As a personal trainer and fitness instructor in a commercial or private gym, you'll be required to perform workplace risk assessments on a regular basis, both for your classes and as part of a General Managers role, should you be adopting various occupations within the company. Performing these assessments not only ensures the safety of staff and members, but it also covers you in case of an accident and will be a basic requirement of your fitness and business insurance. If you're new to the role, this might be a daunting experience. However, fear not. It's a simple procedure with minimum paperwork that can be done quickly and easily. However spending the time doing it thoroughly will always give you peace of mind.
As a General Manager, you'll be required to complete a risk assessment at regular intervals, or whenever there are significant changes to the building that could affect the staff and members safety inside. Usually a company will have its own forms on which to record your findings, and they should also have a check list to ensure that all major and minor risks are evaluated. When working through the list you will need to establish the following: what are the hazards, how can they be mitigated and is the risk acceptable.
For example, gyms can often be busy places, and so a natural area of risk would be potential blockages for the fire escape. You must establish how to limit any blockages, perhaps by moving equipment or placing signs showing the quickest fire exit route, and then re-evaluate the risk. Afterwards, record your findings and highlight anything that could not be mitigated and justify why it is or isn't an acceptable risk. By having this information recorded, you can then re-visit it at a later date and see whether the situation has changed. As a fitness instructor you'll also do smaller workplace risk assessments before classes; however, these will often be visual and concerned with safety equipment.
Doing an outdoor bootcamp or other training session outside of the main building requires a similar approach to a regular workplace assessment, but the environment affords you much less control. Therefore, extra precautions must be taken. In this instance, you will need to check the ground for hazards such as dog faeces, broken glass or dangerous terrain, like hidden mounds or slippery surfaces. If you require members to walk to a specific location, you'll also need to risk assess the route and, in some cases, escort people there. This type of risk assessment is more likely going to require some sort of paperwork, and your general manager should have the relevant forms for you.