Planet Fitness Lunk Alarm: Why Is It There?

In this post, I will be explaining the planet fitness lunk alarm and everything you need to know about it.

While it may seem dumb at first, it is possible the planet fitness lunk alarm actually helps new gym-goers not be intimidated when at the gym.

But, what is the dreaded ‘lunk alarm’? And is it actually creating an incredibly toxic environment to work out in?

The planet fitness lunk alarm, you better not make any noise in this gym! https:/www.vekhayn.com
The planet fitness lunk alarm, you better not make any noise in this gym!

What is The Planet Fitness Lunk Alarm?

The planet fitness lunk alarm is a loud siren that goes off when members: grunt too loud, drop their weights, wear “inappropriate” clothing, or intimidate others.

The alarm is controlled by the staff, so it’s really up to the staff whether they think it is acceptable or not.

This means there isn’t a certain volume threshold that a microphone picks up for the lunk alarm to go off. If a staff member thinks it is too loud, they sound the alarm.

Honestly, I would probably only send off the lunk alarm if someone wasn’t on the best bodybuilding program ever made, Arnold’s Blueprint to Mass.

Here's a list of how you can set off the planet fitness lunk alarm: grunting loudly, dropping weights, inappropriate clothing. [https://www.vekhayn.com]
Here’s a list of how you can set off the planet fitness lunk alarm: grunting loudly, dropping weights, inappropriate clothing. [https://www.vekhayn.com]

What’s The Purpose of The Planet Fitness Lunk Alarm?

The planet fitness lunk alarm is incredibly controversial.

Many would say the alarm is useless because a gym is supposed to be loud at times. You never had a PE class in middle school that wasn’t filled with screaming, so why should the gym be quiet either?

However, a different purpose arises from the planet fitness commercials.

The lunk alarm planet fitness commercials talk about how the lunk alarm protects people who just started going to the gym.

The actors talk about how they had experiences with scary people or loud noises. The staff then tells them that the lunk alarm keeps them safe.

So overall, the alarm goes off when people do “lunking” behavior. -But, we’ll cover what that is later.

But- to show you, let’s watch a few of the commercials.

Lunk Alarm Planet Fitness Commercial

Over the years many lunk alarm planet fitness commercials have come out. Here is an excellent compilation of some of the funnier ones.

Funny Lunk Alarm Planet Fitness Commercial compilation.

These commercials are pretty funny but also highlight the point of the lunk alarm.

They want people to sign up for their gym and not be scared to do so. Many people have had bad gym experiences with intimidating people and loud noises, and they want to have a positive environment.

You may have seen the Planet Fitness commercial I pick things up, which is where they make fun of big bodybuilders having “small brains”. They depict Arnold saying “I PICK THINGS UP” in a caveman’s voice.

“I pick things up and put them down” planet fitness commercial. Making fun of bodybuilders. Ironic for a “judgement free zone”.

Lunk Alarm Meme

The alarm is so funny that Kent’s Garage Gym on YouTube made a famous lunk alarm meme criticizing the absurd alarm.

Lunk alarm meme video detailing what is a ‘lunk’ in a funny way.

There are other ways the lunk alarm meme format is used aswell.

For instance, this one meme describes how doing things on accident will cause the alarm to go off.

A lunk alarm meme explaining how dropping the weight on accident will screw you over.
A lunk alarm meme explaining how dropping the weight on accident will screw you over.

The lunk alarm meme is actually funny because it highlights how the alarm will screw you over even if you’re not “lunking”.

Kent’s Garage Gym also makes fun of the planet fitness lunk alarm by making a joke that the alarm goes off when he drops a pen. Saying “I love the doomsday alarm” whenever any sound is made in the gym.

The Planet Fitness Lunk Alarm Actually Creates a TOXIC Environment.

The goal of the lunk alarm is to literally shame those who intimidate others, but most of the time it actually creates a toxic environment.

The Planet Fitness Lunk Alarm actually creates a toxic environment. [https://www.vekhayn.com]
The Planet Fitness Lunk Alarm actually creates a toxic environment.

In 2006, Albert Argibay, a massive bodybuilder and state corrections officer was told to leave Planet Fitness after grunting.

The manager called the police, canceled his membership, and all the people in the gym taunted him for being a “lunker”.

Now how exactly is bullying someone that’s working hard in the gym helping anybody? And how does that create a positive zone?

The Alarm is Thousands of Times Louder Than The Grunting

Furthermore, the club set off an alarm with Tim Gunter (an absolute unit of a firefighter) started grunting.

If you haven’t been weight-lifting for long, when you need to press a new personal max, you typically have to grunt.

They set off the planet fitness lunk alarm, AKA a nuclear raid siren and about triggered Tim Gunter’s PTSD. Tim Gunter is a firefighter, and he felt like he needed to respond to a fire in progress.

As someone in a firefighting cadet program, I can attest that when you hear that alarm, it’s like everything in your brain stops.

So, how is setting off this war siren across the gym supposed to be better than having someone grunt quietly in the corner?

The Lunk Alarm is Incredibly Sexist

You would think that this lunk alarm would have enforced, strict rules that made people feel comfortable at the gym, right?

Well, nope.

According to Vanessa Golembewski, planet fitness staff never set off the lunk alarm when she was sexually harassed and catcalled.

As mentioned earlier, the planet fitness lunk alarm is only set off by the employees.

Vanessa Golembewski was sexually harassed at Planet Fitness and the staff told her, "come at different times". [https://www.vekhayn.com]
Vanessa Golembewski was sexually harassed at Planet Fitness and the staff told her, “come at different times”.

This means if you have a super strict guy in the gym, it will go off any time you make any noise. Or, if you have a creep, you’ll be scared to even be in the gym itself.

When Vanessa contacted Planet Fitness, they told her she needed to come at different hours.

So look at that. You can either have the lunk alarm fix your gym experience, or ruin it.

And there’s no way of figuring out which gym is going to make you have a great workout, or never want to lift again.

Definition of “Lunking”

Since the planet fitness lunk alarm only screams at you when you’re so-called, “lunking”, let’s figure out what lunking actually is!

What is lunking at planet fitness? [https://www.vekhayn.com]
What is lunking at planet fitness?

There isn’t a “real” definition of lunking, in fact, it’s a made-up word by planet fitness.

It’s possible that the word ‘lunking’ derives from ‘lunk-head’, a 19th-century insult for ‘short-witted’ person.

So, we have to turn to Urban Dictionary for our definition.

Urban Dictionary definition of lunk.
Urban Dictionary definition of lunk.

So, there you have it. A made-up word used by Planet Fitness to describe someone dropping weights, judging others, and grunting.

But, if they make up a word with a definition, how fair is that? What happens if you do something they don’t like and they call it lunking? You have no defense, this means if they don’t like you because of skin color, they can say you were “lunking”.

Getting Kicked out of Planet Fitness

The planet fitness lunk alarm is such a joke that many people get kicked out just for lifting. But some have turned it into a game, seeing who gets kicked out first.

Roughly a year ago Brian Shaw (a 4x strongman winner) went into a planet fitness and was kicked out, and he wasn’t even doing anything bad. Just Lifting.

Brian Shaw kicked out of planet fitness.

This turned into a game for some people, trying to set off the lunk alarm on purpose and get kicked out.

Getting kicked out of planet fitness on purpose.

While the behavior may seem rude at first, the reaction is strange. -Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not defending the prankster, but stuff like this happens to people that aren’t trying to break the rules at all.

The “prankster” is never warned of what he is doing and just screamed at to get out.

Strangely enough, in many gyms, a lot of people will have their shirts off or be grunting.

If Planet Fitness staff ever saw a video of what a powerlifting gym was like, they would have a heart attack.

Planet Fitness Membership Agreement

The planet fitness membership agreement is confusing.

You look at dodgy cancellation fees, strange wording, and weird rules. Let’s dive deep into it. Otherwise, the planet fitness lunk alarm may start going off.

The Planet Fitness Membership Agreement [https://www.vekhayn.com]
The Planet Fitness Membership Agreement

The Crazy Cancellation Fees

So, let’s say you’re working out like normal, and you get yelled at by the staff for “lunking”.

Suddenly, you don’t ever want to come back to this gym and you want to cancel.

While the gym is roughly $10/a month, not all gyms follow the exact same pricing schedule.

Planet Fitness Membership options from https://www.vekhayn.com and www.cheatsheet.com
Planet Fitness Membership options from https://www.vekhayn.com and www.cheatsheet.com

Most of the time, the gym price will be around $20. The elusive “black card” membership gets you access to any Planet Fitness in the world- so you can get lunked anywhere.

However, according to a Planet Fitness member, canceling before your commitment is over is a bad idea!

If you end the membership before the 12-month commitment is over, good luck, as you will have to pay a $60 fee.

So, my advice is don’t get stuck in that 12-month commitment. Just do a monthly membership, and if the planet fitness lunk alarm hits you, just cancel the membership and go to an actual gym.

I will give it to them, the gym is pretty cheap for what it is. Even if planet fitness does not have free weights that go above like 50 lbs.

Planet Fitness Rules

Planet fitness has really weird rules. And I mean…really weird. You can’t even wear jeans there.

I remember back in High School I would wear my khakis to the gym after wrestling practice.

The clothes had to be washed so ringworm wouldn’t spread, and driving home in the winter was really unsafe, so I got the gym done before even hitting the road.

I couldn’t imagine getting yelled at for working out in khakis. Is it great for the gym? No. But, the point is, I wanted to work my muscles and reap the great benefits of exercise.

Planet Fitness Membership Rules. [https://www.vekhayn.com]
Planet Fitness Membership Rules.

Honestly, if I heard the planet fitness lunk alarm screeching because I brought some jeans to the gym, I would probably never come back. How is this supposed to help new people be comfortable in the gym?

Now I get it, there is a “workout” attire, but people are new to the gym, and not everybody can afford workout clothes either.

This is all besides the point, let’s cover the full planet fitness rule book.

Planet Fitness Rule Book PDF

In this Planet Fitness Rule Book PDF, we find a fairly normal list of rules.

  • Don’t disrespect others.
  • Be safe.
  • Don’t do anything that can harm others.
  • Don’t steal.
  • Wear appropriate clothing.

So, how come there are tons of extra rules never listed in that pdf?

For example, the whole “lunking” thing, or even worse…the planet fitness dress code.

This is so strange, in their “official” list they don’t mention anything crazy. But, when you’re inside the gym, it’s a whole different story.

Planet Fitness Dress Code

The dreaded Planet Fitness Dress Code is one of the craziest things ever.

Remember high school? I sure do. Remember how everybody always complained about the dress code? Yeah, well Planet Fitness is 100x worse.

Planet Fitness Dress Code. [https://www.vekhayn.com]
Planet Fitness Dress Code.

Enter any Planet Fitness and you’ll find the dreaded dress code emblem on the walls.

Don’t follow it and the planet fitness lunk alarm will be going off like the USA is under attack by Russia.

Planet Fitness Dress Code Poster. Courtesy: www.hornet.com
Planet Fitness Dress Code Poster. Courtesy: www.hornet.com

The planet fitness dress code poster says:

“to maintain our gymtimidation environment, please no jeans, boots, sandals or string tanktops*”

Planet FITNESS DRESS CODE

These aren’t entirely crazy ideas, but…rules?

I mean let’s be honest here. If someone wants to work out in their jeans, why stop them? If they’re going hard and having a good time, what’s the problem?

The other problem is much of the dress code is up to staff interpretation.

This means if one of the staff members really just hates you based on your age, skin color, etc. they can just out you for wearing a pink tank top and call it “revealing”.

Man- this place really just sucks! And they set off the planet fitness lunk alarm for your walkout.

“Judgement Free Zone” – What a Joke.

The “judgement free zone” across planet fitness is a complete joke.

If you’re caught judging others in the gym, the planet fitness lunk alarm will go roaring. Just make sure you’re judging the people they want you to.

"Judgement free zone" in Planet Fitness. https://www.vekhayn.com
“Judgement free zone” in Planet Fitness. https://www.vekhayn.com

Yep, this is another crooked way of planet fitness controlling you and the people they hate.

They praise this “judgement free zone” but clearly judge bodybuilders and powerlifters in their commercials online.

Also, this is just another excuse for them to get rid of people they don’t like. If you’re black, they may kick you out for “judging another member” and you can’t say a thing about it.

I mean honestly, what’s the definition for “judging” someone? What happens if you zone-out in the wrong direction?

How Sensitive is The Lunk Alarm?

This is a common question asked by many.

However, the lunk alarm is actually controlled by the staff. There isn’t a microphone detecting certain decibels.

So that also means, depending on how “chill” the staff is, you can either be very loud or must be quiet as a mouse.

That also means all the videos where they try to get louder to set it off, are just waiting for some guy behind the desk to sound the alarm.

Why Planet Fitness is Bad

If you’re still asking why planet fitness is bad, let’s recap again.

Planet fitness is bad because they use their branded planet fitness lunk alarm to discriminate against others and create a toxic environment.

This alarm can be used by staff to discriminate against gender, skin color, or just get rid of people they don’t like. Imagine if someone was mad because you lift more than them?

Why Planet Fitness is Bad [https://www.vekhayn.com]
Why Planet Fitness is Bad

Planet Fitness tried to create a “judgement free zone” but set up this massive lunk alarm specifically to judge those.

Lifting weights or pushing yourself? Now a war siren is going off, they don’t want you to succeed.

Not to mention there are barely any free weights in the gym, poor machines, and the entire idea of the gym is backwards.

They give free pizza out on Mondays and bagels out on Tuesdays. I get a gym trying to support its’ members, but they couldn’t offer anything more healthy?

A Conclusion On The Ridiculous Planet Fitness Lunk Alarm

Well, the truth is out: The planet fitness lunk alarm does more harm than it does good.

It’s more or less a tool used to discriminate against others and remove power. And there’s not really and proof it actually helps people hide from “gymtimidation” and just promotes a “don’t push yourself” mindset.

So, really, skip this gym. There are tons of reputable gyms out there at low prices that don’t do sketchy and weird practices.

What do you think of the planet fitness lunk alarm? Leave a comment below. Have you been hit by it? And do you think it is beneficial or just bad?

About the author

Vigilant

Vigilant is an author extremely dedicated to his blog. From a hard life of growing up paycheck to paycheck, he somehow took advantage of the opportunity to make himself a stronger person and pushed through to keep on pursuing his career an Emergency Medicine doctor, is currently training to be a firefighter, wrestles, and lifts 2 hours a day all with a full-time job and in college. Learn more about Vigilant and the "mustang gang" here at the About Me section.

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