Exploding Exercise Ball Can Cause Injury

Exercise Ball
An inflatable ball like the one pictured can be a useful component of an exercise regiment, but if it bursts during use it can be dangerous.

Have you ever used a stability ball while exercising?  These inflated spheres have become quite popular with athletes, gym rats, home gym users, even school kids in physical education class. Doug Landau finds these “physio balls” extremely useful for balance training.  “Stability balls” have come into vogue with athletes like Landau who are looking for safe, productive core strength and balance exercises.

But what would happen if a ball burst while you were using it?  A Sioux Falls, South Dakota man found out when, while exercising at home in 2011, the ball he was using burst, sending him crashing to the floor.  According to a complaint he filed with the ball’s manufacturer, he “landed on his chin, chest, and pelvis and sustained injuries that required him to be immediately transported to the emergency room and hospitalized for his injuries.”

This is not the first incident of an exploding exercise ball.  NBA star Francisco Garcia was injured when a ball he was using burst.  And in 2009, a New York company received 47 complaints from consumers about exploding balls which were marketed as “anti-burst.”  Three million balls were recalled.

The Sioux Falls man’s complaint claims the company was negligent in failing to warn consumers of the potential for the ball to explode.  The claim also says the product has a defective design and was improperly manufactured.

These cases raise some interesting questions for anyone who uses a stability ball:

  • Is the ball marked “anti-burst”?  If it is, it is supposed to slowly deflate to the floor rather than burst.
  • Have you followed manufacturer instructions for inflating the ball?  Overinflated balls are at more risk for exploding.
  • How is the ball being stored?  When a ball is placed near a heater, the latex or plastic can be damaged, increasing the risk of explosion.

Athletes lawyer Doug Landau always recommends inspecting any equipment for signs of wear or damage, and always using a product as instructed.  But sometimes, even when the right precautions are taken, a defective product or design can result in injury.

If you or someone you know has been injured by an exploding exercise ball or other defective product and there are questions as to what laws apply, email or call Abrams Landau, Ltd. at once (703-796-9555).

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