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MatsuShinshii
Green Belt
Green Belt

Joined: 15 Aug 2016
Posts: 369
Location: Kentucky
Styles: Matsumura Shorin Ryu, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo

PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:32 pm    Post subject: Doctors Release Question Reply with quote

My wife and I recently went out with a friend of hers and her husband and started talking about interests. When he found out I taught martial arts he asked if I have my students get releases from their doctors to train.

I probably looked a little perplexed and asked why? He said that his school required all students to get a doctors release to participate in any sports (he is a gym teacher) because of the liability it brings to the school.

I remember signing permission slips for my kids and taking them to the doctors for physicals to play sports but never thought of it in this way. I am thinking of implementing this for my 16 to 18 year old students.

Do any of you require your students to get a doctors release to train?

Do you think this applies mainly to students under the age of 18 or to all students?
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LLLEARNER
Blue Belt
Blue Belt

Joined: 10 Feb 2016
Posts: 323
Location: Central Maine

PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now that you bring it up I now notice the lack of sign-off. I used them when I taught SCUBA diving. Primarily they focused on heart and breathing function. Being underwater adds a level of risk combined with potential cold and pressure related issues.
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Spartacus Maximus
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 01 Jun 2014
Posts: 1250

Styles: Shorin ryu

PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The only reason besides school rules that would make it mandatory for a person to get a doctor's approval would be if the person concerned has some kind of chronic injury or preexisting condition. This is obviously not applicable to people who have no such health issues. Many sports clubs and Mary arts schools require special insurance tailored to the kind of activity and potential risks, but a mandatory medical doctor's release sounds unusual.
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JR 137
KF Sempai
KF Sempai

Joined: 10 May 2015
Posts: 1368
Location: In the dojo
Styles: Seido Juku

PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I haven't come across any MA schools requiring a doctor's release upon enrollment. It reminds me of my graduate sport law class - as long as as you're doing what's considered the norm and in your field (could be interpreted as MA teaching), you shouldn't be held liable. Meaning if pretty much no one requires it, it's not a liability on your part.

Regardless of this, ask your legal team what they think.

All MA schools I've come across require students to sign waivers. What did I learn in sport law? Waivers never hold up in court.

To be honest though, you should probably require one from everyone. I don't see the 16-18 year old crowd being any more of a risk that anyone else. Actually, I see them being the lowest risk. If I ran a dojo and were to require any age group to have a doctor's release, it would be 50 and up (no offense to you "old people" ).

I'd also require it from anyone who discloses health problems to me, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, epilepsy, etc. I wouldn't require this as a way to protect myself (although it would), but to protect the prospective student. Putting liability aside for a minute, do you want someone having a catastrophic incident while training?

At the end of the day, ask your legal team. They'll know how to protect you better than I will.
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Nidan Melbourne
KF Sempai
KF Sempai

Joined: 21 Aug 2013
Posts: 1981
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Styles: Goju-Ryu, BJJ, Balintawak Arnis

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Normally it is important to get a medical release. Not many owners would be willing to enforce it because it may mean fewer students would be willing to sign up.

And that would mean that it could be harder to balance the books at the end of the month.

What I do with any new student is doing a risk stratification which means that i could get an idea of whether it is safe for them to start or for them to get a check up first for their own health.
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 12352
Location: Houston, TX and/or Van Nuys, CA
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All students sign a waiver before they're allowed on the floor because my insurance requires it; risks are always at a MA school, no matter what steps are taking to minimize them.

Now, if a student tells me of a medical/physical issue, then I'll refer make to my insurance company. If the insurance company insists on it, a doctors approval, than I'll require it as well. One thing I learned was, DO NOT NOT EVER FOLLOW A DOCTORS INSTRUCTIONS!! Fastest way to close your doors, and more importantly, the fastest way to seriously injure a student. Once I've the doctors approval, and the insurances thumbs up, it's up to me from there. That's one of the reasons, while it's a small reason, I don't use contracts. If I've a uneasy feeling in my gut, no, that student will not be allowed to train.

Protect the student...protect the dojo!!



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MatsuShinshii
Green Belt
Green Belt

Joined: 15 Aug 2016
Posts: 369
Location: Kentucky
Styles: Matsumura Shorin Ryu, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JR 137 wrote:
If I ran a dojo and were to require any age group to have a doctor's release, it would be 50 and up (no offense to you "old people" ).


Ouch! I need to go to my doctor to get a release to teach now.
I guess that's what I get for asking a question. Honesty that stings.
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MatsuShinshii
Green Belt
Green Belt

Joined: 15 Aug 2016
Posts: 369
Location: Kentucky
Styles: Matsumura Shorin Ryu, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nidan Melbourne wrote:
Normally it is important to get a medical release. Not many owners would be willing to enforce it because it may mean fewer students would be willing to sign up.

And that would mean that it could be harder to balance the books at the end of the month.

What I do with any new student is doing a risk stratification which means that i could get an idea of whether it is safe for them to start or for them to get a check up first for their own health.


That is interesting that you require a release. I have never required it nor has my association. However after the question was posed I can definitely see merit in it.

We have waivers but as previously said, they don't hold much weight in court.

Thanks for the input. Worth considering.
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MatsuShinshii
Green Belt
Green Belt

Joined: 15 Aug 2016
Posts: 369
Location: Kentucky
Styles: Matsumura Shorin Ryu, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sensei8 wrote:
One thing I learned was, DO NOT NOT EVER FOLLOW A DOCTORS INSTRUCTIONS!! Fastest way to close your doors, and more importantly, the fastest way to seriously injure a student.


Sensei8, can you elaborate on this statement? I guess I'm having a senior moment but I do not get what you are driving at.
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DWx
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 17 Jan 2007
Posts: 5655
Location: UK
Styles: Tae Kwon Do & Yang family Tai Chi

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Over here I think the general trend is to have them sign a waiver that says that their doctor hasn't advised them not to do this type of activity and that to their knowledge they are for and healthy. If they have a pretty existing condition then they should seek medical advice before pursuing.
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