Basingstoke woman takes six figure payout after being seriously injured in karate lesson (From Andover Advertiser)
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Basingstoke woman takes six figure payout after being seriously injured in karate lesson
1:48pm Monday 28th October 2013 in Basingstoke
A WOMAN has won a six-figure payout after suing a Basingstoke karate instructor who floored her with a leg sweep.
Rachel Phillips suffered a terrible knee injury after she “went down like a sack of spuds” while sparring with Bryan Andrews, the owner of the Shin Gi Tai Martial Arts Academy, in Viables, in April 2010.
The 42-year-old mother-of-three is still recovering from the injury three years on, having suffered a dislocated and torn left knee cap, ruptured ligaments and severe bone bruising.
Now, Mrs Phillips, of Arcadia Close, Beggarwood, Basingstoke, has received the undisclosed compensation in an out-of-court settlement after Mr Andrews admitted liability for the injury.
She said: “I am relieved that it is all over. It has never been about winning the damages – it has been about wanting to get back what I have lost.
“The children have had to endure seeing their mum going from bubbly and active to always lying in bed and being depressed for the best part of a year-and-a-half.”
The incident took place after one of Mrs Phillips’ first classes at the academy, in Jays Close, Viables.
She said she felt flattered when Mr Andrews offered to spar with her after the lesson to teach her the difference between Karate and Taekwondo, in which Mrs Phillips had some experience.
During the sparring, Mrs Phillips said she landed a “lucky punch” that hit the instructor on the chin, after which the pair faced each other and nodded.
She said: “The next thing I knew was that he stepped forward and swept my leg away and I went down like a sack of spuds.
“I knew straight away that something bad had happened as I had a real sharp pain that ran from my knee to my ankle.”
Doctors said her injury was something they would expect to see from car crash victims. Mrs Phillips had three operations in the space of 15 months, had to wear a brace for that period and used crutches up until four months ago.
She has funded some of her own physiotherapy, despite being made redundant in her first year of her recovery.
Happily, she is now well enough to work with her husband Jonathan at their new business venture baby-REFLUX, at the Basingstoke Business Centre, but has been left with arthritis and her left knee is painful, particularly on cold mornings.
She said: “I do not think Mr Andrews meant to hurt me. I think it was done with the thought of finishing off the demonstration with a finishing move, and it just went horribly wrong.”
Tracey Benson, of Mrs Phillips’ lawyers Slater & Gordon, said Mr Andrews had “clearly behaved reck- lessly and negligently” by performing the move on her without warning after a lesson.
The Gazette tried to contact Mr Andrews, who won Professional Coach of the Year at the Basingstoke and Deane Sports Awards in 2011, but he did not return our calls.