Girl Showing Off Art in YMCA Visual Arts Class

Even with busy schedules and dark, wet weather there are opportunities for healthy activities and the chance to unlock your potential for the year ahead.


From January 1-17 we are waiving the $100 membership fee to join and offering new members the choice between one FREE week of Summer Day Camp at a local Y or a FREE Health and Well-being program, such as Powerlifting, Weight Training, Kettlebells, Running Series, or our Lazy Man Ironman. Virtual and in-person tours are available.


“We’re open, we’re safe and we have new livestreaming sessions coming soon to help people fit healthy choices into their schedule,” said Michael Marquez, executive director of the University Y Student Center in Tacoma.


To make healthy routines more convenient and accessible, we recently opened a new studio to create on-demand and livestreamed programs. Our locally produced segments are available through YMCA360, the virtual platform YMCAPKC contributes to alongside Y locations across the country. New classes and sessions on YMCA360 include exercise, healthy cooking, arts, mindfulness and more.


Feeling good about yourself starts with mental health, Marquez said. If you’re not in a good space mentally, typically all aspects of your life will suffer a bit—including your physical health. The Y addresses those aspects through its community focus and holistic approach (spirit, mind, body).


“At the Y we go out of our way to ensure that you are being heard and connected with other people to help create meaningful connections and relationships,” Marquez said. “The connections are really what make the Y stand apart. People create these communities with routines that help keep each other accountable, offer positive interactions and pick one another up at various times of turmoil or struggle.” 


More people are returning to the supportive environment of the Y, including the University Y Student Center in downtown Tacoma. Marquez said students are eager to be out of quarantine and exercising again, yet there’s an even bigger draw.


“They are most excited to make friends. One staff member said the primary reason she wanted the job was to meet people.”


We strive to be more than a gym, offering a welcoming environment where members build community and meet like-minded people.


“The support the Y offers through our communities and positive atmosphere can really help people become mentally fit, while also taking care of yourself physically,” Marquez said. “It will immensely help your mental fitness if you can surround yourself with people who are going through similar experiences or people who can help lift you up when you are struggling.


“The Y is a beacon of togetherness, happiness and taking care of yourself.”


When you visit the Y, please remember that masks are required indoors, except when eating and drinking, or actively using the pool. YMCAPKC community centers are conducting as many activities as possible outdoors. Improved covered outdoor areas are planned for some YMCAPKC locations in the future.