By Chelsea Cullen Joslyn, Communications Director for the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina

After the winter weather we’ve had, it’s hard to believe summer is just around the corner. The spring months are the time to prepare and plan so that your family has a fun, safe, and healthy summer.

There are a few things you can do now to ensure your family is ready for summer:

1. Get safe around the water. Swimming is a life-long skill that everyone can enjoy, regardless of age. Among its many benefits, swimming teaches children life lessons of sport and sportsmanship, so they can learn how to work well with teammates and coaches and how to deal with winning and losing. The Y encourages children and adults to have fun and enjoy the various benefits of swimming, but to always make safety their first priority. The Y recommends children and adults practice the following safety tips when in and around the water:

– Only swim when and where there is a lifeguard on duty; never swim alone.
– Adults should constantly and actively watch their children.
– Inexperienced or non-swimmers should wear a Coast Guard-approved life jacket.
– Parents or guardians of young children should be within an arm’s reach.
– Children and adults should not engage in breath holding activities.

2. Enjoy springtime and get healthy tips for summer at Healthy Kids Day.Summer is the time for kids to get up, get out and grow. But for some kids, exposure to activities that stimulate the body and mind ends with the school year. In fact, research shows that kids are prone to gain more weight and fall behind in studies. This April, YMCAs across the county will celebrate Healthy Kids Day®, our national initiative to improve the health and well-being of kids. Join us for this free event full of games, healthy activities, and ideas to keep your kids intellectually and physically active this summer. Visit to see what’s happening at a YMCA of Northwest North Carolina branch near you.

3. Feel your best by summer.
There is too much to enjoy about summer to worry about how you look and feel. In April, the Y will launch new sessions of the popular Get on Your Weigh weight management program. The 8-week program provides the support, motivation and professional instruction you need to make healthy lifestyle choices a way of life. This program incorporates group workouts twice a week, nutritional information, and support from a personal trainer in a friendly competition, where the first place winner receives a 3-month Adult Membership. This program is designed for overweight adults who are at the novice/beginning fitness level. Learn more at

There’s a lot happening at the Y this spring! With our new location in downtown Winston-Salem at Innovation Quarter now open, it is a great time to get familiar with all the Y has to offer from hot yoga studios to state-of-the-art training centers to outdoor water parks to two convenient downtown locations. Learn more about membership here.

We hope to see your family at the Y to help get you ready for the best summer ever!

*Sponsored by the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina