New Safety Procedures in Child Watch June 25, 2014 No Comments

kidcheck (3)Central Bucks Family YMCA has implemented a new safety check-in procedure in their Child Watch area.

Beginning June 23, the KidCheck system will be utilized full-time at their facility.

KidCheck is a secure children’s check-in system that will enhance the Y’s security system and simplify the check-in process. The program will ensure that no one can pick up a child without the consent of the parent who dropped the child off at the facility.

An online site is available for parents to setup an account and create a list of who can (and cannot) pick up their child. Photos of the child and the approved adults are also added for extra security and the site can also be used to update medical and allergy information for children. The system is completely confidential.

The Y’s Child Watch is an in-house babysitting service used by members and guests while they utilize the facility. Youth using the Child Watch area are engaged by child care professionals in active play, crafts, snacks or reading activities. Members of the Y are able to utilize the Child Watch area up to 2 hours per day.

For information on the new child check-in system, members are invited to connect with Caitlin Beaudoin at 215.348.8131, x1138.

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Summer swimming is here. Is your child ready? June 20, 2014 No Comments

DSC_2159Excited about the summer season? Sure.  But along with the fun and excitement of summer are the dangers of swimming. The Y offers a few important safety practices that are imperative to keep in mind when children are in or around the water this summer:

  • Adults should constantly and actively watch their children, even if they are experienced swimmers.
  • Inexperienced and non-swimming children should wear a Coast Guard approved life jacket.
  • Young children in the water should have an adult within arms reach at all times.
  • Only swim when and where there is a lifeguard on duty. Never swim alone.
  • Children and adults should not engage in breath holding activities.

Still think your child could use a little swim-skill refresher or additional confidence boost in water? The Y has many swim lesson options for children to suit any ability level and schedule.

Group Swim Lessons always emphasize safety components in each class. A portion of one class is devoted to water and boating safety as well. Group lessons are available throughout the summer at a variety of times. Check our current brochure for full details.

AfterCamp Group Lessons are a great way to schedule an additional group lesson for your child while they are at camp. Register your after-campers for a 4:30 swim lesson and our staff will pickup your child from their camp group and walk them to the lesson. You have the option of picking them up from the lesson or from their usual pickup spot with the camp group. Child must be registered in the after-camp (late pickup) program. Please connect with Ashley to setup this great service for your aftercamper, 215.348.8131, x1409.

SwimSmart is perfect for families with busy summer schedules because the class intensively fits 8 classes into a two week time frame. Swimmers participate in lessons 4 times a week for 2 weeks. SwimSmart is great for families who have camp or vacations planned during the summer.

Private and semi-private swim lessons are always flexible and are offered at a variety of times to suit your needs. For more on private lessons, visit here.

 

The Y is all about safety and we urge you to connect with us at any time if you have any questions about your child’s swim ability. A free swim evaluation can be scheduled at any time to help you understand your child’s needs. Financial assistance is available for swim lessons too. For questions about Financial Aid, visit here.

Connect with Ashley Coticchio at any time with questions about these or other aquatics programs, 215.348.8131, x1409. Have a great and SAFE summer. We’ll see you at the Y!

 

Central Bucks Family YMCA is a charitable non-profit organization whose purpose is to improve the quality of community life. The Y strengthens the spirit, mind and body of its members. We build character by promoting the values of caring, respect, honesty and responsibility.

 

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What’s in a name? | Blog by Diane Check June 12, 2014 No Comments

Diane Check, THRIVE participantAfter our initial meeting with the trainers, past participants and those in our THRIVE group, it’s on to the real stuff … to learn about the machines, the exercises and the twice-a-week routine at  Central Bucks Family YMCA.

Opening the glass doors and viewing the exercise equipment at first can be very intimidating.  After all, my personal “workout” is a few leisurely laps around the neighborhood, but only when it’s nice out.  Or, to lift a few bags of groceries from the car, but only when necessary.  The reality of what THRIVE is all about is starting to kick in.  Our group, five women who affectionately call themselves the Moonlights, gather around the equipment for our inaugural lesson of what the night and program is all about.

We were introduced to several different pieces of equipment.  Layman’s terms call them a treadmill, an elliptical and a recumbent bike.  But after close examination of the machines, I see names like CYBEX, XR6000, X-RIDE and PRECOR – and they are big and ready for action!

Not only does each machine supply a much-needed workout, several have video monitors, phone plug-ins and even a fan to cool our overheated faces and keep us comfortable.  So, as we walk miles on the treadmill, we are able to quietly call out the letters for Vanna to turn on Wheel of Fortune, or maybe just get lost in the playlists on our iPhones as we pedal away on the recumbent bike.  Either way, CBFYMA is filled with top-notch equipment and top-notch staff … a real blessing!

As a cancer survivor you consider everything a little bit different.  After all, there could be lasting effects from the treatments that may cause a weakening of muscles or even nerve damage.  I personally wondered if I would be able to really get into the exercising part of THRIVE, after all, my body has gone through so much can it really endure a regiment that including biking, walking, weight lifting, conditioning and rowing.  I had to put my faith in the personal trainers that surrounded us and let them show us, in our own strength and abilities, how to get through each exercise, machine and workout.

Now about those names!  One of the best parts of joining THRIVE is meeting all the new faces in our group and also the trainers.  Each time we’re there, a friendly and smiling face comes over to introduce themselves.  So far, we’ve met Phyllis, Megan, Suzanne, Chris and Cathy who gently guide us through the routine and watch over us to be sure we’re doing them right.  It’s a good feeling to know that they really do care about us.  They just don’t care about our physical needs, but take the time to stop and listen to our stories.  Stories filled with comparisons, questions, highlights, lowlights and victories!  Even as we finish our hour in the gym area and gather in one of the wellness rooms, we share our hopes for a better us and are so appreciative that they are part of our journey.

Now comes the second part of our night−the physical conditioning.  We’re introduced to our floor mats, hand weights and exercise balls, each with its own purpose:  to get us stronger.  Our attendance card has listed some odd names on it.  Names like Glute Bridge, Tricep Kickback and Lateral Raise. At first, we may giggle at Bird-Dog, but once we are on our hands and knees stretching as far as we can, we no longer giggle, but enjoy the health benefits we are earning.  We choose our own weights (3, 4, 5 or more lbs.) and do lats, squats, curls and presses.  Once foreign names, but now a welcome check mark on our cards.

And as we meet each night, we not only enjoy the benefit of exercise and wellness, but of friendships that are forming.  Our little group called the Moonlights are all in this together.  We are laughing as we flop on the mats, or smile as we encourage each other for one final lift, or listen at the end of the night as an encouraging quote is read.

We may have started out not knowing the names of the machines, trainers or exercises, but we now know the name that surrounds us when we come together at the Y certain weeknights, and that name is THRIVE!

Diane Check, THRIVE participant

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Hitting the Wall | Blog by Leia Barrett June 9, 2014 2 Comments

Leia Barrett, Instructor at Central Bucks Family YMCA

Leia Barrett, Instructor at Central Bucks Family YMCA

This past weekend I ran my first half marathon. I will call it a run rather than a race, because my intention was to cross the finish line, time was not a factor. Leading up to the run, I was not nervous that I was about to go 13.1 miles on foot, a length I have never attempted and in a location I had never visited. I was looking forward to the views along the route in Annapolis, Maryland. Not once did I think about the course route, specifically, whether there would be hills. 

The first 6 miles I ran at a consistent pace as we passed the turnaround for 10K runners, but then came a gigantic bridge that went straight up, or so it seemed. No worries, I thought. I got over it without a flinch and then noticed another bigger hill following my descent on the bridge. The course went on like this for 7 more miles. Up. Down. Up. Down. Up. Up. Down. Up. I cheered stragglers on as I passed and encouraged those I saw begin to walk. My legs were getting tired, but I saw the turnaround for the 10K folks and knew the finish line was just ahead. But the route took an unexpected turn to another hill. I hit the wall.

The last couple days since the run I have been angry at myself for walk-running the last mile and a half. I have been angry at myself for letting my thoughts get the best of me. I have done nothing but judge myself and make excuses.

It occurred to me that there is much more to be angry or downtrodden about in this world. A race is not one. I should be proud of my accomplishment. I should let my thoughts go, because they are nothing but what I feed into them–not fact, not fiction, just nothing.

You may be thinking, what does this have to do with anything?

I say, EVERYTHING.

We all hit the wall at some point, or many times, in our life. We tend to go mental, when really it is as simple as one foot in front of the other. Going forward. The process may not be so simple, but the direction is clear. You can not go backwards or linear, there is only forward.

Along your route you may see people dropping like flies or zooming ahead. You may begin to talk yourself into quitting too or maybe trying to pick up the pace to catch up with the pack. You will see broken marriages, and phenomenal parenting, and perfect houses, and hateful children, and heartache, and death, and incredible joy. And yes, quitting is an option. And yes, picking up the pace is an option. Neither right nor wrong. But maybe, just maybe where you are, not in your head, but where you are, against that wall, is exactly where you… are.  Life is going to go on around us without our control. But we can choose to move forward by putting one foot in front of the other, as ridiculously hard as it may be. We can take each moment as they come, rather than thinking what is ahead or what we left behind. We can embrace the moment, people, and life around us without judgement.  It’s not a race to the finish line, it doesn’t even have to be a consistent pace. Moving forward is a constant, the natural ebb and flow of life. Don’t miss the moments along the way to enjoy the view, even the hills.

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Healthy Aging Tips for Active Older Adults May 29, 2014 No Comments

May is Older Americans Month, and as a leading nonprofit dedicated to improving the nation’s health and well-being, Central Bucks Family YMCA offers the following tips to encourage older adults in Bucks County live healthier lives. Central Bucks Family YMCA will be celebrating the Y’s Senior Health and Fitness Day giving away smoothie coupons to the older adults in their classes on Tuesday, June 3.

  1. Have fun with your food. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be boring! Have fun with your fruits and vegetables by trying them fresh, frozen or canned. Find a new recipe that uses a different source of protein or find a way to incorporate fish or beans into an old favorite. Remember as you age, it’s important to eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat or fat-free dairy and lean meats to help your body get the necessary nutrients.
  2. Fill up on fiber and potassium, hold the salt. As you age, your body needs more fiber rich foods to help it stay regular. Aim for a variety of colorful foods on your plate (i.e. fruits and veggies) to keep fiber rich foods a part of your diet. Additionally, increasing potassium along with reducing sodium or salt may lower your risk of high blood pressure. Fruits, vegetables and low-fat or fat-free milk and yogurt are good sources of potassium.
  3. Tweak your routine. To get the recommended 30 minutes of daily physical activity, change your routine to 10-minute sessions throughout the day. For example, stand on one foot while brushing your teeth to increase balance, and do squats while washing dishes to increase strength. To increase your cardio, take the stairs instead of the elevator or park farther from the entrance to work. When sitting in front of the TV, march during commercials or do some light stretching to break up sitting for long periods.
  4. Get social. Socialization is an important part of aging. As we get older, it’s important to be active socially to stay healthy. Take a walk with a friend or a neighbor, join a book club or volunteer at your local pet shelter or local Y. Being connected to the community keeps you healthy!
  5. Take a snooze. It’s important to get seven, but no more than nine hours of sleep at night to keep you healthy. A lack of sleep has been associated with elevated cholesterol and blood pressure. To help get those necessary hours of sleep, leave mobile devices in another room, not in the bedroom. Digital distractions can disrupt your sleep.

For more information on how your family can live a healthy, active life, visit www.cbfymca.org or contact Rebecca Miller Russo at 215.348.8131, x1185.

Central Bucks Family YMCA is a charitable non-profit organization whose purpose is to improve the quality of community life. The Y strengthens the spirit, mind and body of its members. We build character by promoting the values of caring, respect, honesty and responsibility.

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