A California resident recently filed suit against SoulCycle for negligence after the instructor allegedly mocked and shamed her for slowing her speed during her first class. This caused the woman, Carmen Farias, to fall off her bike and dislocate her ankle. She alleged the incident rendered her “catastrophically injured.”
Farias attended the class at the Beverly Hills location in July 2014 with several coworkers. Angela Davis, popular among celebrity cyclers Oprah Winfrey, Kelly Rowland, and Demi Lovato, taught the class and performed the alleged shaming.
The lawsuit alleges that roughly 20 minutes into the class, Farias was holding dumbbells and biking in the standing position when she felt her legs weaken and tried to stop pedaling. The bike, however, kept spinning. She claims that Davis began mocking Farias personally for slowing down and yelled to the class: “we don’t take breaks.” Embarrassed for being singled out in front of her coworkers, Farias claims she continued to pedal and pick up speed.
However, her legs were shaking. Carmen knew she needed to stop the pedals from turning, but she could not figure out how. The lawsuit claims that Davis never informed the class members how to use the bike, such as how to stop the wheels or remove one’s feet from the pedals into which they are clipped.
The lawsuit claims that with her legs locked and shaking to the beat of blaring music in a dark room, Farias experienced “serious peril.” Tired, embarrassed, and confused, she fell off the bike’s saddle. But since Farias couldn’t stop the wheels from spinning or remove her feet from the pedals, her ankle dislocated while the wheels kept spinning, triggering feelings of “agony.” By the time the pedals stopped, Farias was hurt “catastrophically.” Farias alleges that her injury was due to Davis’ and SoulCycle’s negligence in failing to properly instruct her on how to use the bike as well as the unsafe design and maintenance of the bike.
Farias further alleges that she never signed a waiver. She left her copy on the office desk, and SoulCycle employees never asked her for it or checked.
A SoulCycle representative has refused to comment. A New York City SoulCycle instructor indicated that Farias should have remained on the balls of her feet while in the standing position and lifted her pedal stroke in order to remain stable and prevent her legs from weakening. Instructors also recommend breathing and upping the resistance, since spinning one’s legs fast can cause them to weaken and lose control.
The premises liability lawyers at the Neumann Law Group represent victims of accidents throughout the Los Angeles area. Call us at (213) 227-0001 for a free consultation.
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