Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Who can become a member of our YMCA?
A: The YMCA is a membership organization open to all people. Our primary service area includes but is not limited to the New Canaan, Pound Ridge, and South Salem communities. The four core values of all Y’s are caring, honesty, respect, and responsibility which we extend to everyone who walks through our doors. We firmly believe that everyone belongs here, regardless of race, age, ability, religion, sex, national origin, or financial circumstance. Financial assistance is available to ensure that our Y is accessible to all members.

Q: How can I find out about becoming a member?
A: The best way to learn about the New Canaan YMCA is to come in, meet us, and tour our facility. Tours are given anytime our membership desk is open. In addition to showing you our facility, we’ll spend some time getting to know you better. We’ll find out more about your health and wellness needs and personal goals to be sure that you’ll get the most of out of your membership.

Q: Is the YMCA a charitable organization?
A: Yes, we are a not-for-profit organization, recognized by the IRS as a 501(c) charitable organization. The YMCA and YWCA are both not-for-profit organizations that function independently, with a separate but strong mission. All donations made to the New Canaan YMCA are tax deductible and are used to subsidize program costs or to provide financial assistance to those in need.

Click here for more information about making a donation.

Q: What are the Y’s hours of operation?
A: Monday – Friday 5:45 am – 10:00 pm
Saturday 7:30 am – 6:30 pm
Sunday 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Q: How do I join?
A: If you decide to become a member, you can sign-up at the front desk. You’ll complete a Membership Application Form, get your photo ID in our system, and receive your membership card. You’ll need a check to activate our bank draft system and get you started, or you may pay by credit card (either MC or VISA). Our bank draft agreement includes our membership policies and procedures and a signed copy will be returned to you for your records.

Q: Can I join the Y online?
A: At our YMCA, connecting with our members is extremely important to us, and we believe that a face-to-face interaction is critical to ensure that we meet your needs and help you achieve your goals. For this reason, we do not offer online registration for membership. Although you can download a Membership Application Form online, registration must be done in person. If you are interested in joining our Y, we encourage you to visit us and meet with a Member Relations Staff Member to first have a tour and discuss your membership needs. Tours take about 20 – 30 minutes and will help ensure that you get the most out of your membership. Once you are a member, however, you can register for individual programs either in person at our Y, or by utilizing our online registration on this website.

Q: What is the YMCA 30- Day Membership Guarantee?
A: Should you decide to stop your membership within the first 30 days, you may request and will receive a full refund of the joiner’s fee and your monthly dues.

Q: Are wellness classes included in the membership?
A: Yes. Over 50 classes or programs are available for adults, free-of-charge, with a membership including a variety of classes in our Group Exercise Center and Mind Body Center, Spinning classes, and Water Fitness Classes. Most classes are offered 2-3 times on a weekly basis. Schedules of all our classes with a description of each class can be picked-up at the front desk. For the sports-minded, adult volleyball and men’s basketball are also offered. Except for spinning classes, no pre-registration or sign-up is required.

Q: What types of classes do you offer?
A: Whether your goal is improving endurance, building strength, or increasing flexibility and core strength, you’re bound to find strength in numbers in one of our group exercise classes. Here’s a sampling: Yoga, Pilates, Spinning, Group Step, Group Kick, Group Power, Group Active, Fit and Functional, T’ai Chi, Qigong, Circuit Challenge, NIA, Zumba, Arthritis, Core Fusion, and a number of Water Fitness Classes.

Q: Do I need to be a member to participate in programs at the New Canaan YMCA?
A: Yes you do with the exception of a few of our programs such as Y Guides, Basketball, Pre and Post-Natal and Arthritis Classes, Middle School Madness, Red Cross Babysitting Certification and Live Well – our Chronic Disease Self-Management Program. Please review our current brochure for specific, up-to-date listings of non-member classes. Note that our fees for all programs and classes are reduced for our members.

Q: How do I register for programs?
A: Members can register for programs at our membership desk or online. Programs at the New Canaan YMCA are scheduled for 4 sessions through the year – winter, spring, fall and summer. Our members always receive priority registration which typically begins two weeks prior to the start of the session. Click here to register for our online registration system (link). NOTE: Can also review our Online Frequently Asked Registration Questions. To ensure ease of use, we recommend getting online prior to registration. Also, note that many classes have limited enrollment, and all registrations are taken on a first come, first serve basis.

Q: Do you offer massage?
A: Yes. You can enjoy the physical and mental benefits of massage, conveniently offered for all members in our Men’s and Women’s Center. Appointments are made by members or non-members, directly with our licensed, massage therapists. NOTE: Non-member rates are higher than for members. Receipts should be given to the massage therapist at the time of the massage.

Q: Do you have WiFi?
A: Yes. We are now equipped with WiFi throughout our facility! Our service is complimentary and Netbooks can now be borrowed from the front desk at no charge. To sign out a Netbook, come to the front desk with a photo ID and a major credit card which will be held until the Netbook is returned.

Q: Do my membership fees go to help others in need?
A: No. Your membership fee helps us cover our facility operating costs, but doesn’t go towards assisting those in financial need. Donations to our annual giving campaign help fund memberships, programs and services for those members who are experiencing financial hardship and qualify for assistance. Your support helps us to fulfill our work around three main areas of focus: youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility.

Q: Do you offer childcare while I exercise?
A: My Playroom gives parents the opportunity to participate in Y programs, classes and activities with the peace of mind that their children are being cared for in a safe, nurturing and loving environment. We care for babies 6 months and up (children are required to sit up on their own) and young children can play and make friends while you work out. No advance reservation is necessary. Come to the front desk to purchase individual, or punch cards passes (15 hours of babysitting) at a nominal fee. Hours: Monday – Friday 8:15 am – 1:15 pm; Saturday 8:15 am – noon; Sunday 9:00 am – noon. To find out more about our hours, policies, procedures and fees, pick up our Parent Handbook at the front desk.

Q: How much does it cost to become a member?
A: Our membership fees vary depending on the category of membership you select. There is a one-time joining fee and monthly membership fees. Our bank draft payment method allows you to terminate your membership (a minimum of 7 business days notice is required prior to your bank draft date); there is no contract, so you can stop your membership at any time.

We recommend you come in for a tour to help you determine which membership category is best suited to your needs.

Click here to learn more about our membership categories.

Q: Who can be included on a family membership?
A: Family and Single Parent Family Memberships are defined – based on IRS Guidelines – to include head of household and all dependents. Tax return documentation is required for children/dependents over the age of 18. Senior Family Memberships are also available if you are over the age of 62. See the Front Desk to receive a 25% subsidy.

Q: What do I need to bring?
A: For your first visit, remember to bring a towel and a lock and wear comfortable clothing. Men or Women’s Center membership includes towel service. To apply for a Kit Locker, see the front desk. We strongly recommend that you secure personal belongs. The Y is not responsible for lost or stolen items.

Q: What payment options are available?
A: Adult and family memberships may be paid monthly through automatic payment from your checking account to the YMCA. Not only is “bank draft” a convenient payment method, but it also provides you with a continuous membership that will never expire unless you request it. Bank draft method also gives you the freedom and flexibility to make membership changes as outlined on our Bank Draft Agreement. Should you decide to terminate, termination forms can be picked up at the front desk. Be sure to sign and submit your form for processing at least 7 business days prior to our bank draft date. No faxes or e-mails are accepted. A one-year membership can also be purchased by paying with cash, check, VISA or MasterCard.

Q: Does the Y offer financial assistance?
A: Yes. The YMCA strives to serve everyone in our community regardless of economic circumstances. Financial aid applications for YMCA programs and membership may be obtained at the Front Desk or on our website. The application process is confidential and requires proof of financial need. This assistance is made possible by donor contributions to the Y’s Annual Support Campaign. For more information, go to Financial Assistance on this website.

Q: Can I get a membership refund?
A: Adults join the New Canaan YMCA at no risk; if you are not pleased with your adult or family membership, we will refund your membership and joiner fee within the first 30 days of your joining. Memberships are non-transferrable and, after 30 days, non-refundable. No refunds for pre-school, youth or student memberships.

Q: Can anyone use the Wellness Center/do strength training?
A: The Wellness Center is available to members age 15 and up. Members who are 12 – 14 years old may be admitted with completion of an 8-week Youth Strength Training course. Upon graduation, participants take practical and written exams to test their skills and earn their F.I.T. pass. This program teaches sound principles of strength training, aerobic endurance, and muscle conditioning. A certified personal trainer teaches proper technique as well as Wellness Center safety. Youth strength is free for Family Members.

Q: What’s a Teen F.I.T. Pass?
A: The F.I.T.(Families in Training) Pass allows teens ages 12- 14 years old to use the Wellness Center from 2- 5 pm Monday through Sunday after successful completion of the exam at the end of an 8 week Youth Strength Training class. Fit Pass holders may work out with their parent at any time, promoting family fitness and fun in a safe environment. Teens can also earn a F.I.T. Pass by completing 10 sessions with a personal trainer and successfully completing the Youth Strength Training exam. F.I.T. classes are free for family members!

Q: What’s the best way for me to get started on a Strength Training Program?
A: When you join our Y, you are eligible for two, complementary training sessions in our Wellness Center where we’ll show you how to use our equipment and create a program just for you. We’ll make sure you understand the benefits of each exercise and ensure the machines are adjusted properly. You’ll be safe and feel confident as you get in great shape!

Q: Can I bring my own trainer with me to the Y?
A: No, but a variety of personal training packages are available at the New Canaan Y for all ages, abilities and workout needs. We’ll help you met your personal goals and perform at your peak level. Our personal trainers are either certified by ACSM (American College of Sports Medicine) or an organization that recognizes CECs (Continuing Education Credits). Come to the front desk to complete our Personal Trainer Registration Packet.

Q: Can I “try the Y” or visit the Y for just one day?
A: Non-members may purchase a “one day only” guest pass. Drivers’ license or passport must be copied at the front desk and waiver signed prior to facility usage. Guests are afforded the same privileges as members and are expected to follow the same rules and guidelines as our members. We encourage all our guests to tour our facility to find out how they can get the most out of their membership.

Day rates: 0-14 years: $5, 15- 21 years: $15, 21 years or older: $30

Q: Can I use every YMCA with my membership?
A: The Y A.W.A.Y. Program (Always Welcome at the YMCA) entitles a member to have membership at over 600 participating YMCAs across the country (outside of New England), typically at no charge, or at a priority rate of that YMCA’s guest fee. We recommend you contact the Y you are visiting or view their website to determine their Y-AWAY policy.

The Membership Reciprocity Program is a benefit offered to those members who maintain an active membership at their home Y within the New England States. New England Y members visiting Ys in New England may visit other YMCAs at no fee, however, restrictions may apply. Each Y is required to post information on their website detailing any restrictions so we recommend that you check their website or directly contact the Y you are visiting to determine their policies and/or restrictions.