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Naked yoga man learns ‘judgment-free’ gym has its limits, New Hampshire police say

Eric M. Stagno was arrested at a New Hampshire Planet Fitness for indecent exposure, when he allegedly stripped naked and then started to do yoga. He allegedly said he did it because he thought the gym was “judgment-free.”
Eric M. Stagno was arrested at a New Hampshire Planet Fitness for indecent exposure, when he allegedly stripped naked and then started to do yoga. He allegedly said he did it because he thought the gym was “judgment-free.” Plaistow Police Department

Planet Fitness takes a lot of pride in its image as a gym for people who wouldn’t normally think to go to a gym. The walls are emblazoned with the phrases “no critics” and “judgment-free zone.”

But one man learned Sunday that “judgment-free” is not the same thing as “clothing optional,” New Hampshire police said.

Police say 34-year-old Eric Stagno walked into the gym before stripping nude and starting to exercise, shocking the other patrons.



“The story we got from witnesses was that the guy walked in, stripped down right there in front, left the clothes and belongings at the front desk, walked back and forth across the gym a couple of times and then settled in over at the yoga mats,” Plaistow, New Hampshire, Police Capt. Brett Morgan told the Union-Leader.

“When officers arrived, they found him there, completely nude: on his knees in a yoga-type position,” Morgan told the Boston Globe.

Gymgoers were disturbed and police were called, though they say the man largely kept to himself and did not appear to be trying to start a scene.

“He certainly wasn’t near the front window for everyone to see.,” Morgan told the Union-Leader.

Police arrested him without incident and charged him with indecent exposure and disorderly conduct, the paper reported. Police said the naked yoga man only made one statement: about how he thought the gym was a judgment-free zone, according to NECN.

That didn’t quite match what bystanders thought about the whole thing.

“Some of the comments some witnesses gave were that they felt uncomfortable, disgusted, sick, and unsafe,” Morgan told the Boston Globe. “There were more witnesses coming forward than we could take names.”

Gym members told WMUR they were upset by what they had seen.

“To me, it’s like, ‘What did you smoke before you came to the gym?’” one member told WMUR. “No, I don’t think you should be at the gym naked.”

Some social media users got a kick out of the story.

Stagno was released on $1,000 bond and will return to court in September, according to the station.

An Independence man captured video of a naked man on an ATV leading police on an hour-long chase Sunday on Interstate 435 in the Northland. Video courtesy of Jess Fishell.

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