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Training Brief -- BFS Safety and Liability Paper -- Guidelines to Keep Your Athletes Safe

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Guidelines to Keep Your Athletes Safe
and Minimize the Risk of Legal Trouble

The first step in developing a safe athletic program is education, which includes traditional physical education classes and continuing education programs such as Certifications. There is a common but unfortunate belief that when it comes to the possibility of getting sued, coaches have little to worry about. After all, most coaches are dedicated to helping athletes achieve their physical potential and would never consciously do harm. Everybody understands that coaches should be held in high regard because they are teachers - so, isn't it reasonable to expect their good intentions would be rewarded with a degree of "legal immunity" in the justice system? Not quite. America is an increasingly litigious society, and coaches are just as vulnerable as anyone else to becoming involved in a lawsuit.

There is no guaranteed way to avoid lawsuits. The fact is you can be sued by anyone, at any time, for just about any reason. That's the way our legal system works. Your aim should be to not give anyone a reason to want to sue you but at the same time to put yourself in the best possible position to win a lawsuit should you be sued...
Download the Full Paper Here.

Excerpted from the BFS Position Paper originally published in the January / February 2009 of the BFS Magazine.

BFS regularly publishes Position Papers on a variety of topics that are pertinent to coaching and developing strength and skill in athletes. Originally published in BFS Magazine we also make these papers available on the BFS Downloads Page at These downloadable PDF documents are optimized both web viewing and for desktop printing so that all coaches can use this information in their own work environment.

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