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It’s Safety, That’s What!

As an owner of a small gym, I am cheap (let’s say frugal) about business expenses and I’m the first to admit it. And it can be dull and boring to protect against the unknown – I’d rather experience the present and spend money on something that can be touched and enjoyed, like a new piece of equipment. But when it comes to the protection of the greatest asset we have – our customers and staff – money must be spent to create and maintain a safe environment and to protect against those ugly possibilities – like fire or medical emergencies or infections or accidents.

What safety factors do we address?

Insurance.  Three types that we continue on an ongoing basis – Liability (to protect against injury in our environment), Bonding (to protect our customers), and Workmen’s Compensation (to protect our employees). A special note regarding bonding insurance to the customer who pays in full for a membership: if the gym closes without notice the week after you pay for a two year membership, the gym’s bonding insurance guarantees a return of your money due.  Our evidence of bonding insurance certification is posted on our bulletin board.

Fire Safeguards.  Our gym is inspected annually by the township (thanks Cindy!); any deficiencies are noted and corrected (thanks Mike!). Fire Extinguishers are on site and are also  inspected and certified annually. The photos below show a fire extinguisher mounted on wall behind a customer, and another customer pointing to a lighted exit sign.

Equipment Safety.  In any gym, there are pieces of equipment that can cause injury. Treadmills have always caused me a bit of trepidation, so we have a treadmill safety protocol that is posted on the wall;  staff and customers are trained accordingly.  Our resistance(strength) classes are instructional in nature, to communicate safe use of weights to our ladies. And each woman who joins our gym is provided an orientation to her exercise routine and use of equipment. Wealso  have a preventive maintenance program, in which an equipment specialist (thanks Nate!) comes in routinely to inspect and service all pieces of exercise equipment.

 Cleanliness.  We all know how germs are spread, and that “hands” are important.  Disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer should always be readily available, as they are at Empower Fitness. And there should be a regular cleaning maintenance process, so that the environment stays fresh and as germ-free as possible.

Hazard Surveillance and Risk Management.    In my twenty-one years in hospital administration, I was fortunate to have been responsible for the Safety and Risk Management Departments.  There I learned from Safety Professionals about the importance of hazard surveillance; that is, regularly monitoring your environment for potential hazards and correcting or minimizing them before something bad happens.  I also learned about managing risks, and there are definite risks in a gym environment that may cause accidents to happen. But when an accident happens, it is important to promptly review the circumstances in a factual manner, and implement improvements, as indicated, to minimize the probability of that event happening again.

Medical Emergencies.     First aid supplies are readily accessible for the most common needs for a band aid or ice pack. We also have an AED (automatic external defibrillator) on site, in the event of a medical emergency.  All staff are trained on a regular basis in the use of both CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation) and in use of the AED. Related to the AED, we are part of an ongoing safety monitoring program to ensure that the AED is in good working order, related supplies are current, and that medical moniitoring is immediately available if needed.  The photo below shows some of the staff at a recent CPR/AED training session.



  1. Joan,
    This is all very valuable information and I’m so thankful for all this protection while doing my routines. Everyone SHOULD know how well they are protected and be thankful for it.

  2. Great instructor! The various life-saving processes have stuck with me better because the instructor managed the information and techniques in a linear, easy to follow sequence.

    Thanks to the Brames for always doing there best to keep us well-trained by using true professionals!

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Lawrence Shopping Center
(near Burlington Coat Factory)
2495 Route 1 at Texas Ave.
Lawrenceville, NJ 08648

Contact info:

phone: 609.882.4500
fax: 609.406.1471