FREE Demo Classes at the Saddletowne YMCA

Get Your Move On! Here are a dozen & 1 ways to do it! Attend a free demo class and enter to win a FREE registered class! One ballot provided for each demo class attended. Must attend the full class. Draw will occur on December 24, 2014 at 12:00pm. Winner will be contacted by phone or email.


Saturday, December 13

Pilates Level 1 – 8:00-9:00am – Studio B – Jacqui

Self Defense – 9:30-10:30am – MP1 – Geri

Sunday, December 14

Fitness Kickboxing – 6:30-7:30pm – Studio B – Diane

Monday, December 15

Belly Dance – 6:30-7:30pm – Studio B – Serena

AquaBootcamp – 7:00-7:45pm – Pool – Kristin

Tuesday, December 16

Active Yoga – 5:15-6:15pm – Studio B – Agatha

TRX – 6:30-7:30pm – Studio B – Agatha

Wednesday, December 17

Bellyfit® – 5:30-6:30pm – Studio B – Serena

Active Yoga – 6:00-7:00pm – Studio A – Agatha

Metabolic Conditioning – 7:15-8pm – Studio A – Agatha

Thursday, December 18

Hard Core – 6:00-7:00pm – Studio B – Agatha

Kettlebell Bootcamp – 6:30-7:30pm – MP1 – Jacqui

Monday, December 22

Women’s Resistance – 9:30-10:30am – Studio B – Kaia

Bellyfit SAGE™ – 10:30-11:30am – Studio A – Serena

Thank you, Nurses!

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We’ve wrapped up another fantastic semester working with the U of C nurses here in the North LINC program! The LINC students wrote letters to the nurses in beautiful handmade cards to say goodbye. These thoughtful notes really illustrate the impact of the partnership, and highlight the importance of building relationships between the newcomers and health care professionals in our community. Check out what they had to say!

Every week, I learnt something special. In the first week, I learnt physical exercises to make our heart stronger. In the second week, I learnt to eat less sugar, salt and fat, and also choose healthier fats. In the third week, I learnt to look for fresh products at the grocery store. -Najeeba, Pakistan

Now I know how to read the labels that I can understand what I’m buying. Your presentation also help me improve my English. I also want to thank YMCA for inviting the nurses for the health guide, and making it possible to learn how to be healthy.   -Tram, Vietnam

I’m glad I got the chance to meet you. I like to thank you for your positive attitude and vibrant energy. I’ll always remember your nice smiles. -Sarita, India

I learn from your class many different things that I didn’t know before. How much percent of sugar, fat, sodium, are dangerous, and I know how many percent are useful. I now know how to know your heart rate without medical things. -Esrael, Eritria

I like the time spent with you in the gym. I appreciate you give us knowledge about healthy living and importance of gym. I hope you will become successful women in future. – Mehwish, Pakistan

All of you tried your best to guide every single person about their heart beat, sugar level, and blood pressure. We appreciate your positive attitude, to help us get to know about things in the facility. – Rehama, Pakistan

I begin to drink more water and I use iron, and vegetables. When I go to the grocery store, I begin to look for fresh products. – Faride, Iran

I’m glad to meet such patient and professional people like you, with whom I enjoyed speaking during gym exercises, and your letting me know how my English speaking improved. –Soufia, Morocco

I learned more English. I enjoyed so much with you nurses. I learn about less salt. Now I begin to drink 1% milk. I eat whole wheat bread. – Mandeep, India

I appreciate you coming to my class. It is rare to find such kind friends. With your help I learned about exercises, activity, heart beat, sodium, high blood pressure, cholesterol, fat, and also healthy food. I didn’t know anything about these before and I never read the labels. I’m grateful for you coming to our class. We hope you enjoyed having us as much as we enjoyed being with you. –Ravinder, India

Thank you, Nurses! We hope to see you again soon!


YMCA Shawnessy Profile: Bruce Moncrieff Mortimer

Bruce Moncrieff Mortimer photo

Name: Bruce Moncrieff Mortimer

Position: Front desk volunteer and member, Shawnessy YMCA

Years at YMCA: 4 years with the YMCA, 2 years as a member in Shawnessy.

What made you choose the YMCA?

What made me come to the Y, other than I have a very good feeling for it, was that I didn’t have to sign a contract. The YMCA represents good values historically, and I’ve always thought well of it. I like the facility and I like the way the YMCA is run. It’s very clean and friendly.

How has the YMCA positively impacted your life?

I get a good workout in a good facility, there are a lot of nice people and I enjoy it.

What has your best experience here been?

I don’t have a unique experience. I do enjoy volunteering at the front desk. It’s fun to get to know the members’ names and eventually be able to call them by their names. I work out and volunteer during the same times, so the people coming through the gate in the morning are also the people I work out with, and they always wonder how I know their names. Well, I’m the guy at the front desk looking at all the card information that is displayed. That’s fun. I enjoy the people contact.

What is your favourite thing about working at the YMCA?

I don’t have one favourite thing, but I find it a very well-run and friendly place. It’s just a great place to go. I don’t feel like it’s a corporate place where they’re trying to make money. In fact, one of the things that I didn’t know and I’ve been very impressed with is how much financial assistance they give to people in the community. The Y offers some of its members discounted rates to help them participate in the YMCA programs and use the facilities. I didn’t realize that a lot of the money that comes into the Y is being used that way.

What would you say to someone thinking about joining the Shawnessy YMCA?

Go for it! It’s a great facility, it’s clean, it’s neat, it’s well-run, it’s affordable, it’s competitive and you don’t need to sign a contract. I have no complaints and expect to be there for as long as I can go.

Healthy Breakfast Recipe

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Veggie Omelette

This recipe is one of my favourites. It can be adapted to use whatever you have in your fridge.

Chop one handful each of the following items:  peppers (any colour), zucchini, mushrooms, onions. Omit or add any veggies you like.

Saute the above in 1 to 1.5 teaspoons canola oil in a large wok or frying pan. Once they start to soften, add enough fresh baby spinach to fill the pan. Cook until the spinach wilts.

Beat one egg and ½ cup egg whites and then add veggies and mix.

Pour into non-stick omelet pan and add a few tablespoons grated cheese (mozzarella, cheddar or crumbled feta).

Cook until it starts to set (about 2-3 minutes) and then carefully flip and cook the other side.

Divide into 4 and serve with salsa and whole-grain toast. Delicious, filling and healthy!

Written by Janette Couch, Fitness Director at Crowfoot YMCA

Adopt a Family 2014 in Full Swing

It’s that time of year! Tis the season to celebrate the joy of giving from the heart. Bring warm holiday cheer to children and families through the Adopt a Family program.

Each winter YMCA Calgary runs an Adopt a Family program for families in our community who need a little extra help during the holidays. It is an opportunity for our staff, members, and participants to provide meaningful gifts to families in need.

Help provide much needed items to children and their families by picking up a gift or two.


How does Adopt a Family work?

The Adopt a Family displays in each YMCA Calgary location have gift tags that list the age, gender, family, and a suggested gift item.

All you need to do is:

  1. Take a tag (or two!) that describe the gift items you’d like to purchase
  2. Go shopping
  3. Bring the unwrapped gift and tag back to your YMCA location by noon on December 15
  4. YMCA staff will then wrap and deliver the presents just before Christmas

It’s that easy!


These donations bring smiles to the faces of parents and children, providing happy holiday memories. Thank you to everyone who has already donated!

Thank you for your generosity!

For more information or to donate, contact your YMCA Branch today.

*Please note: All 2014 Adopt a Family families have been selected.


Camp Chief Hector – 2015 Flood Respite Weekends Announced!

Camp Chief Hector has announced their new 2015 Flood Respite Weekends! If you were affected by the 2013 flood, don’t miss out on this great opportunity.

Flood Respite  poster  Winter-Spring 2015

We’re welcoming all families affected to spend a weekend at Camp Chief Hector YMCA. These weekends are a gift and are provided at no cost to flood-affected families. Funding is generously provided by the Government of Alberta and are designated to encourage building strong relationships within your community.

For more information about the schedule and what to expect, click here.

Call 403-269-6156 to register.

Photo Album: 50 Reasons to Get Active

Earlier this year we started a fun campaign on Twitter. Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday we posted an image with a reason to get active.

Our goal was to inspire you, our community, to get active and participate in positive, energetic activities in your daily life.

It’s been a fun journey to discover what resonates with our Twitter followers and why people and families choose to exercise, play games, and do activities together.

Check out all of our 50 Reasons to Get Active images on our Facebook page.

50 Reasons 1

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter to join in on other fun initiatives like 50 Reasons and get timely updates on what is happening at your Y.

Don’t forget to comment on Facebook on your favourite reason to get active!

And now, head out and #getactive!


50 Reasons 2

LINC Celebrates Peace

SAM_4318This November, in honor of YMCA Peace Week, LINC students chose the theme of Peace for their multi-cultural events. Peace Week is an opportunity to explore and celebrate peace in our communities, both on a local and a global scale. With students from nearly 40 different countries, the LINC program offered unique and creative perspectives on the meaning of peace and the power of the individual to create positive change for tomorrow.

At North LINC, students shared their messages artistically by creating a handmade feathery dove and a beautiful up-cycled quilt. A map illustrated all of the places our participants had called home before coming to Canada, and was an excellent visual reminder of all of the diverse perspectives we are lucky to have in our program. One class collected food donations for the Calgary Food Bank, and another displayed the giant green  Three Things for Calgary, and passed along Mayor Nenshi’s challenge.

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Origami Doves

At South LINC, students participated in series of Peace Workshops together. Groups created origami doves, practiced deep breathing for relaxation, wrote messages of peace to share, and participated in teambuilding activities to promote peaceful teamwork. At the end of the day, a peaceful flash mob set to John Lennon’s “Imagine” took over the lobby of the Shawnessy YMCA, and students passed messages of peace in a giant circle.

Both North and South LINC students embraced the theme of these events, and really put their hearts into exploring ways to bring peace to our community. The thoughtful presentations and beautiful artwork showed the caring and dedication of the students and teachers during this peaceful celebration. Great job, everyone!

To learn more about YMCA Calgary’s involvement in Peace Week, and find out how you can get involved, check out our website.


Christmas Tree Sales

From November 27 until December 24, Crowfoot YMCA will be selling Christmas Trees!

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Funds raised will support two of our important initiatives: YMCA Strong Kids Campaign and Leaders in Training Leadership Retreat.

The YMCA Strong Kids Campaign provides much-needed resources to support YMCA programs that give kids the opportunities to reach their full potential.

YMCA Strong Kids includes: helping a struggling family enjoy fun-filled activities regardless of their background or financial situation; helping a child learn to swim; helping a teen learn to lead, enabling a child/teen to participate in a recreation or physical activity.

The Leadership Retreat gives our young leaders and leaders-in-training a weekend in the mountains with other YMCA groups from across the prairies. This conference emphasizes community and stewardship and is the ultimate reward for their dedication to the leadership program.

Come buy your tree at Crowfoot YMCA, 8100 John Laurie Blvd. NW between 9am and 8pm Monday to Friday and between 10am and 6pm Saturday and Sunday.

Elves at Play

Are you feeling the crunch as the Holiday Season approaches?

Take some time to relax this December and let YMCA instructors care for your children while you do some stress-free festive shopping or have a little quiet time to yourself.

This exciting event called Elves at Play is being hosted by the Saddletowne, Crowfoot, Shawnessy and Eau Claire YMCAs on Saturday, December 13 from 1:00 – 5:00 p.m.

Children taking part in Elves at Play will be entertained with crafts, games, swimming and more, all within your local YMCA.  All activities will be appropriate for children aged 3-12.

Registration for this fun filled event is only $25 for members and $35 for non-members.  Please contact your local branch to register today.  We’ll see you then!

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