Stay in shape with new things: speed & agility

Do something outside of your regular workout routine. It will improve your body-mind connection, coordination and you will also get an immediate sense of accomplishment! You burn more fat and calories too. Go for outdoor boot camp, trail run, mountain bike ride or try speed and agility training. New things will help you too boost your fitness and performance this summer!

Check out our new programs at Crowfoot YMCA

Learn to be fast, explosive, agile with fun & dynamic work outs. Improve balance and gain confidence through movements. Accessible exercise program: 6 classes out of 8 weeks so you will have time off for vacation

Speed & agility training for fitness and sports: Monday 7:00-8:00pm

Outdoor boot camps: Monday 5:15-6:15pm Tuesday and Thursday 10:00-11:00am




Free Grade 6 Memberships!

Can you believe it?

All Grade 6 Students in Calgary are now eligible for a free YMCA Membership during their grade 6 year (September-August).

We’ve partnered with the awesome Calgary Flames and Flames Foundation for Life to make grade 6 the best year ever and get Flames Friday’s going.

YMCA Calgary Flames Grade 6

YMCA CEO Helene Weir and Calgary Flames CEO Ken King with some excited Grade 5 students.

Starting in September 2014, students in grade 6 in Calgary can bring proof of their grade to any YMCA Calgary branch and sign up for a free membership.

We’ll have cool activities, opportunities to try unique sports, and chances to hang out with Calgary Flames players.

Parents – we’re doing this because we know how important your kids’ health is and we thought this would be a great way to help grade 6 youth get more active, make some new friends, have a positive place to hang out, and learn some leadership skills too.

For more information, click here.


One Year Later

Flood 2013 YMCA Helps Donations

As the one year anniversary of the 2013 Southern Alberta Flood comes up, we at YMCA Calgary cannot help but remember how it impacted us and our community.

Eau Claire YMCA was evacuated and closed from June 20-June 27. Amazingly, there was no damage to our building.

As a gesture of goodwill and support, Westside Recreation Centre welcomed our Eau Claire members to use their facility free of charge and we welcomed members of the Talisman Centre and the Glencoe Club into our facilities.

Shawnessy YMCA was closed June 22-June 24 and used as a City of Calgary Evacuation Site for 300 long-term care seniors who had been displaced by the floods.

Premier Alison Redford and Minister of Health Fred Horn toured the Shawnessy YMCA and South Fish Creek Recreation Centre Evacuation site and with YMCA CalgaryAlison-Helene CEO Helene Weir and COO Kelly Smith, visited with seniors and nurses and thanked people for their patience and incredible demonstrations of resiliency during such a time of crisis.

Sadly, programming and a number of special events were cancelled, including our Annual Aboriginal Youth Hoops Basketball tournament, the Aboriginal Awareness Week Family Day Event, YMAP Grad, Saddletowne YMCA’s Preschool Party, and even the golf portion of our Annual YMCA Strong Kids Golf Tournament fundraiser.

The disruption to events and programs was unfortunate. The disruption to the lives of so many members of our community was immense and we are so proud to have been witness to the incredible volunteerism, community support, and care demonstrated by so many Calgarians.

Banjo-playerYMCA Helps

We teamed with local agencies to accept relief donations for First Nations communities who were affected by the flooding, and were overwhelmed with the tremendous support from our city.

Thank you

Thank you again, Calgary, for being such amazing neighbours. We are so glad to be a part of a community that demonstrates amazing community engagement.


Space Still Available at Camp Chief Hector Overnight Camps

As of June 24, the following camps still  have room:


10Y Mistaya 13-day Traditional | Jul 20 – Aug 1

12Y Kananaskin 13-day Traditional | Aug 17 – 29

13Y Kananaskin 13-day Horse | Aug 3 – 15 & Aug 17-29

14Y Pioneer 13-day Hike | Jul 6 – 18 & Aug 17 – 29

15Y Pioneer 13-day Hike | Aug 17 – 29

15Y Pioneer 13-day Canoe | Aug 3 – 15

14-15Y Pioneer 13-day Hike/Horse Gray Jay | Aug 17-29

16Y Leadership 1 Canoe | 27-days | Jul 6-Aug 1


10-11Y Mistaya 6-day Overnight Hike | Jul 6 – 11 & Jul 13 – 18 & Jul 20 – 25

12-13Y Jr Shotungwa | Jul 13 – 18

13Y Kananaskin 13-day Canoe | Aug 3 – 15

14Y Pioneer 13-day Hike | Jul 6 – 18 & Jul 20 – Aug 1

15Y Pioneer 13-day Canoe | Aug 3 – 15

15Y Pioneer Gray Jay 13-day Hike | Jul 6 – 18 & Aug 3 – 15

16Y Leadership 1 Canoe | 27-days | Jul 6 – Aug 1

16Y Leadership 1 Gray Jay Hike/Horse | 27-days | Aug 3 – 29


CONTACT US: 403-269-6156 or toll free 1-866-430-9622 As with all YMCA Calgary programs, financial assistance is available to those who qualify.


Gray Jay Clean Up

On Friday, June 13 a group of YMCA Calgary staff headed out to clean up the Gray Jay camp site and remove debris and trash that had accumulated over the winter months.

The weather wasn’t great – it was raining, it was 4 degrees Celsius. But Cris brought a great lunch and we worked hard and it was so worth it.  It’s a great place for youth to really see the wilderness.

Cleaning up camp


Gray Jay is an outtrip site of Camp Chief Hector YMCA. Groups of youth go out to the wilderness at Gray Jay to hike, trail ride, and gain inspirational leadership experience.

A Picture Says a Thousand Words

A lovely picture handed in this morning at Eau Claire YMCA by two of our younger members, able to access the YMCA through our Strong Kids Campaign.

Strong Kids Thank You Letter and Drawing

Thank you to everyone who supports Strong Kids for helping to impact the lives of these two wonderful boys.

Crowfoot Summer Day Camps

gym kids

Crowfoot YMCA Summer Day Camps

Voted by 2013 Calgary’s Child Magazine Parents’ Choice awards for Best Children’s Day Camp, YMCA Crowfoot Summer Camps are back to for another exciting summer! We have limited spots so register early so your camper can experience the highlight of their summer!

What better way to spend the summer than with friends- old and new, kicking a soccer ball or figuring out whose cannonball made the biggest splash in the pool? Crowfoot YMCA Summer Daycamps offers each child the opportunity to grow, thrive, lead and belong in a safe, fun and exciting environment.

Whether they are making geckos out of beads & string, a new superhero mask, or visiting great places in and around Calgary such as Rotary Park, Butterfield Acres, TELUS Spark, each day in our Daycamps guarantees not be the same as the last.

Register today to reserve your child a place and get them ready for an action packed summer. Call 403-547-6576!

Find out more about Crowfoot YMCA here.


10 Tips for Biking Safely

Men with bikes

10 Tips for Biking Safely

Biking is a fun and healthy family activity, and a great way to get from A to B. But don’t forget about some basic safety tips.

1 – Wear a well-fitting helmet. Everyone should wear a helmet, even adults and toddlers in bike trailers. The helmet should be snug and cover the forehead, two fingers should fit between the chin strap and chin. By law, all cyclists under 18 need to wear a helmet. Four provinces in Canada have laws that all cyclists must wear a helmet.

2 – Know your hand signals. Let the cars and people around you know what you’re going to do. You can find hand signals here.

3 – Have a bell and use it. Again, let cyclists and pedestrians around you know what you’re going to do, especially when you are coming up behind them to pass.

4 – Know what’s around you. Be aware of possible hazards around you, including other vehicles, road or path conditions, pedestrians, pets, and even parked cars.

5 – Be cautious coming down hills or going around blind corners. Remember that the uphill cyclist has the right of way.

6 – Walk your bike on crosswalks. Crosswalks are for pedestrians, so become a pedestrian by walking your bike. If you would like to ride through the intersection, remember to remain a vehicle and cross the intersection on the roadway rather than in the crosswalk.

7 – Only ride on bike paths or the street and give way to pedestrians. When you are riding your bike you are a vehicle (ie. car). Sidewalks, like crosswalks, are for pedestrians.

8 – Obey the rules of the road. Again, when you are riding your bike, you are a vehicle. Stop at stop signs and red lights, stay in your lane, pass on the left, ride single file, go with, not against, the flow of traffic and give pedestrians the right of way.

9 – Wear bright colours so you can be seen. Cars, other cyclists, and pedestrians can’t see you if it’s getting dark and you’re wearing all black.

10 – Have a reflector or light if you plan on biking during dusk or dark. You’re a lot smaller than a car and drivers have a lot less visibility. Be seen.

CAA has a great Bike Safety website with tips for cyclists and drivers to share the road, a quiz and even a cyclist road test. If you ride on the road a lot, check it out.

Read our blog post about 6 Great Things About Biking here.

6 Water Safety Tips for Summer

Swimming at Saddletowne YMCA
Summer weather has begun to arrive in Calgary and many families are heading out to the lake to enjoy sunshine, sand, and water activities. Before you grab your boogie boards, beach balls, and brightly coloured towels remind yourself of some water safety tips.

1 – Make sure everyone knows how to float and swim. Teaching kids some basic swimming skills and how to properly float can save lives. The YMCA offers swim lessons for people all ages.

2 – Wear a lifejacket. Even if you know how to swim. Even if you’re not in a boat. Even if the water doesn’t seem all that deep. Red Cross Alberta suggests that wearing a lifejacket could eliminate up to 90% of all boating-related drownings.

3 – Always supervise and never go alone. Practice the buddy system when going on or in open water and always supervise children when around water, even if it’s just a kiddie pool or bathtub.

4 – Recognize the current. It’s easy for someone to get swept away in a current or surprised by sudden drop-off. Be cautious when swimming in open water.

5 – Respect wildlife. Nature and bodies of water are home to a lot of wildlife. For your safety and theirs, respect their space and keep your distance from them.

6 – Protect your skin. Playing out in the water and sunshine is a lot of fun, but it also exposes your skin to rays and reflections. Slather on a high SPF and reapply every few hours.

As always, keep hydrated by drinking lots of water.

It’s YYC Bike Month!

Family Biking


The City of Calgary has declared June to be Bike Month. There are events throughout June all over the city.

Check out the City of Calgary’s website for events and a fun checklist of things to with your bike.

There’s even an iphone with maps of the City of Calgary’s Pathways & Bikeways! (I’ve downloaded it and it’s great!)


6 Great Things About Biking

1 — You can cycle alone or with a group. My husband and I love biking together on the paths along the Bow River, the trails in Fish Creek Park, or on trails in Canmore and Banff.

2 – It’s free! Yes, you need a bike – but the one-time cost opens up an infinite number of days of free activities.

3 – Anyone can go on a bike ride! Babies can ride in seats or trailers, toddlers can ride tricycles or bicycles with training wheels, and kids and youth can get their very own bikes in whatever colour they choose. I grew up going on family bike rides along the trails in Red Deer – a caravan of six bicycles in a row, Dad leading and Mom being a watchful rearguard.

4 – Biking is easy on the joints. My brother has had multiple knee surgeries and running is just too painful now, but biking he can do with ease.

5 – You get to be outside and see the scenery. One of the best parts of biking is discovering new paths, new neighbourhoods, and new areas of nature. You can enjoy warm weather and cooler weather alike, all you need is a light jacket and the exercise of pedaling to keep you warm.

6 – You can go fast or slow. Some folks enjoy the speed and the breeze, others prefer meandering along quiet paths or streets. I love seeing how fast I can get going, then tackling a big hill, and then I cool down with a slow meandering pedal through a neighbourhood and enjoy the scenery of nature and the always interesting diversity among the facades of older homes.


Before you head out on your family bike ride, check out our 10 Tips for Biking Safely blog post.