with high-intensity exercise programs.

Two negligence lawsuits involving high-intensity exercise programs are described in this article to help fitness trainers and managers learn about the legal liability risks associated with these programs and important risk management strategies they can develop and implement to help minimize these liability risks.

JoAnn M. Eickhoff-Shemek, Ph.D., FACSM, FAWHP, is a professor of exercise science at the University of South Florida. Her teaching and research focus on legal liability and risk management issues in the health/fitness field. She is the lead author of a comprehensive textbook entitled Risk Management for Health/Fitness Professionals: Legal Issues and Strategies. Dr. Eickhoff-Shemek served as the Legal Columnist for ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal® for 10 years (2001–2010). She is an ACSM-certified HFD, HFS, and ETT and a fellow of ACSM. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1995.

Margaret C. Keiper, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the physical education and sport department at Central Michigan University where she instructs at both the undergraduate and the graduate levels. One of her research interests is risk management strategies in extreme fitness activities. She is a part of the Meijer State Games of Michigan (MSGM) oversight committee and oversees risk management strategies for the MSGM. She received her Ph.D. in Sports Administration from the University of New Mexico.

Disclosure: The authors declare no conflicts of interest and do not have any financial disclosures.

© 2014 American College of Sports Medicine.