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I was 6 months old when I started coming here. I started with Armelle and Tatum’s class. I started doing the baby classes and now I’m on team. I did basketball at one point, but now I do gymnastics, yoga and Ninja Zone. I made a lot of friends being on team. Some people I knew, but some I became friends with.
Something I’ll always remember is getting on to pre team. I was really excited. Dominique, a coach here, told me I should try out one day at Summer Camp, so I did. Gymnastics camp was really fun. It was like classes but more, we would do contests and games, and stuff.
I enjoy gymnastics and coming to practice. I have learned a lot from being on team and from the coaches.
I came to the Rye Y in 2000 for an interview with Robert because they needed a housekeeper. And I got the job. I work in the locker room with the members and do the housekeeping job. I like everybody here. Everybody’s nice.
I have made friends in the locker room. I have gotten to know Chickie and some other members and I enjoy seeing these people when I come to work.
I like to work here because of my free membership. I’ve lost a lot of weight. When I started here I had 20 more pounds. I lost 20 pounds by myself! I like the elliptical and the Arc Trainer and the little weights – not a lot of weight. The staff in the Fitness Center taught me. I’ve thought about a class – I want to try Zumba!
I’m originally from The Netherlands and ended up in the US because my husband, John, is American. We met in 1998 on the street in Huntington Beach, California, on a quiet Wednesday morning. I was traveling around the world; he was there for business and visiting his brother. At a certain moment John and his brother were walking right next to me and started a spontaneous conversation. The conversation led to a coffee at Starbucks and after talking for about half an hour about travel and life in general, John said he was thinking of going to Mexico for a couple of days and asked if I would like to join him. I had been in California for three weeks and was ready to move on so I simply said “Yeah, sure”.
Two days later we were on a plane to the Baja Peninsula. Little did I know that this was one of the most romantic places in the world…. It wasn’t hard to fall in love there! After this magical trip, John decided to take a leave of absence from his job in NYC to travel with me through Southeast Asia for four months. A great way to get to know someone well!
After our travels, I moved to NYC where John and I lived for four years and after the birth of our daughter, Cameron, in 2004 we moved to Rye. That is when we first joined the Rye YMCA. Cameron had her first swimming lessons there. We also joined the Gym Tots program where I met lots of fun moms, some of whom are still good friends. I regularly went to yoga or Pilates classes at the Wainwright House and once in a while to a spinning class.
We left Rye in 2008 and moved to London for John’s work. After six wonderful years there, we moved back to Rye. At this point in my life I wanted to start working again. Since sports and fitness have always been a great part of my life, I decided to become a personal trainer. After some intense studying, I passed my NASM exam in 2015.
I didn’t immediately start working as a personal trainer at the Y. Instead I started as a Recess Sports Instructor at the King Street School in Port Chester, which I enjoyed very much. It’s always fun playing sports with kids. For some reason, the kids at that school always made me feel very appreciated. The smiles on their faces when they saw me coming with basketballs, soccer balls, jump ropes and other fun playground stuff is something I will always fondly remember.
However, what I really wanted to do was work as a personal trainer. Laura Laura gave me that opportunity when she welcomed me to her Fitness team. Beside one-on-one training, she asked me to help with the Basic Training class that she started and was in the process of growing. It is such a fun class to teach, everyone is so incredibly motivated, hardworking and committed. We started with only three classes a week and now there are seven in total.
It’s wonderful working at the Rye Y. Everyone is always so positive and happy! I’ve got a great boss in Laura, who has taught me so much and my colleagues (and clients!) are awesome. What else could I wish for?!
I’ve been a member of the Rye Y for five years. My personal trainer, George Lambrecht, suggested that I join when he began working here. I initially joined because of the convenience and the opportunity to train with George. Even though I could have joined other health clubs in the area, I decided to keep my membership at the Rye YMCA because I like it here.
I like the atmosphere and the environment. I come to the Y regularly and it’s great to be part of a community that is conducive to achieving my goals. It’s not competitive here and there is a strong support system. I value the Y’s culture. I appreciate all of the different personalities and characteristics of the members. I enjoy that I am able to work out and interact with so many interesting people at the same time.
Although it’s difficult for me to find time due to my busy schedule, I hope to get back into swimming once the weather warms up. I am also looking forward to enrolling my son in summer camp and having him involved in programs here at the Y.
Lukie: Once upon a time there was a little boy named Lukie. He was a half a year old. And he took swimming lessons and he liked sports. The end.
I’m four. [Now] I have a sports class with an even bigger court! It’s 80,000 inches longer!
I have Tuesday swimming lessons. I have sports [here at the Y] on Thursdays and I like t-ball and hockey.
Susan: what class did we go when you were little? Did we go to Dawny Dew and Ellen Watermelon? Did you like that?
Lukie: A lot! Guess what? On movie day we got goldfish and goodie bags.
Susan: Lukie started coming here when he was six months old. Lukie and my granddaughter Ava both started swim lessons here when they were each six months old. I’m Lukie’s grandma; the children call me nannie. And I am so very lucky, I get to watch my grandchildren during the week. It’s a joy and privilege to be such an integral part of their lives.
Lukie: o-k, but I’m a little bit done with this now.
Susan: o-k. We love coming here and we made a lot of friends. And now we’re going to go back and have some lunch.
I’ve been at the Rye Y 20 years since September. I started part time with the teen program then I became a building supervisor. I’ve been going to the Y since I was a pre-teen. I started with the New Rochelle Y where I learned how to swim and went to summer camp. I was a counselor in training, a junior counselor and then a counselor.
Once I started working here, I stayed. When I was in college, working another job, I always stayed part time at the Rye Y. No matter what else was going on, I was always here. I don’t think I would feel right otherwise. It is a part of my life.
As a building supervisor, we try to maintain order in the building. I usually come in the evening so I close the building down, make sure everyone is out. But more importantly, I get to connect with all the teens, all the members and the staff. I’m moving around, talking to everybody.
The connections are the main thing. It is amazing because some of the members who were teenagers when I started, are grown and still come. Sometimes I see them in town and they have their own families now and are adults! It doesn’t seem like 20 years! Even staff, like Coach Kate’s daughter Megan, was a little baby when I first met her and now she looks almost 6 feet tall. I can go on and on. I see people come in with their babies, do the tour, join and then their kids are off to college. You build these relationships and they stay. The relationships you build over the years with staff and members are what matters.
We joined the Rye Y because I was looking for activities for our kids and looking for an alternative to our health club. It was really expensive. For the cost of a membership for my husband and me there, our entire family could come to the Y and have money left over for Child Watch.
My toughest challenge is finding the time to come in. I have to plan for it. You can’t just do it because you have to. It is so rewarding when you get in and get on the machine and find your joy. You have to find what works for you and for me that is thinking of it as a fun activity. Otherwise, I’m not going to roll out of bed at 5:30, 6:00 to get a workout.
Mainly I do the Arc trainer. That is my favorite machine. I dance on the machines. I get some crazy looks from time to time because I make it a party. I don’t want exercise to feel like a chore. I smile while I exercise. Smiling is like taking emotional vitamins. As hard as that is to do, it is life- changing. They say fake it until you make it and eventually the happiness bubbles up inside. Sweating out the bad stuff makes me happy. Zumba with Martha is amazing – it is so fun. If you can feel joy while moving, it makes for a healthy lifestyle.
The best part of the Y is the people who work here – from the minute you walk in the door. The people I meet at the Y are energetic and positive. That always surprises me. The trainers in the Fitness Center are always willing to answer questions. There is no judgment. I’ve worked with Amanda for five years and no matter how many times I fall off, she follows up with me. No matter how many months, weeks, days, it’s been since I’ve been to the gym, when I come back I’m welcomed back with open arms.
I know that if I’m struggling, she is there for support – whether I’m getting personal training or on a cardio machine. All the fitness trainers are there to answer questions and help – about a machine or a stretch or about form. They are willing to help you. That makes the experience top notch. It’s great customer service and I put that above any membership fee.
I came to the Rye Y when I was seven. My parents signed me up for summer camp here. I was going to the camp until I was about 14. Once I was 15, I became a camp counselor. I worked for seven summers, on and off as a counselor in the Sports and Discovery camps.
After a certain point, maybe four years ago, I started working here during the year as a sports instructor. I was doing the after school programs. I was working recess at Osborn School. I was doing the Youth Basketball League on the weekends and youth soccer, t-ball–pretty much every sport that we’ve done here. It was a lot of fun being able to go to the different schools. A lot of times, when I come here to work out, I see these kids that I worked with years ago. They recognize me and remember my name so that lets me know that I left a lasting impression on them.
Now I still work here as a gym supervisor on the weekends and I substitute for the building supervisor. I’ve stayed at the Y because it’s really comfortable knowing all of the staff and knowing the facility and everything that goes on here. Working with kids, it definitely helped being here as a kid. Knowing how things go and being able to give what was given to me when I was a kid is nice.
I work at Wells Fargo in Armonk during the week. On weekends I work at the bank and here at the Y. I also go to school at Baruch College in the city. I’m looking forward to getting my bachelor’s in finance in May.
I’ve been here through so many transitional phases, since before the renovation. When I started going to camp, it wasn’t even based at Osborn School. I’ve been able to see the growth here. I think that’s pretty incredible. It’s a good thing to be a part of.
My experience at the Rye YMCA began when I started working as a summer camp counselor for the Kinder Camp. At the end of the summer, The Childcare Director offered me a position in the After School Adventures program. Most recently, I was given the opportunity to work in Child Watch and in the Pre-school Enrichment Program.
The best part of working at the Y has been the relationships I’ve made with the children I work with and their parents. I often see children from the Pre-school Enrichment Program being dropped off at Child Watch. Their faces light up when they walk into the room and see me. They always make me feel welcome. It’s such a good feeling that I am valued here. I feel as though I am part of a community at the Y.
I never thought that my position as a camp counselor would open so many doors for me and lead to other opportunities here at the Y. I plan on continuing to work with children in the future and the skills I have gained from these programs will be beneficial in the years to come.
I started coming to the Y when I moved here from Brazil about three years ago. I was already doing triathlons and events like that in Brazil, so I wanted to find a way to continue that here. That’s what brought me and my family to the Y initially, and it is also where I made some great friends here in Rye.
I take Denise’s Power Cycling class. Denise is a great instructor! I always look forwards to her class, one of the best parts of the week! More than that, the members in that class are loads of fun and we have become pretty good friends.
I did my first Ironman over the summer and the Y became my second home as it is where I did most of my indoor training.
My family also enjoys the Y. My husband is currently training for his first half ironman, but even before that, he was an active user of the fitness center and pool. My kids are teenagers so they tend to come more often in the winter time to exercise or to use the game room. This winter, I may even get them involved in the swim program.
The Y has been a great way to keep our whole family active, move into the Rye community and meet new people.
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