Defendants in balancing ball case insist plaintiff 'waived right to sue'

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Nov. 7, 2013, 10:22am

GALVESTON - 24 Hours Fitness USA Inc. and one of its personal trainers blamed for a woman's fall off a balancing ball at its Friendswood location in an August lawsuit recently answered the allegations, according to court records.

The defendants submitted a three-page original answer into Deborah Christensen's personal injury suit on Oct. 28, directly denying responsibility for her reported injuries.

Christensen asserts during a session on Aug. 24, 2011, Indalecio “Andy” Rivera instructed her to stand on the aforementioned balance ball.

According to the suit, she was instructed to step off the balance ball and "she lost her balance and fell backward onto the floor."

The original petition further shows that the complainant had no previous experience using the balance ball, but Rivera purportedly failed to spot her.

It adds she “immediately felt excruciating pain” in her low back and pelvis area, and a physician who was at the gym determined she was in need of an ambulance.

In response, the respondents insist the subject incident was "the result of the conduct of a third person or persons over whom the defendants possessed no control and for whose conduct the defendants are not responsible or liable."

They state Christensen "has voluntarily waived the right to sue for the damages she now claims... and/or has released the defendants from any liability for the same."

Attorney Maulik P. Shah of Brown Sims in Houston is representing the defendants.

Case No. 13-CV-1091

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