Tag Archives: schedule

There is Irony Here

There is such irony in writing an online blog about unplugging to get out to play, but with our increasing reliance on technology and time spent with our noses in our devices, it seems like an okay medium to pass on a message.  Enough about the great irony of reading online about disconnecting from it all, it is now time for my point…

A main obstacle preventing people from unplugging and playing is the convenience and the availability of other types of entertainment.  It seems more convenient to turn on the television, the game system, the computer, or the smart phone instead of going outside to play.  You also don’t need to get dirty to watch television or play a video game.  I work with youth, and what stands out the most is that passive leisure and inactivity is becoming a habit for those of us who are growing up with technology.   This needs to change for the health and wellbeing of everyone.

In his research in 2008, R. Tagles said that “…the absence of direct experiences of natural environments appears to be a significant disadvantage in terms of development and health, and may also have a negative impact on the preservation of natural environments.”  We need these natural spaces around, for food, for activities, for industry, for the health of the planet, and most importantly our own sanity.

I do not feel the need to preach.  I do not feel the need to tell you to throw away all of your technology.  I am not going to tell you to go live in the bush for a month.  Feel free to do any of these things if that is what you wish.  What I am here to do is to share some learning about the benefits of unstructured time in the outdoors, natural areas, things that grow, living actively, and share with you the enjoyment that can be gained from creating balance in our ever technological-focused lives.

When we try to do too many things at once, as it happens so often with technology, it takes away from our relationships, health, focus, work or school, and most importantly our overall enjoyment of what we are doing.  Even what may seem like the most mundane of tasks can be enjoyable if is becomes our sole focus.

This coming Monday, March 23 is “Unplug and Play Day” used to help to recharge your soul.  It is a small step to take to help to focus on enjoyment here and now as well as help to create balance.

This day is a great idea, but I say take it one step further.  It is better to regularly take a little time to unplug and try just focusing on one thing.  Call it “uni-tasking”.  An easy way to do this is to go out and experience nature, or to visit your local recreation facility.  Leave all those gadgets at home and see how enjoyable just being outside of the house looking at the environment around can be.

For some ideas, here are my top “uni-tasks” that I do here and now:

  • Do some “soul skiing” by going for a day on the slopes (no music here);
  • Practice some nature/outdoor photography or drawing (I’m not very good, but it is enjoyable);
  • Bomb a hill on my longboard;
  • Do some gardening;
  • Climb a mountain, a rock face, a hill, a tree, a playground or anything I can possibly jump off;
  • Find a quiet spot to read or journal;
  • Simply go for a walk or long run without my phone.

I want to hear from you!  What do you do to live in the here and now?  How and where do you like to enjoy “uni-tasking”?  Comment here!


YMCA Calgary Flames Grade 6 Drop In Floor Hockey

shawnessy gr6 floor hockey

Yesterday we hosted our third session of our grade 6 drop in sports sessions here at YMCA Shawnessy, it was a lot of fun and a nice workout.

Our grade 6 members played floor hockey in the gym, we had two teams playing mini games of the first team to 5 points, then took a water break and switched up the teams.

The next session of our grade 6 drop in sports will be on Wednesday 28th of January 2015, from 4:50pm to 5:50pm all grade 6 members are invited!

Tomorrow, Friday the 23rd of January 2015 we will be hosting a Movie night in the preschool room (located next to the family center) from 5pm, we will be watching Finding Nemo! So come along and relax with your friends and watch a great movie.

Philip Perryman

Youth Coordinator Shawnessy YMCA

email: philip.perryman@calgary.ymca.ca

Scheduling Time to Un-Schedule

CyclersThe schedule for today:

  1. Wake up;
  2. Eat breakfast;
  3. Go to school;
  4. Come home;
  5. Have a snack;
  6. Do some homework;
  7. Go to a program;
  8. Have dinner out;
  9. Go to another program;
  10. Do chores;
  11. Do more homework;
  12. Have a bath;
  13. Go to bed.

The schedule for tomorrow:

  1. See above schedule.

Kids these days all seem to have schedules similar to the one above.  To go along with it are the demands of getting good grades, pressure from family and peers, and just growing up in general.  There are unwritten rules that kids need to learn and understand.  Adults are not the only ones with a lot going on these days.  In this time of over-scheduling, kids need to schedule in some un-scheduled time!

Here are some ways that kids can de-stress through the practice of un-scheduling:

Exercise: Run, walk, kick a ball, punch a punching bag. There are so many things that help kids release the built up frustrations.  Just 20 minutes can provide up to 12 hours of improved mood.  Getting active has so many benefits for calming a busy mind.

Write, Colour or Draw: Writing or drawing about what is bothering them is a great release and easy way to get rid of frustrations.  Getting it onto paper gets it out of the mind.

Listen to Music: Dance and jam out with the music playing.  There is just something calming about rocking out to your favourite tune.

Build or Create Something: The process of making something unique and new from scratch creates a great way to relax.  There is also something that can be used when it is done too.

263485_10150701105325253_1631203_nSocialize and Laugh: Spending time with friends and family who give a sense of belonging, purpose and fun may provide all the stress relief needed.  Not to mention a good chuckle relieves the built up tension.

Eat Well and Get a Good Night Sleep: Healthy eating and good sleep patterns are fundamental of living a well balanced life in a positive way.  Things just seem that much better with a healthy body.

Go Outside: The outdoors has a great calming effect.  Get back to nature, see the sun, explore a park, play in the leaves or snow… Just get up and go.  (October 29, is “Take Me Outside Day“)

The most important thing is to make a schedule change by finding something that kids enjoy and to just go and do it!


We want to hear about what you do to help kids de-stress through un-scheduling.  Share your stories on the YMCA Facebook page or on Twitter.



Drop-In Schedules

Welcome to our new website! We think it looks pretty neat, we hope you do too.

It’s a little different than our old site, and we’re excited about some of the features. Like our new Drop-in & Facility Schedules.

To find the Drop-in Schedule for your YMCA Calgary location, hover your mouse over “PROGRAMS, LOCATIONS & MEMBERSHIP” and click “Drop-in & Facility Schedules” on the right hand side.


In the box that will pop up, you’ll be able to search for the YMCA Calgary location, class name and class day and time of your choice. You can see what’s happening at other locations too.



Another way of seeing the schedule is downloading the PDF version.

Hover your mouse over “PROGRAMS, LOCATIONS & MEMBERSHIP” and select a YMCA Calgary location from the drop down menu on the right.


On the page that appears, you’ll find info about your chosen location, including hours, program guides and amenities. Click the dates under Download PDF Drop-In and Facility Schedule for the schedule you want to look at and/or print.



The printable schedule looks like this:



Have fun exploring our new site! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to get interesting articles, photos, and updates on what’s happening at your YMCA.

New Karma Yoga Class

Group yoga class

A new Karma Yoga class begins at Eau Claire YMCA on Thursday, March 6, 2014. This drop-in class will run from 12:50-1:30 in Studio C/D.

Karma yoga is a gentle, yoga-based class. It revitalizes body & spirit by blending practices of breathing techniques, stress reduction, flexibility and muscular strength.

Yoga classes at YMCA Calgary locations are taught by certified yoga instructors. This class is suitable for beginners.

Go ahead – get your yogi on!

5 Activities You Didn’t Know You Could Do at the YMCA


The Eau Claire YMCA has 2 squash/racquetball courts. You can book online or by talking to member services. There are even racquets you can use.

Tai Chi

There are multiple Tai Chi classes offered throughout the week at a number of YMCA Calgary locations. This ancient martial art is about centering your focus and improving your mental and physical stamina. Other martial arts offered include Hap Ki Do, Capoeira, Karate


Parkour is a whole body sport aimed at getting around the urban landscape in the quickest, most efficient way possible – using only your body and your surroundings.

It uses movements like rolls, jumps and climbing in combination with free running; freestyle gymnastics. Youth can learn moves to scale walls, jump gaps, balance on rails, and climb poles. There are classes offered to youth at a number of YMCA Calgary locations.

Belly dancing and Social Dance

Move your hips and learn to coordinate dancing with a veil in belly dancing classes with other women. Or, as a couple, you can learn the basic steps for classic dances like the Fox Trot, Rhumba, Waltz, Jive and Two Step.

There’s even a children’s cooking class for 3-5 year olds!

The South Health Campus YMCA is part of the South Health Campus Wellness Centre which includes a Wellness Kitchen. The Cookie Monster’s class gives kids the opportunity to learn about nutrition and food preparation by making some simple and easy recipes. And they get to eat what they make!
Check out our program guides to learn more about the classes and programs available to you and your family!!

Registration (members) for Spring and Summer sessions opens February 24.

Saddletowne Program Guide Cover




Challenge Yourself with Capoeira

Capoeira is a Brazilian martial art that will challenge you both physically and mentally.

In a ‘game’ of Capoeira, two opponents ‘play’ in a circle or roda (pronounced hoda) and try to ‘outsmart’ the other with kicks, blocks, evasions, handstands, cartwheels, hooks/trips, etc to the rhythm of the berimbau – a unique Brazilian instrument.

Capoeira can be modified through skill progressions for beginners, intermediate players and those who are more advanced. It is great for people who want to try something new & exciting to improve their strength, agility, balance & coordination in a unique and fun class that helps to build camaraderie through friendly competition.

At Saddletowne YMCA we offer the following classes on Tuesday evenings:

Youth Capoeira (6-11 years)
Beginning January 7
Tuesdays 6:15-7:15pm
Barcode: 86253
M$88 NM$132 (11 classes x 60 minutes)

Adult Capoeira (12+ years)
Beginning January 7
Tuesdays 7:30-8:45pm
Barcode: 86243
M$110 NM$165 (11 classes x 75 minutes)