YMCA of Greater Toronto

Latest Updates & FAQ

Answers to many of your most commonly asked questions are below. We continuously update this page with new information. If you still have questions, please contact us.

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IMPORTANT UPDATE:

As of March 21, 2022, we are updating our mask and vaccination policies.

Participants, staff and volunteers are no longer required to wear masks in our Health and Fitness centres. We understand that each individual lives with different circumstances and vulnerabilities and may make decisions that are different from others. If you feel more comfortable wearing a mask, we encourage and support your choice to do so.

Also, please note proof of vaccination will not be required after March 21, 2022.

Frequently Asked Questions



Access

How can children and youth access the YMCA health and fitness centre?

  • Children under 10 must be accompanied by someone 16 years of age or older at all times
  • If you’re 13 and up you can use all spaces inside the YMCA on your own.
  • If you’re 10-12 you can use all spaces on your own except the conditioning room floor. Children 10-12 years of age must be accompanied by someone 16 years of age and older on the conditioning room floor.

Do I need to book my individual conditioning workout ahead of time?

No, you do not have to book your time on the conditioning room floor.

Can I bring a guest to the YMCA?

Yes! Guests can purchase a day pass and staff will help to schedule them in for any programs. Guest passes are subject to availability.

How do I book my Group Fitness, Rec Sports and Aquatics time?

You can book your Group Fitness, Rec Sports and Aquatics time using our Sweat for Good app.

You can also book by using our live chat function or emailing us. We encourage you to give our app a try, though. It’s super easy and means you won’t have to wait for one of our staff to get back to you.

As of March 21, 2022 we are changing the booking window from seven days to 24 hours in advance. We hope to limit the number of people who are not showing up to their scheduled timeslots. Please be patient as this change will take a week to fully implement.

Where do I get the Sweat for Good app?

The Sweat for Good app can be accessed via our web portal or through our mobile app on both Android and IOS operating systems. Click here to register.

When should I arrive for my Group Fitness, Rec Sports, Aquatics booking?

You should arrive for Group Fitness, Rec Sports or Aquatics 15 minutes early to allow for check-in and screening.

I noticed a family booking option for swimming and rec sports. What does this mean? 

Yes.

Members should book group fitness classes, swimming and rec sports ahead of time in order to reserve their spot. You can also do these programs as a drop-in, subject to availability.

Is the YMCA a cooling centre during heat warnings?

Yes! Five of our Health and Fitness Centre locations are designated 'Cool Spaces' under the City of Toronto's Heat Relief Strategy. West End, Central, Cooper Koo, North York, and Scarborough YMCA are offering pool access and water fountains to the public during Heat Warnings. Please Click here for more information.

Safety Measures

Do I have to wear a mask?

Participants, staff and volunteers are no longer required to wear masks in our Health and Fitness centres. We recognize that each individual lives with different circumstances and vulnerabilities and may make decisions that are different from others. If you feel more comfortable wearing a mask, we encourage and support your choice to do so.

Will you require proof of vaccination before entering the health and fitness centre? 

We are no longer requiring proof of vaccination to participate in programs or to access our facilities.

Will you have hand sanitizer available?

Hand sanitizer will be available in multiple, high-touch areas throughout the building and outdoors. You are also encouraged to wash your hands with soap and water frequently, when possible.

Should I wipe my own equipment down?

Disposable sanitizing wipes will be available to wipe your equipment down before and after using it. Staff will be focused on ensuring high-touch areas are routinely disinfected.

Why are you waiving the requirement for participants in your centres to be vaccinated and/or masked?

The Government of Ontario’s recent decision to lift most pandemic related restrictions and requirements indicates that based on high vaccination rates in the province, we are now learning to live with and manage COVID-19 for the long term. While the YMCA has taken a more cautious approach to easing restrictions throughout the pandemic than many organizations, we feel it is time to align more closely with this latest guidance from public health.

While the Y will no longer require participants to demonstrate proof of vaccination or wear masks, we understand that individuals have different comfort levels. With this in mind, we will ensure that anyone who chooses to continue to wear a mask will feel welcome and supported in doing do.

Moreover, we will maintain our vaccine requirement for all YMCA staff and volunteers, which was put in place to protect one another and the vulnerable communities we serve, including thousands of children who are too young to be vaccinated. We ask everyone visiting our centres to self-screen for COVID-19 symptoms before entering any of our centres. And we are continuing to operate well-ventilated spaces and maintain the enhanced cleaning protocols that have been in place throughout the pandemic.

As we have done throughout the pandemic, we will continue to monitor the situation and are prepared to reinstate protocols as required.

Why aren’t you doing more to protect vulnerable individuals, including young children who do not qualify for the vaccine?

Effective March 21, 2022 we’ll be aligning with provincial guidelines while at the same time:

  • Requiring staff and volunteers to be vaccinated
  • Asking everyone to self- screen before going to the YMCA and refrain from entering if they are experiencing any symptoms
  • Operating well-ventilated spaces where those who want to wear masks are welcome to do so
  • Maintaining the enhanced cleaning protocols that have been in place throughout the pandemic
  • Continuing to offer outdoor and virtual programming alternatives for members who need these options to stay active

I’ve recently come back from international travel. Is there anything I should know about visiting your centres?

Under current federal travel requirements, upon return from international travel, individuals must wear a mask at all times when in public spaces (including YMCA locations) for a period of 14 days, maintain a list of all close contacts and locations visited during the first 14 days in Canada and monitor for symptoms. For the most up-to-date information, please refer to the Government of Canada’s Travel Restrictions and measures for each province and territory.

Programming

How can I access the Virtual Y?

If you are a member the Virtual Y is included in your membership. You can access the Virtual Y through the Sweat For Good app. If you haven't already done so you can register for the app here

If you are a non member you can sign up directly for the Virtual Y here

What happens to outdoor classes when there is inclement weather?

In the event of inclement weather, please check the Sweat For Good app to make sure your group fitness class is still on. We will post any cancellation on the community page.

I’m interested in volunteering. How can I do that?

Thank you for your interest in volunteering at the YMCA of Greater Toronto!

Our volunteer opportunities are always changing and you can visit our Volunteer Opportunities page periodically for the latest updates. If you are interested in any of the positions we have available, please complete our online volunteer application to begin the process. If you are a previous volunteer and would like to return, kindly connect directly with your staff partner. Should you have any additional questions about volunteering, please email volunteering@ymcagta.org.

Applicants who are accepted as a volunteer or student placement are required to provide proof that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or have a valid medical or other Human Rights Code-related exemption prior to their start date and as a condition of their volunteer role. Our team will ask for these details at the end of the screening process

Can I bring my own equipment (e.g., yoga mat, small weights) to group fitness classes?

Absolutely! In fact, at this time we are encouraging members to bring their own small equipment.

Do I need to bring my own equipment to racquet sports?

We highly encourage anyone who has equipment to bring it in.

Children's Registered Programs

When will spring/summer children's registered programs be available?

Registration for Spring/Summer 2022 children’s programs begins on April 11, 2022. Visit My Y on that day to sign up for:

  • Martial Arts
  • Swimming
  • Soccer
  • Basketball
  • And more

How can I get swim lessons for my kids?

The next available sessions will be spring/summer 2022 registered programs. Registration starts April 11, 2022. Go to the My Y site on that day to reserve your spot.

Winter 2021/2022 swim lessons are currently in session and registration is now closed.

Will I be able to watch my child’s class?

It depends on your local Y. Some locations have a designated area where family members can watch the child and other centers have limited space available. Depending on your location, you may need to make arrangements to wait elsewhere until the class is over.

Do I need a Gii (uniform) for martial arts before the first class?

If your child is a beginner, they do not need to buy a uniform. Have them try it out for the first few weeks to decide if they like it first.

Will grading still happen for Karate and Taekwondo?

Yes, grading will still happen during the last week of the session. The instructor will notify you if your child is ready to grade, at which point you can register and pay for the grading on My Y portal

How do I cancel my child’s program?

To cancel your registration please login to your My Y account

If you have any questions feel free to use our virtual chat function to get a hold of our member services team.

Please Note: At this point we are not adding any more spots so if you wish to keep your child’s spot secured we encourage to keep your registration.

Membership & Payments

What happens to my credit if I extend my hold or stop my membership?

If you decide to extend your hold or stop your membership, your credit will stay on your account and you can use it for YMCA programs and services in the future.

I was charged while you were closed. How do I get my credit?

If you have a credit on your account, it will be automatically applied to future payments.

Please note this may take some time as we are currently doing a review of all Health & Fitness memberships across the GTA. Once this review is complete, we will notify you.

If I’m uncomfortable coming back to the Y, what should I do?

We understand and have a few options for you:

Will there be any adjustment to my fees due to your closure?

Please note, our centres have now reopened and we've started charging membership fees as of February 5, 2022. As a result of this, some members may see a small adjustment in their amount owing for the month of February or March.

Once we have finished reviewing your account, you will receive an automated email that will direct you to the My Y portal where you will be able to see a breakdown of your fees. We expect all adjustments to be completed by March 31, 2022.

How do I cancel my membership?

To cancel your membership, please visit the payment updates page.

Aquatics

Are swimming pools open right now?

Yes. Our swimming pools are currently open. Schedule your visit through the Sweat for Good app.

Are showers/saunas/steam rooms/whirl pools open?

Yes. Showers, saunas, steam rooms and whirlpools are open. Visit the What’s Available page to find out what’s available at your Y.

Will we have access to equipment?

Yes, you will have access to some equipment. Our staff is regularly disinfecting buoys and kickboards after each use. Please leave used equipment in the designated "used equipment" area near the exit so we can clean it for the next swimmer.

Will I have to schedule my visit to the pool?

Yes, you should book your swim times before your visit. You can also choose to drop in, but space is subject to availability.

As of March 21, 2022 we are changing the booking window from seven days to 24 hours in advance. We hope to limit the number of people who are not showing up their scheduled timeslots. Please be patient, as this change will take a week to fully implement.

What are the guidelines for using the whirlpools, steam rooms or saunas?

Starting March 1, 2022, members can access the whirlpools, steam rooms and saunas with no capacity restrictions.

Is there a limit to how many people can be in the pool for lane swim?

Yes. As of March 1, 2022, we are increasing our lane capacity to four people per lane.

I noticed family options available for swimming bookings. How does this work?

Swimming bookings with the Family label mean you are reserving a spot for you and five other members of your household to use a section of the pool for the duration of the booking.

You must schedule this activity using the Sweat For Good app.

Participants younger than 10 must be accompanied by a caregiver who is at least 16 or older.

One family swim booking equals up to six people in your household.

Program availability varies by location. Find out what’s available at your Y.