YMCA Logo
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147 User Reviews

6.7

Overall Score

LAST UPDATED: November 15th, 2021

Founded in 1844 in London, the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) is the oldest operating wellness facility of its kind in existence. The original purpose of the organization (and its female counterpart, YWCA) was to provide low-cost housing in a safe Christian environment for rural young men and women journeying to the cities for work during the industrialization era. The YMCA combined preaching in the streets and the distribution of religious tracts with a social ministry. Philanthropists saw YMCA as a place for wholesome recreation that would help to deter youth groups from the temptations of alcohol, gambling, and prostitution. Today, YMCA programs throughout the world still hold strong to the values of caring, honesty, respect, and responsibility. These values continue to be taught in its facilities today to help teach children right from wrong. YMCA has since developed a culture of fitness and wellness at its locations communities with paid gym membership programs and fitness classes that promote healthy living. The association conducts many different types of outreach and social programs to raise awareness of its services, and currently serves over 10,000 neighborhoods across the United States.

 

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The Good

  • Price and contracts
  • No hidden fees
  • Cleanliness
  • Classes
  • Trainers and nutrition
Price and Contracts
The YMCA lists its membership prices upfront, which include a recurring monthly membership ranging from $47 to $55. For $90.00 a month, a family can join. This membership can be paid monthly, or annually in one lump sum. YMCAs across the globe also promote healthy lifestyles through fitness and nutrition by allowing their communities to access their exercise equipment and take group fitness classes for a very affordable rate. If you can't afford the monthly fee, you can "pay-as-you-go" for $10 for a full day pass. For $10, you can take any class for free or use any of the facilities' amenities, from the pool to the basketball court to the weight room. There are also special perks for seniors, who can get a free membership under the Silver Sneakers program offered through certain insurance plans. As a community center, YMCA also offers financial assistance for those in need. Applicants should bear in mind, however, that they would have to go through a full paperwork process, and provide information W-2s. Also, YMCA may disqualify anyone receiving public assistance-the demographic that needs this help the most.
No Hidden Fees
While many gyms we found had hidden fees, the YMCA does not. Pricing is pretty straightforward but a few members ran into additional fees with family memberships. Most gyms we reviewed have at least one or two "hidden fees" customers encounter after joining; but the YMCA does not seem to follow suit.
Cleanliness
The level of cleanliness at the YMCA depends on the specific location; however, most tend to be clean and well kept despite the caliber of neighborhood. Members are responsible for cleaning any equipment they use, and YMCA provides disposable paper towels to wipe the equipment down. Staff maintenance overall appears to be consistent at keeping the facility clean.
Classes
The YMCA offers an average of over 700 classes each week. This is the most out of almost any gym or fitness center we reviewed. Classes cover the broadest base of activities in the industry and are tailored for beginner, intermediate and advanced levels, so members can choose which level is best for them. Most national gyms do not offer levels, just one class for everyone. This can be problematic for a novice to take an advanced class and risk injury. The YMCA's classes include low-impact group exercise and chair classes, stretching and strength training, indoor cycling, boxing, boot camp, water exercise, tai chi, Couch to 5K Beginner Running, yoga, and X-PLODE Group Training. The YMCA also provides massage, pool, locker rooms (you have to bring your own key or pay for one), mind and body rooms, an indoor track (in suburban locations), and a full-length basketball court and skating rink.
Trainers and Nutrition
All YMCA locations offer one-on-one personal and group sessions with personal trainers. Members can purchase sessions in 1-, 5-, and 10-hour packages. YMCA's personal training sessions focus on goal setting, cardiovascular conditioning, muscle strength and endurance training, and overall body restructuring. Sport-specific training is also available. It should also be noted that the YMCA does offer programs for health and wellness, some of which incorporate some nutritional training. For example, they have a Chronic Disease Programs which offer nutritional consultations.
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The Bad

  • Upfront Fees
  • Equipment
  • Other Available Amenities
  • Training limitations
Upfront Fees
The YMCA has one membership type: month-to-month. The enrollment fee is $100, which is expensive, though, occasionally the Y will advertise specials where this fee is dropped. Some of the other major gyms we reviewed had similarly expensive enrollment fees.
Equipment
The quantity and quality of the equipment at the Y varies from gym to gym. Facilities in inner cities are lacking updated equipment while locations in the suburbs have all the best machines. Quantity also varies according to facility location. Some YMCAs have less equipment than others.
Other Available Amenities
As with any fitness facility, the complaints and issues will vary from gym to gym. The majority of reviews for YMCAs across the United States are positive, but there are quite a few complaints about a lot of children in the fitness area. Many fitness clubs have rules against bringing children into the fitness area of a gym. Because YMCA offers family passes and are very family-oriented, the majority of the complaints are about the number of children present at the gym throughout the day. In addition, the YMCA's many amenities are not consistent across all locations.
Training Limitations
Prices for training programs at the YMCA depend on the branch you are a member of and are not advertised; rather, they require in-person consultations with YMCA personnel. This is less favorable than some gyms that offer their pricing packaging upfront. YMCA's personal training programs do not seem to be as holistic as other gyms' in terms of nutrition and exercise training. We also found the YMCA doesn't offer nutritional plans for one-on-one training.
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The Bottom Line

The YMCA has been in business for longer than any other wellness center on earth. It also offers youth outreach programs, affordable rates, family passes, and free childcare (in most locations). And with over 700 fitness classes per week, YMCA provides one of the longest lists of fitness classes and programs anywhere. Seniors also benefit as members, with free membership under their insurance's Silver Sneaker's program. The downside to the YMCA is that amenities vary with each location. Nicer neighborhoods have better amenities while poorer neighborhoods have poor facilities. Most locations, however, are clean and maintained. The YMCA's $100 enrollment fee is expensive for a community gym, making membership enrollment expensive. Membership fees, however, are relatively affordable ranging from $47 to $55/month, depending on location. If you're looking for a place to unwind after work and enjoy a quiet, kid-free workout, you will want to look further than your local YMCA. If you have children, or don't mind children being present at your gym, then YMCA might be a good fit for you.
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Star Rating

4.3

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147 Reviews

Review Breakdown

5 grade

59%

4 grade

24%

3 grade

10%

2 grade

3%

1 grade

4%

Sentiment Criteria

Value

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Kaylee Gay Columbia, MO

I love the tradition of the YMCA, which has been one of the oldest gyms in existence and still going strong. I also love that YMCA is not only about gym membership and wellness but that there are outreach and social programs for the local community. I love how community-based it is and it's all about caring for one another. Since YMCA is based on the community that also means there are options for all ages from the youngest to the oldest.

2 weeks ago

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Ashley Nicole Jacksonville, FL

I really enjoy having a membership here. The facilities are always nice and up to date. The staff is always pleasant. Also, my gym's view is amazing and makes working out so much more enjoyable.

3 weeks ago

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Abigail Land Tallahassee, FL

Great staff and trainers. There is a large variety of exercise classes availiable. Facilities are clean and worth the price.

3 weeks ago

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Belle Pierdon Willoughby, OH

YMCA is a great place to workout. Brought my son there many times to swim and use the equipment as well as myself. very reasonable price and a nice experience. I disliked nothing during my time using the YMCA.

2 months ago

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Brittney Mac Gregor Louisville, KY

Before all the no contract gym's, the YMCA was my first choice. The equipment in my local YMCA has always been quite dated, however, they make up for it in their multitude of classes and activities. Our YMCA has a pool and a sauna, so after a work out I usually cool down in the pool or have a steam before swimming. Members also get a better rate for their swimming lessons and youth sports activities. My favorite thing about the Y, is that they offer childcare while your working out.

3 months ago

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Darrin Pelham Rincon, GA

I have always enjoyed going to my local YMCA, the staff is super friendly and helpful. The Y has a large assortment of weight machines, ellipticals and treadmills. The Y also has a large area of free weights including machines that use the free weights so there is enough for everyone to get their workout in without waiting. I definitely recommend the Y for someone to get their workout in.

5 months ago

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Elisabeth Kinghorn Nakhon Sawan, 60

I have always enjoyed my experiences with YMCA, especially with the variety of amenities available to use. The weight room is very nice and has lots of different equipment. I also love the basketball court! Finally, I love the atmosphere there and how friendly and chill it is.

5 months ago

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Steve Pitman Largo, FL

Equipment good,some look used but well maintained,staff is awsome and knowledgeable,fees are competitive,cleanliness top notch

2 months ago

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Beverly Schacher Long Beach, MS

We used the Y for youth volleyball. The quality of coaches and the facilities were excellent. We did not use the fitness equipment or have a fitness membership but could not help but notice that the areas were very clean and spacious and the equipment was plentiful and well maintained. They have all kinds of programs available to children, families, adults and seniors. The restrooms, showers and locker areas were very nice.

1 year ago

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Rika

I've been a member of the Berkeley YMCA since 1989! I love the facility and the community, most of all the women's fitness center. With my Berkeley membership I can also go to the SF YMCA and to the Oakand YMCA, I also go to the YMCA in Maui. The variety of classes is fabulous, and the price is right. I love the sauna and steam room.From young woman, through raising children ( child watch, family night, swim classes, birthday celebrations at the Y, to now entering elderhood, the Y was always right for me, kept me active and loving it!h

2 years ago

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Hannah Denver, CO

I personally have had a pretty great experience with the YMCA, although they do offer a lot of services other than the basic gym, I only use the basic gym. I wish there was a membership that would reflect just the price for gym membership to use the workout equipment and not their other amenities such as the pool and courts. I also do not like that members do not have access to the gym 24/7.

1 year ago

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Kaysha Love Las Vegas, NV

YMCA is a great company! This is the place to enjoy great summer days, clubs, classes, and gyms. What I really enjoy about the YMCA is the fact that they have so many classes for anyone and everyone. Which makes it perfect for people to enjoy this gym.

1 year ago

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Christyan Bennett Kenner, LA

I attended multiple YMCA’s such as the one in Spring Valley, California and enjoyed having a membership there. They have many things such as a gym, basketball courts, and even an indoor heated pool. This place is highly recommended and offer so many benefits for adults, teens, and children.

1 year ago

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Debby Nash

I have worked at the Dunigan Ymca for 13 years our service is excellent we take care of our members their way once and dislikes we help we have childcare where are excellent and swimming lessons and workout classes of all different levels we have indoor and outdoor tracks with a huge green sport still

2 years ago

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Mia Tallahassee, FL

There is always very nice employees here who love to help and talk to you. The classes that they offer here are very entertaining and with the best workout instructors. The gym is always clean and there is plenty of equipment so even if it is busy you typically do not have to wait for a machine, or you do not have to wait long. The prices for a membership here are not bad, and you definitely get your money's worth.

1 year ago

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Rachel F Salt Lake City, UT

I love the YMCA. We were members in Minnesota, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, and Illinois. Everywhere we lived I loved it and the childcare, kids sports programs, and environment. When I was in school I would go here and study for an hour or two while my kids played in the kids care. I also love how they have a graduated pay rate based on income. Such a great asset to any community.

1 year ago

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kristin Gneiting Pleasant Grove, UT

The YMCA is a great treasure for every community. It provides a place to go for people of all ages to enjoy working out or helpful classes on bettering your life or just on interesting topics. They house youth leagues that help our youth to grow not only athletically, but also learn to push themselves and be part of a team. YMCA brings out the best in people.

2 years ago

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Mason Allen Pleasant Grove, UT

I like how YMCA is a family friendly environment. The classes are fun and appropriate and the facility is clean. Some of them are quite old and so the pools and equipment could use some updating.

10 months ago

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Kent Harris Smyrna, TN

Very friendly staff. Plenty of equipment and classes help to get you into shape. Love it. Plus it is right across the street from where I live. Easy peasy.

11 months ago

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Dave Fortin Kingston, PA

It's okay! They have tons of equipment to use but they also charge an arm and a leg. They sometimes have programs in place for locals or families that you can be a part of to get discounts but overall, they're just like any other gym.

2 weeks ago

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Luke Swierczynski Troy, MI

Depending on where you live I feel like these can be hit or miss from my experience traveling, but the one near me has everything from a pool, gym, pick up sports games etc. Great value as well.

4 weeks ago

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Lizzy Puentes Abingdon, MD

YMCA is such a great fitness place. They have various rooms each with a different purpose. The plan also includes fitness classes they have available and you are also able to bring a guess for a one time fee. The equipment is very up to date and good quality.

1 year ago

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Lynne Bowden Sayville, NY

I took our kids to our local Y (Patchogue, NY) for swim lessons and basketball. Most of the employees were very nice and the pool was clean, but the family locker room was disgusting. Another CON is the revolving membership that doesn't stop -- EVER -- until you stop it IN WRITING, within a very small window of opportunity, which is how they get you. I tried calling the corporate office to cancel my membership, but they disconnected me about 10 times. Never again.

1 year ago

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karen engels

Good variety of classes but it would be a bonus to get a free pass issue for each 10 visit punch card submitted automatically as a reward for attending the 10 times per month, not just having name in a drawing for a prize and only having a few get rewarded each month for making the effort to get there at least 10 times per month.

2 years ago

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strecker Colorado Springs, CO

if one has a family or is elderly the prices are okay but everyone elsie hold on to your purse strings because its costly especially when my tax bracket is approx. 28% also we end up paying for their staff, bills like utilities etc... it is sad and unfortunate because I am one who has worked for non-profits organizations - they do not pay taxes and have many different tax benefits, write-offs, vendor discounts and deductibles

2 years ago

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Amy Stewart Gilbert, AZ

I have been a member of the YMCA for many years. I love that they give a family discount and have daycare available for your children to be watched while adults go and do there workouts.

3 years ago

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Alex Murphy Reno, NV

I grew up playing basketball at the YMCA. They offer great programs for kids to get out and play sports in a safe environment. They are ran by high school and college students many times so the staff isn't the most helpful.

4 years ago

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Kiara Howard Tallahassee, FL

Growing up, I would look forward to my family and I’s trips to the Y. Being able to run laugh and play is something I can always look back on and appreciate. Even today I still use there gym and I truly appreciate how kind their workers are

1 year ago

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Alice Chun Durham, NC

I appreciate the services that the Y provides for the local community. I both received some of the Y's services as a part of the swim program and also worked for the Y for a bit. They are doing much good for the community by promoting wellness and even offering financial accommodations for those struggling financially.

1 year ago

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Renee King Baltimore, MD

I absolutely love going to the Y!! So many different group exercise classes, swimming lessons, rock climbing, and the latest gym equipment are just a few of the reasons to join. The facilities are neat and clean and the staff warm and friendly. My absolute favorite class is Yoga......namaste!!

1 year ago

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Eric Salt Lake City, UT

I have been a member at several YMCAs throughout my life. Each location varies in the amenities and cost, but invariably I have had a good experience. The price is always reasonable and I like the fact that they will adjust the price for those who have difficulty paying. I also like their focus on building their surrounding communities.

1 year ago

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Mary Clarks Summit, PA

We have had YMCA memberships in 2 different states and I liked the one in Washington state better than here in PA. I liked the programs they had available and how my kids had something to do while I was working out as well. Clean and convenient.

2 years ago

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Anonymous

we have an annual family membership at the y, my mother is retired and when she is local she enjoys there yoga palaties and swim classes my son and I use the pools year round. our Y also just upgraded to a family bathroom with some amazing showers bathroom the works they also upgraded the hot tub love it at Dunmore.

2 years ago

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Amy Decker Bloomington, IN

We love the family membership at the YMCA - it’s the best value for a family gym membership. They offer plenty of activities for everybody in the family, with a lot of variety. We love their available hours, and the assistance they offer.

2 years ago

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Campbell Blair Phoenix, AZ

My boys have loved attending the YMCA to play basketball with their friends. Respectful and positive place and I know that they can have fun and not take the game too seriously. Great equipment options too for working out! The lockers are absolutely clean and amazing.

2 years ago

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Brittney Anderson Provo, UT

I love the YMCA. They create such a wonderful network of family and friends. I love all the activities and fun runs the YMCA provides. Not to mention the great coaching and people running everything. I’ve had a great experience being coached in track and field.

2 years ago

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Amanda Sherwood, OR

We currently have a family pass to the YMCA in Sherwood Oregon. I like the facility and the 12 weeks with a personal trainer (complimentary program) is helpful if you need to learn how to use the machines properly. They try and keep their equipment up to date. Their daycare is also really nice and sufficiently staffed! I just wish the facility was a little newer.

3 years ago

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Vcraft Columbia, MD

Unethical and unauthorized billing. Consumer unfriendly. Management is unresponsive when problems occur. Not as it used to be. Supervisor (Miranda) refused to acknowledge that they changed billing info to me without my consent. When registering as a member initially, supervisor (Miranda) started that she could only register one card for billing. Unclear how they got my credit card info. Even after I requested a stop to service and changed my card number they were able to bill me for yet another month using “updated services” which means you will be billed at your new card. I had a confirmation email. This was also disregarded. I was also denied access to speak with her boss EJ. At first she led me to believe that my partner at the time called and requested the change. Which means he accessed my wallet. Based on this I filed a police report. She later stated that I gave her my card and authorized its use. That in fact this person did not call. Something is not right here.

1 year ago

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Alexander Johnson Burbank, CA

I miss the y. Didn’t always have all the newest equipment but you got it done and it’s a nice community always. Generally nice ppl go to the y to work out

1 year ago

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John Burnside Colorado Springs, CO

Here in Colorado Springs, the YMCA is not the economical alternative. My wife and I were disappointed with the monthly cost for what we would actually use at the facility. The facility was clean and upscale. However, we have no kids at home now so all the services they offer for children doesn't appeal to us anymore.

2 years ago

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Sara Anoka, MN

We were not impressed with the gym set up at all and it is always packed. This place is not worth the money. I recently contacted the customer service department to cancel our family membership. I was told there is no way to cancel the membership other than physically going to the location to fill out the cancellation form. This is not a viable option for me at this time as I am traveling for work for the next few weeks and my husband is also working 12 hours a day and taking care of the kids while I am away. After I asked a few additional questions the customer service representative revealed that the site may be able to work with me in regard to the cancellation. I thought it was distasteful to have to draw that information from them instead of having them try to meet the customers needs at the beginning of the conversation. I was directed to the Andover YMCA and spoke with a lady named Sharon. As soon as she heard that I needed to cancel she was rude. I explained to her our situation and asked if my husband could cancel the membership as I am away from work. She said that they don't usually do that sort of thing but might be able to work something out. I told Sharon "I am surprised that the YMCA does not have some sort of system for its members to cancel other than having to physically be there as it is extremely inconvenient and that as a customer I would recommend not making this such a difficult process." As I was saying this she kept on interrupting me before I could finish my sentence and hung up the phone on me! So I called the YMCA customer service line a second time to register a complaint and was directed back to the person that would not help me in the first place. Thanks but no thanks YMCA.

2 years ago

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Donald Dayton Lancaster, NY

If i could I would not give any stars 1.As per the Y policy, a 30-day notice in writing is required when terminating a membership. As your February 1 draft did not process, as a courtesy, your February dues were cancelled and your membership was terminated effective 01/31/2019. Your masterkey membership gave you access to all YMCA’s in the Buffalo Niagara area, including the Southtown branch, which you mentioned in your email. In confirmation with my supervisor, January dues would not be refunded. We will waive the join fee for you and Carole, as well as for Evie, if you should decide to give the Y another try. We appreciate your interest in our community here at the Independent Health Family Branch YMCA. If you have any questions, please contact me. My step Daughter is disabled and lives at home with a seizure disorder she would not have been able to use 90% of the gym but would have used the pool. They would not work with use and wanted her to have a separate policy. Will not issue a refund because it was done over the internet. Would not recommend this gym

2 years ago

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Brinley Knowles Smithfield, UT

The fitness equipment area is super great. They have a wonderful pool and locker room that is always kept clean. I am always welcomed as I enter the gym. Such a great place to work out.

2 years ago

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Not happy

After being a plus member at this gym for over a year, I was harrassed by a staff member because apparently I was sitting too close to a friend in the hot tub, with our legs touching. I asked the staff member his name and he wouldn't tell me. I came closer to look at his name tag and he physically pushed me. I filed a complaint because I felt that this was totally inappropriate and homophobic but nothing came of it (I got a voicemail a week later from someone and was never able to get ahold of them). Tensions Rose in the changeroom and I heard stories about other members complaining about the 'intimate incident', apparently he said I was sitting in my friend's lap! I wondered whether the staff member was spreading rumours, since practically no one else was there. On my last night this staff told me I couldn't wear my bathing suit on the elliptical in the change room workout area. There was a rule on the wall so I left the elliptical. When I attempted to broach a conversation about what had happened in the past the staff refused to talk to me. When I went to the pool, moments later he was following me with another staff pointing me out. Later in the hot tub this staff asked me to speak to him privately. He reiterated the rule about not wearing the bathing suit as if I needed to hear it again. When I talked to the manager about this she claimed she had been told that I had refused to follow the rule when told. This was a lie. All in all the staff harrassed me by stalking me around the building, shamed me for being close to my friend in the hot tub, pushed me physically, lied, gaslit my claims and I suspect spread rumours. I quit.

2 years ago

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L. South Jordan, UT

Our family has loved going to the YMCA in Suisun CA, Riverside CA, and Bloomington IN. We wish there were more YMCA's around. We like the family atmosphere, reasonable prices, and the youth sports, especially basketball!

4 years ago

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Benjamin LeBlanc Dallas, TX

The YMCA fitness center has to be one of the best fitness center options out there. The price of the experience isn’t bad at all and the quality of the machinery and implements are outstanding.

1 year ago

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Alyssa Hansel Tallahassee, FL

I love the YMCA!! Super great fitness classes offered, including water aerobics, Zumba, and cycling! I love it. The community and staff are also friendly, and they even have child care-with so many toys!

1 year ago

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Tyler Oskaloosa, IA

The YMCA is perfect for all of your fitness and fun needs. It’s a great place to get a workout and make some friends. Everyone if family here at the Y and that’s truly what it feels like.

1 year ago

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take7 Sandy, UT

Preferred for our family to enjoy a variety of activities and not have to look for day care. We could do family games and sports without equipment and still do individual workouts with equipment. Was busy and crowded during breaks and could get disorganized and not clean but to be expected with the crowd and the busy area and location.

1 year ago

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Brayden Ibert Houston, TX

I love the YMCA. Everything that they stand for I love. I have a membership and I go once a week at least. They have a variety of machines and the staff is amazing. The facilities are perfect.

1 year ago