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Join healthy connections with new classes at the ELYMCA

By Staff | Jan 22, 2016

BARB BARRETT/The Luminary Left to right: Elisa Allen, Samantha Terhorst, and Stacy Eckert demonstrate the new UrbanKick class offered at the ELYMCA on Tuesdays and Fridays.

MUNCY – Don’t let the winter blues take over your spirit for fun and recreation this season. There is an immediate solution to beat the cold weather with the nearby East Lycoming YMCA. The year 2016 introduces a lot of activity, classes and pool time for every age group.

The benefits are endless and branch executive director, Gail Kulp likes to refer to the Y “as a community that is dedicated to helping individuals achieve a balance of spirit, mind and body.”

A group exercise marathon was held on Sunday, January 3rd to introduce new group exercise classes. Each class (a total of 10) was held for about 20 minutes back to back, and participants received a free tee shirt. “It was just a great time,” announced Kulp.

A popular class, Urban Kick, demonstrates a total body workout using no equipment and is good for conditioning. Using kickboxing techniques, it is the latest fitness trend according to Elisa Allen, Wellness Director at the ELYMCA. She teaches the class every Friday morning at 9 a.m. and Tuesday evenings at 5:30 p.m.

Another strength building exercise class that’s new is the Kettle Bell Amped. It is 60 minutes of calorie burning with amplified heart pumping music and held Thursday mornings.

BARB BARRETT/The Luminary A new arthritis class held on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons for seniors and older adults is now offered in the heated pool at the ELYMCA.

The ‘Barre’, another class that debuted this season, introduces some ballet moves on the ballet bar. It is less toned down than the kettle bells, and is “great for orthopedic stretching and a carved out core,” replied Allen. “We focus on small muscle groups.” The class is suitable for any age level and all fitness abilities.

There are multiple classes this year for seniors, Kulp explained. “Circuit Central” is a class for beginners designed to improve the cardiovascular system. Seniors can come and build muscular endurance as well as balance, agility and coordination. Some props are used such as hand-held weights, elastic tubing and a balance ball alternated with non-impact aerobics.

Seniors also enjoy the Boogie Boot Camp held Monday and Saturday mornings at 9 a.m. in the gym. This favorite class helps progressing seniors focus on a total body workout using interval exercises. “Our Monday morning classes are always busy,” added Kulp.

Yoga is another class commonly praised by baby boomers and seniors, and this year PiYo has been added. This class combines Pilates and Yoga to help increase and maintain flexibility. “These classes are great, because seniors can also enjoy monthly social events,” Kulp said. “Seniors can be active and find camaraderie, connect and strengthen relationships.” Also offered are nutrition seminars, and Silver Sneakers, a senior Y program offered three mornings a week.

In the pool, which is heated at 87 degrees according to Chris Busby, aquatics director, seniors can enjoy water aerobics and new this year is an arthritis class held Tuesday and Thursday afternoons starting at 1 p.m. “The water classes are good for any fitness level, and improves joint movement.” Busby said. Techniques include small group training and low impact in the pool to strengthen muscles and weak joints. “This is also a good class to take for rehab and physical therapy,” explained Busby. Private swim lessons are also available in the pool and open swims take place on Saturday afternoons and evenings during the week at 8:15 until 8:45 p.m.

New cardiovascular equipment arrived at the ELYMCA on Wednesday, Jan. 13th.

A special license was acquired to show recent movie titles and on Friday, January 29th at 6:00 p.m. the Minions will be playing in the pool. These “Dive-in movies” for the entire family will be offered each month until the summer, then “we hope to go outside,” Busby added.

Also starting this year will be a diabetes prevention program. “It is upcoming and will include a comprehensive diet with correct carb choices,” said Allen. Also coming in February is a fat loss program consisting of two weekly sessions at 30 minutes each and will be held in the morning and early evening. Allen continued, “This will be a nationally recognized program. It is making a shift in your lifestyle, and to fuel yourself for success.” The course will teach how to balance proteins, carbohydrates and fats.

New equipment has also arrived and can be seen in the wellness center with red bows on them. New treadmills, rowers, and cardiovascular elliptical machines were purchased to replace some of the older equipment. “This is our gift to our members,” Kulp said and noted that anyone who joins this month will be eligible to win a 50″ flat screen TV or a three day, two night getaway. All programs and classes are included with a membership.

For the die hard fitness addicts, Stacy Eckert, program director, pointed out a new suspension training class in the gym known as TRX. This class only holds ten and it is typically full, she related. “The program was developed by the Navy Seals as part of their training, and now it’s used by the Y as a program for fitness.” It is a national program with a certified trainer.

The entire family can enjoy the Y. For youth, there are basketball leagues, summer camp, swim teams, bitty sports, and starting next month will be “Kids Run Y” a program renamed from Small Strides. Registrations will open next week according to Kulp. Also coming in February will be the Red Cross Blood Drive. Another one will be scheduled next summer.

Located in Muncy Township, the ELYMCA is all about strengthening communities, and programs are family oriented for all diversified skills and abilities. They can be reached at 570-546-8822.