Newberry Observer

Creating a vision of growth

At the Newberry YMCA we are creating a vision for growth that will position us to better serve the community through membership, programs and community integrated health programming. Our membership base has not seen growth that is proportionate to the community over the recent past; but, we have been diligently working to pin point what we feel our internal growth barriers are and creating a plan to address these growth barriers. Two of the main components of this plan include repurposing some of our space that will allow us to expand our strength and conditioning offerings. By instituting these changes, our capacity to meet the needs of our member’s fitness expectations will be greatly increased. Once we have taken these steps to increase our capacity, we can add programming that utilizes the new operational model to better serve the community, whether it be to work with populations that are striving to reach an elevated level of physical performance or populations that are simply ready to be fit and seeking a better quality of life through enhanced mobility.

This vision includes upgrades to our cardio vascular equipment like treadmills, ellipticals, and various other apparatus used to improve wellness by increased activity. The greater impact of this project will be seen in the extent of strength training options that we may have available to our members. When the Newberry YMCA was built, and the space was utilized as it is currently, there wasn’t much evidence to support the incredibly positive effects that strength training can have on our bodies. These tremendous positive effects can be seen in every segment of the population, which contrasts with the mindset several years ago that only those interested in “bulking up” needed to be doing resistance training. We plan to offer more strength and conditioning options for the community after instituting these changes; such as: Livestrong at the Y (Cancer survivor fitness), competitive focused training (Spartan type events), circuit training (using various components to create a full body workout in a condensed period of time). Also, this will make the YMCA a more viable choice for those that desire to do more traditional strength training; but, our limited offerings have been a barrier in the past. In addition to equipment, we will be revamping some of our scheduling to better support families by expanding our childcare while people use the facility, syncing class offerings with sports practices, and seeking ways to facilitate increased family time through physical activity.

In closing, we will be reaching out to the community to gain a better perspective on what the community would like to see in their YMCA. This will be facilitated through our volunteers, members, community partners, and our staff asking questions and soliciting conversation. Those interested in sharing their thoughts can email the YMCA through the “contact us” tab on our website at or stopping by the YMCA.

Scott Sandor

Contributing Columnist

Scott Sandor is the CEO of the Newberry County YMCA, he can be reached at 803-276-9936.