Starting May 15, Planet Fitness, the gym known for its vibrant purple and yellow interior — and for Pizza Mondays — is starting its free High School Summer Pass once again. The popular program allows high school students ages 14 to 19 to go to any Planet Fitness gym for free. The promotion will run through August 31, 2023, around when kids return to school.
Planet Fitness first started the initiative in 2019 under the Teen Summer Challenge banner, hoping to offer teens a place for physical activity when things like school sports programs and gym classes are not in session. Sure, some families might have their kids signed up for an unholy amount of sports summer camps, but that’s not always an option for lower income families or kids who balk at organized activities.
Planet Fitness Summer Pass Scholarship Contest
On top of offering free access to the gym, the company is also giving away $200,000 to both high schools and students via a video contest that kids can enter once they’re pre-registered. Participating kids can make a 30-second video about their Summer Pass experience, post it on TikTok, and have a chance to win a $10,000 scholarship. Full details are here.
In order to register for the program, teens ages 14 to 17 must sign up with a parent or guardian’s permission. High schoolers 18 and over can sign up on their own. The program is also limited to one Planet Fitness location, so once you choose one of the 2,200 club locations, you have to stick with that one.
The benefits of exercising for teens
There are loads of physical and mental health benefits for teens who break a sweat with friends. Humans get a sweet boost of serotonin from both working out and from hanging with close friends and family. And, as Planet Fitness notes in its press release, almost 48% of teens struggled with mental health issues for the first time during the pandemic. Hanging out with friends and burning off some steam could be beneficial to those looking for a bit of relief from pandemic-related anxiety.
And don’t worry about whether or not your teen is too young to lift weights. According to the Mayo Clinic, if done correctly, strengthen training is great for any teen who wants to care for both their mental and physical health.
As with all workout regimens, especially with teens who face a slew of unrealistic body standards, it’s important to make sure your teen has a healthy relationship with both physical exercise and food before letting them live their best gym rat lives this summer.
If you don’t have a Planet Fitness in your area, try calling around to your local gyms — while Planet Fitness has the largest free summertime gym program for kids, other facilities also offer programs and passes for kids over the summer.
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