Are you in VIC? If not, please change below.

In your state, you are required to confirm you wish to access this information. Please enter 'QLD' or 'WA' in the field below to continue.

No thanks

Barbara Petrie’s story

Inside a gym | Shine Lawyers

Fifty-two year-old Brisbane mother, Barbara Petrie just wanted to get back in shape. Looking to get fit and healthy, she signed up to her local gym. What she got instead, was a lifetime of pain, fear and dependence.

“They’ve taken my health, they’ve taken my freedom and they’ve taken my peace of mind.”

When Barbara joined the gym, all she wanted was to keep things simple and have a little fun – a run on the treadmill and a few Zumba classes was all Barbara needed. However, she was told that for safety reasons, personal training was required.

Barb was coming to the end of her first training session when her life changed forever.

Reverse crunching on a bench, Barbara began to feel pain in her back. When she informed her trainer of the pain in her spine, she was told to keep going – the more it hurts, the better it is. So Barbara pushed on and kept crunching. Then, the pain intensified.

“It was just an explosion of pain in my back,” Barbara said, looking back on that day with her trainer. “It was awful. I had tears coming down the side of my face.”

Putting on a brave facade, Barbara hobbled out of her training session believing that with a few days’ rest, she’d be back in the gym. Little did she know, the extreme pressure from lifting her legs had ruptured two discs in her spine.

Her trainer told her via text that her pain was to be expected. It was just standard muscle soreness. But when Barbara finally visited her doctor two weeks later, the true severity of her injuries was exposed. An MRI confirmed a prolapsed disc in Barbara’s L4 and a damaged L5. Urgent surgery was needed.

doctor-looking-xray

Two years on and Barbara has endured two rounds of spinal surgery.

“They shaved the disc and had to clean all the nerves because there was debris in there. I was told it’s not a new back,” she said.

Although able to walk, Barbara can’t bend over and can barely get four hours of sleep a night because of the pain. She treads a dangerously fine line between being pain-free and pain-killer dependent.

“Constant pain. Anxiety. Always frightened I’m going to hurt myself. I barely go out of the house,” she says, describing her life post-injury.

woman-looking-window

With the help of Shine Lawyers, Barbara is now seeking compensation for her pain, suffering and loss of wages. She hopes compensation will enable her to move on with her life and regain some of her lost independence.

Barbara’s case serves as an important warning for anyone signing up with a gym or personal trainer.

“It’s a booming industry,” says Barbara’s lawyer, Shine’s Stuart Le Grand. “This is a timely reminder for anyone engaging in gym activities to ensure they appropriately select their personal trainer, and that their trainer is qualified and well-versed in their legal obligations.” Click here for more tips on how to ensure you stay safe during your workout.

Because if something goes wrong during your training session, it’s not just your workout that can come to an end.

Shine Lawyers – Your local legal experts

If you or a loved one has sustained a gym-related injury, help is available. Gyms and personal trainers have a legal responsibility not to push clients beyond their physical limits. If they do, and you get hurt, you may have a claim for compensation. One of Shine’s legal experts can assess your case, inform you of all your available options and help you access the care and support you need to get back on your feet and back in the gym.

Get in touch today for more information on how Shine Lawyers can help you.

Written by Shine Lawyers on . Last modified: March 14, 2018.

Join the discussion

Share this article:

There are 0 comments. Be the first!

Dale’s story: How going the extra mile can make a big difference

In October 2016, Luke Pearcy’s client Dale was involved in a cycling accident with a motorist. It wasn’t the early morning ride he had planned, instead he was knocked off his bike and suffered a fractured coccyx (that’s the tailbone at the base of his spine). Initially this case looked like it would be a […]

Read more

Silicosis: The silent killer

As a stonemason, Karl had no idea silica dust rising from the engineered stone he worked with could cost him his health. Now at just 39 years old, Karl suffers from rheumatoid arthritis and silicosis – a progressive, irreversible lung disease caused by inhaling silica dust. The dangers of engineered stone Karl links these illnesses […]

Read more

Department of Veteran’s Affairs: Catastrophic negligence

Fifty-six… That’s the number of Australian Veterans who have taken their lives this year. They are fifty-six too many, but sadly these victims are neither the first nor the last. Over the past 41 years, veterans and their families have been crying out to the Department of Veteran’s Affairs (DVA), desperately seeking help – help […]

Read more