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I have spinal stenosis and swimming is one of the best forms of treatment. I had been exercising at other gyms, but none of the workouts seemed to be helping me. I decided to join the Rye Y and try their water exercise programs, and I am so glad I did. I only wish I had joined here sooner! The water exercise class is like medicine to me and has helped my spinal stenosis more than I ever thought possible.
I recently went over to the Y’s new location, The Studios at The Rye Y, to try a gentle yoga class. While it was a new surrounding for me, I was welcomed with open arms and happy smiling faces. Barbara, the instructor, worked with me to find positions that would work best for my spine. I can’t wait to go back and try more classes at The Studios.
I love the Rye Y. I have met the nicest people and have made many new friends. All the staff here are welcoming, happy, and always have a smile on their faces. I love stepping into Barbara’s office to connect with new people I wouldn’t normally connect with. I am always promoting the Y and getting people to join. I also love to volunteer at the Y’s many community events.
I was very sick for over a year and I thought, they thought, I might die. When I finally started healing and was looking for a job, the Y reached out to me from Indeed.com. At first I wasn’t sure, I’d never been in reception. I’d worked at Starbucks and worked at a movie theatre. I wasn’t sure about the Y environment, especially because I’d learned that I had a couple of physical disabilities.
I’ve always lived in Westchester, in Harrison and Mamaroneck, but had never visited the Rye Y. When I came here for the first time for my interview, everyone was so welcoming and warm. I continue to see and feel that. I was worried about working in a gym because I had issues with my weight from being ill. Here it has never been an issue. I see members from all walks of life and that is beautiful.
Being here has really been a source of empowerment after being sick for so long. I’ve made bonds with my coworkers and with members. I’ve connected with members from all walks of life who have also experienced illness and recovery. Having that support is so beautiful. It is the most wonderful job I’ve ever had.
When I take classes at the Y Studios, everyone is different; everyone has their own momentum. I took a Zumba class with my mom because she is obsessed with Zumba. It gives you that confidence that I would never have at another gym. It really feels like a second home. You can be comfortable with yourself. It is so great.
People don’t realize how high the Y really holds those values. You really feel it. You know each other’s names. You start off as strangers and soon know each other’s stories. Even just their day-to-day lives – you know when they haven’t been here for a few days and you ask them how they’ve been. I think that’s really wonderful.
We moved to Harrison this year from Brazil – my husband, me and two boys. He’s working in the city every day and needed somewhere to exercise very early in the morning and I needed somewhere to go after I dropped the kids off at school. I didn’t know anyone here. So I looked on Google maps and I found this Y! I knew my cousin in Atlanta used to go the Y there so I said, “OK, let’s look at this one.”
We love it here! It is also perfect for the kids as we were looking for swim lessons and other classes for them. Coming here is the best moment in our day. We come here every morning. My husband comes at 5:45am and I come at 9. The teachers are very good and very inclusive. Tatum takes classes with me and is also a coach for my kids. It is a friendly environment and I have felt very comfortable since the beginning. Yvette and Diana both contribute to the warm and friendly atmosphere. I love it here. I was away during the summer and I missed it. The Y is making all the difference for our physical health and emotional health.
It is perfect for our family. In the afternoon I go with my kids to their classes. This afternoon my son has tennis. He loves it. Tatum is the best. My other son has swimming twice a week. So I’m here every afternoon and every morning!
I see everyone from their schools, so we have made friends here.
The Y is the perfect place on earth. I feel so lucky to have found it. To think I didn’t know anyone and no one told me to come, but I found the perfect place. When I see someone new I say, join me! It’s super fun. Everyone is super friendly. Coming here makes my day.
Finding a New Life at the Y
I had a bad construction accident. Two stories and a ladder collapsed. I cracked my head open, had neck, back and nerve damage down both legs. It was horrible. I lost everything. It ruined my life. My livelihood was totally gone in a few seconds. You don’t realize it could be you.
At first, I refused to get rods in my back, refused to get neck surgery. I held out for 3, 4 years. I was getting steroid injections every six weeks, then off 3 months, alternating neck and back. I had a false sense of feeling better but the side effects were bad. I gained 40, 50 pounds. It affected my personality.
One day my doctor suggested I look into swimming. I was always a good swimmer as a kid. He said “There’s a YMCA in Rye, why don’t you check it out?” After months and months of him telling me to do that, I finally pulled into the Y. I walked in and behind the counter in a little office was Barbara Hughes. I told her I was considering joining for physical reasons. I’m thinking we are going to have a 2-minute conversation. She asked everything about me and I told her. She said “Jack, this is where you need to be. I don’t care if it’s 5 minutes a day. Just get here.” I said “What?” I was taken aback. I didn’t even know her. I was just inquiring about what the Y has to offer, how much it charges.
This was 8 years ago and I was in a very dark place. I had lost everything. So I joined. I came one day. I was very, very uncomfortable. I didn’t look good. I was always into sports so I was never insecure but now, after the hell I’d gone through in the last couple years, I felt embarrassed. I would last 5 minutes in the water, feel uncomfortable and get out, get dressed and go to the car. Sometimes I would drive to the parking lot, put my car in park and next thing you know, put it in reverse and just leave.
After 3 weeks, I decided I wasn’t coming back. I tried it, it wasn’t for me. A lot of people join gyms, you go in and scan and nobody knows you’re there. All of a sudden my phone rings. And it’s Barbara. She says, “Jack, How are you doing? I notice you haven’t been here.” How does this woman who has hundreds of members know that I didn’t make it in? Meanwhile, her office is back there behind the check-in desk; she couldn’t see everybody. She must be going through the computer. She says “Jack you’ve got to come.” I had every excuse in the book and threw every excuse at her. “You’ve just got to get here, I don’t care if it’s just 5 minutes.” She just kept repeating, “this is where you need to be, this is where you belong, this is a family.”
So next thing you know I started coming more and more. There were still those days that I’d last 5 minutes in the pool and get out, and days where I’d pull into the parking lot and pull out before I got out of the car. Then I’d stop for 2 or 3 weeks and sure enough, my phone would ring and there is Barbara saying “Jack, where have you been, you’ve got to get in here my dear. This is where you belong.” And I’m wondering how does this woman even care?
I was just trying to hide and didn’t want to be in sight anywhere. I was very uncomfortable in my own skin. I was like a church mouse, couldn’t talk – now people wish I could shut up! The Y literally saved my life. I started coming 15 minutes, 30 minutes. After 4 or 5 months, I met Anna, the lifeguard. I started telling her what Barbara said. She said “She’s right. You’ve just got to get here.” And I said “You too? What is it, everyone who works here is giving the same speech!” So now Anna would notice when I wasn’t around, ask if I was OK.
Next thing you know, between both of them, they wouldn’t let me stop, even if I wanted to. Barbara must have called me 100 times that first year. I gave in. I just started showing up. I started feeling better and losing the weight. I started eating better. I started coming more and more. And it worked. Anna and I had a great friendship. Then a year later, I get my back surgery so I’m laid up. Like clockwork, Barbara calls. I said I’m rehabbing. I’ll be in in 3 or 4 weeks. Sure enough, I don’t even make it to 4 weeks and that phone rings. She got me back here. Then I had the neck surgery and had to start over again. I had an ear surgery and found out I couldn’t go swimming for 14 months. I didn’t know what to do.
Barbara tells me they have a Fitness Center upstairs. I’ve been coming almost 3 years now and I didn’t know anything about upstairs. I started going up there and doing the bicycle thing and a little weight training. That was a rough year but I was able to work through it. Then I got back into the pool and I realized I kind of liked it upstairs because when you’re in the pool for 3 years, you’re not talking to anyone, just looking at that black line every 3 seconds. I started going upstairs and became friendly with staff and members. Things were going great.
Then I came down with thyroid cancer. And that knocked me off my feet. I thought I was done with the YMCA. Until my phone rings and there is Barbara asking “Where are you, I know you’ve been sick, but this is where you belong.” So I came back.
I met Diana in the Fitness Center and Laura, then some of the trainers. They really listen and go out of their way to help. It really is family. I started volunteering. I met Kathy in Child Care and I volunteered at Halloween and Christmas for the kid parties. I started giving back and feeling the family thing. And the trainers upstairs – Coach George and Jason – they’re training people but they see you doing something wrong, they’ll say – listen keep your back straight – they are not even training you, but they go out of their way to help. The doors are always open here. It really is a community. It took me years and years to realize that. I wouldn’t be here right now without the Y. This place saved my life
Saturday, September 17
7:15am-noon @ the Y Studios
A great way to experience the Y Studios is to join in our GROUP FITNESS FALL FEST this Saturday! Giveaways, Healthy Snacks and Fun!
Advance reservations are required for all at ryeymca.org. Click here for details
Friday, June 3, 8:00pm – 11:00pm
21 Locust Avenue, Rye, NY
Join us for an evening of dessert, drinks and live music under the stars.
Featuring music by The Ray Greiche Band!
Click here for details and to purchase tickets.
Friday, October 22
Friday, October 15
Thursday, October 7
Friday, October 1
Dear Rye Y members,
Thank you for your patience and understanding during the past month. We are excited to announce that our facility we will partially reopen starting this Monday.
On Monday, October 4:
The Fitness Center will reopen at 5:30am. The 2nd floor youth locker rooms will be available for changing only. We currently have no hot water.
All registered programs that are held in the gymnasium will restart at the Y. This includes youth sports, gymnastics, gymnastics team and pre-team, dance, tot gym and baby & me classes. Rock Your World with Armelle will also start in the Y ‘s Group Ex studio.
The Pre-School Enrichment program will start on Tuesday in the 3rd floor Member Lounge.
Our After School program will continue at the Osborn School.
On Monday, October 11:
Group Exercise classes at the Rye Y will restart. (Exact schedule TBA)
Our open gym schedule will start soon – date TBA.
Please note that the elevator is not yet working.
Facility Hours as of Monday, October 4
Face masks are required for everyone, ages 2 and up
Next Steps and other info:
We are making progress on restoring both the Pa Cope and Brookside Pool. We hope to reopen the pools around October 18.
Our members have praised the Carver Center pool for its cleanliness and large windows – as well as the opportunity to see familiar staff and swimmers. See below for details.
|Thursday, September 23
Dear Rye Y members,
Our electricity was finally restored on Tuesday and we are working on the necessary steps needed for reopening the 2nd and 3rd floor of the facility. This mainly includes repairs to our fire alarm system and running various checks on all of our HVAC systems and creating a safe entry point near our front doors as we prepare the first floor for significant renovations. We will provide an update on these items hopefully by the middle of next week!
Next Steps and other info:
If you would like to put your membership on hold, please contact John Grieco, Membership Operations Director, at email@example.com.For those that have reached out about making a donation to support the Y’s mission or rebuilding efforts, click here.
Tuesday, September 18
The New Rochelle Y is temporarily closed. We’ll keep you updated. Lap swim is now available at the Carver Center in Port Chester, which has graciously welcomed our members to their pool during specified hours. Reservations may be made starting today for Wednesday slots through our reservation system. Before making reservations, please carefully read all the guidelines. We are guests of the Carver Center and must comply with all of their rules.
Friday, September 17
Dear Rye Y members,
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we continue the clean up process and start to formulate plans to rebuild the first floor.
If you would like to put your membership on hold, please contact John Grieco, Membership Operations Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For those that have reached out about making a donation to support the Y’s mission or rebuilding efforts, click here.
Thanks again, and we look forward to seeing you back at the Rye Y soon! To view future flood recovery updates, click here. Click here to view a short video from Board Member Rachel Breinin.
September 8, 2021
Other Important Updates:
If you would like to put your membership on hold, please contact John Grieco, Membership Operations Director, at email@example.com.Thank you for your patience and understanding as we weather yet another difficult time together.
Click here or below to see a slideshow of our restoration progress.
Active, flexible and safe options for youth.
Elementary Sports Pods
Middle School Private and Semi-private lessons
Grades 9-12: Basketball Coaching
Grades 9-12: Soccer Coaching
Grades 9-12: LaCrosse Coaching
Click here to register for private or semi-private lessons.
For more information about small groups or sports pods, contact Tatum Nussbaum at 967-6363, ext. 117 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Private, Semi-Private and Small “Pod” Group Lessons for Rye YMCA members
Click here for details
Please contact email@example.com for more information.
We recognize that there has been an increase of demand and some frustration around our current registration process. Over the past few weeks, we have heard more and more that people are getting shut out of classes very early in the morning due to the early calls to make reservations. We appreciate your willingness to cooperate with us and we apologize for the inconvenience. We recognize that the classes are popular and think moving to a pre-registration that follows our current sessions might be a good solution.
How this will work:
Anybody interested in water exercise will sign up for classes that correspond with our formal program session. We will start this beginning November 30-January 8, (holiday class times will vary). The week before each new session starts, we will email a registration form and have copies at the front desk. You will list your class choices in order of preference, along with listing how many classes you would like. Registrations will be processed as a lottery with a goal to have participants get into at least 2 to 3 of their preferred classes. You may not get your top choices, and you may not get 4 reservations per week. Please do not list choices that don’t work with your typical schedule. If you get a choice and it no longer works for you, there is no guarantee that there will be an available slot in another class. If a member does not attend their class without notifying us via email in advance, they may be subject to losing that class placement. The attached registration form is what you will need to fill out (you can reference it below as well). Please bring this to the Y, no later than Thursday, November 19. We will send you your placement for classes by end of day on Monday, November 23. The current reservation system will stay in place by making reservations the day before class through November 28.
We recognize this system might be a bit more formal than calling the day before, but we hope this will alleviate some of the frustration around the daily reservations. Confirmation of your class registration will be emailed to you before the start of the session. If you do not hear back about your placement by end of day Monday, November 23, please email me and I will tell you your class placement. If you do not show up for your class without indicating to us more than one time, you run this risk of being canceled out of the class. The demand for classes is significant and we need everybody’s cooperation to ensure that we are utilizing our space efficiently.
Also, a kind reminder of our member responsibilities:
Changing areas are meant to be used for a short amount of time. At this time, we are not prepared to open the showers and ask that you kindly change into dry clothes and leave the changing area to make it available for another person. Please do not use the time to rinse swimsuit, put make up on, dry hair, etc.
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