the y is back
As Houston gyms were given the green light to reopen on May 18 by order of Gov. Greg Abbott, members have been anxiously awaiting opening announcements of their particular fitness centers. The popular YMCA of Greater Houston, which operates dozens of locations in the Greater Houston area, has announced that it, too, will return with phased-in exercise programs.
Starting June 1, the YMCA will reinstate fitness-related programs and services, including outdoor group exercise, lap swimming, and summer day camp, according to an announcement. “The Y” — as it is commonly known — will announce reopen schedules at a later date for fitness centers, indoor group exercise, child watch, additional youth programs, and more.
The reopened centers will operate Monday through Saturday, from 7 am to 8 pm — with the exception for summer camps and child care. Schedules for outdoor group exercise and lap swimming will be available on the YMCA of Greater Houston website no later than Tuesday, May 26.
The YMCA also encourages members and the community to stay engaged through its virtual platform, which offers exercise classes and activities for kids and families.
Amenities and facilities available June 1 include:
For outdoor group exercise, lap swimming, summer day/teen camp or child care for essential personnel:
- Fort Bend Family YMCA
- Harriet and Joe Foster Family YMCA
- Lake Houston Family YMCA
- Langham Creek Family YMCA
- Mark A. Chapman YMCA
- D. Bradley McWilliams YMCA
- The Woodlands YMCA at Shadowbend
- Tellepsen Family Downtown YMCA
- Trotter Family YMCA
- WD Ley Family YMCA
- Weekley Family YMCA
For outdoor group exercise and lap swimming only:
- The Woodlands YMCA at Branch Crossing
- Brenda and John Duncan YMCA
- Monty Ballard YMCA at Cinco Ranch
- Perry Family YMCA
- Vic Coppinger Family YMCA
For summer day/teen camp (through September 1):
- Alief Family YMCA
- Conroe Family YMCA
- EA Smith Family YMCA
- MD Anderson Family YMCA
- Houston Texans YMCA
- Thelma Ley Anderson YMCA
- TW Davis Family YMCA
- West Orem Family YMCA
To comply with the reopening order and COVD-19 safety concerns, the YMCA is instilling procedures including the following guidelines:
- Outdoor group exercise capacity will be determined by the square footage of the defined activity area per 120 square feet, (meaning there should be 10 to 12 feet between participants)
- For the aquatic environments, the Y will be conducting chemical checks every hour, sanitizing pool decks daily and regularly cleaning rails, handles, etc.
- Members will be required to register for classes online and to check in upon arrival
- Members are encouraged to wear face masks while checking in and waiting for their activity to begin; a majority of staff will be required to wear face masks (based on area of work)
Additional updates on specific plans can be found on the YMCA of Greater Houston's official site, Facebook, and Instagram @YMCAHouston.
“We are looking forward to seeing members June 1 swimming in the pool, doing group exercise outside and teens and children connecting with each other in a safe camp environment,” said Stephen Ives, president and CEO, YMCA of Greater Houston, in a statement. “As we get more comfortable and understand the processes that need to take place and see how things happen in our community, we will gradually reopen much of what was happening before. While things may not be the same, we have to adhere to social distancing and take precautions to do our part to keep the community safe.”