Planet Fitness is hoping to get DeKalb County teenagers physically fit in a positive way.
The popular gym chain is opening a mini fitness center within the Salvation Army Atlanta Peachcrest Boys & Girls Club on 3500 Sherrydale Lane in Decatur. It will be the chain’s first “Mini Judgment Free Zone” in the metro Atlanta area.
The new facility was built by local Planet Fitness staff and will provide teens the ability to work out in a safe, neutral place, according to a news release.
The new gym is a part of Planet Fitness’ national “The Judgment Free Generation” initiative, which works to combat bullying among youth.
More than a third of the schools in Georgia teaching middle and high school students told the state they didn’t discipline any students for bullying in the 2017-18 school year, according to a Channel 2 Action News investigation.
At those same schools, more than 16,000 students say they were bullied at least three times in just one month, according to health surveys. And 8,000 said they were bullied many times, or every day.
In DeKalb County, Lithonia Middle School reported an 18 percent bullying rate, the highest among the schools surveyed in the county, according to the annual Georgia Health Survey. Elementary schools were not a part of the survey.
The gym will celebrate its opening Nov. 29 from 5 to 7 p.m. with special guest Atlanta Hawks’ mascot, Harry the Hawk, who will take pictures with the children.
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