Notice: January 1, 2019 — Federally Mandated Gym Inspection

On January 1st, 2019 the Sports Facility Safety Act will go into effect which will mandate certified inspection of all participant sports facilities to record with their state government department of health a facility safety inspection report.  To date 16 states have the inspection reports available on line.  All sports facilities whether for adults or children that are teaching or training a sport as defined in the SFSA must comply or face financial penalty and/or closure.

For years I have been suggesting through articles and in group talks that the day was coming where there would be an agency that would be charged with the task of keeping our gyms safe.  I’ve stated the more we can get ahead of the curve, the better we would be when the mandatory regulations show up.  Many gym owners agreed and have implemented procedures for daily, weekly, and monthly gym service and inspection.

We’ve looked for ways to simplify the process with the use of preprinted check lists, converted home inspection apps, and the hiring of outside professionals to complete the routine inspections.  My philosophy has always been 1 – 1 – 1. 

1 – One time every day visually inspect every piece of gym equipment that will be used    that day,

1 – One time every month put a wrench on every nut or bolt within reach on every apparatus in the gym

1 – One time (at the minimum) per year have all equipment inspected by an outside professional.

Of course each of these steps should be followed by a recording of the inspection to create a paper or digital trail to give proof of your efforts to maintain a safe facility. These are likely not the only steps to keeping your gym safe and inviting, but it would be a good start.

Recently we uncovered a simpler way of completing these inspections using your smart phone and computer program that most of you already have.

1 – Using your phone, take a picture of each piece of equipment and download them to a thumb drive.

2 – Drop each of those pictures into a separate slide in PowerPoint which is a free program with most computers.

3 – Add a text box to each slide with the pertinent information on that piece of equipment.   With each inspection, add a new dated text box.

Now you have a simple file that can be saved off site and shared with your insurance agent and any other interested party.  This seems like a simple and worthwhile practice to turn into a habit before the state inspectors show up at your door.

By the way, the title and first paragraph of this article are NOT true, but are examples of what may be around the corner if we don’t initiate some type of inspection process on our own.  If you already have this or your own inspection program in place, please share you club name and email with me so I can share with others as you are and should be an inspiration for others.  Thanks

Make it a great day!

Steve Cook
AAI National Sales Director