8 Reasons You Should Bike at the Y

The last two years turned our world upside down and made our everyday routines come to a screeching halt. Businesses closed, temporarily and permanently, and people had to reshape and refocus how they were going to live their lives and make a living. All of a sudden, your job, your grocery shopping, and working out all became online.


Now as more businesses reopen and adapt to the new needs of their community, it's important to get out of the house, experience life and create new routines. The Y has remained strong in serving its community, welcoming new and returning members with open arms (while social distancing, of course). Our staff is always excited to see happy faces and instructors are enthusiastic to teach group exercise classes again.

Old habits die hard, and we understand that you may have gotten comfortable while turning your world to digital. At-home workouts became the rage, especially cycling, however, that typically meant buying your own equipment and subscriptions, which can be a hefty price. But as nice as on-demand resources is to have in your back pocket, to some, there's nothing like going to the gym and surrounding yourself with those who are also trying to better themselves and reach their wellness goals.

If you're one of those people that are on the fence of breaking your digital routine, here are a few reasons you should take cycling classes at the Y, instead of at home: 

1. Meet new friends



Alright, first step is to get away from the screen and start interacting with humans again! By getting out of the house and going to the gym, you'll meet new people, make new friends, and even meet other cycling enthusiasts. Better yet, bringing or meeting a new friend in a class will keep you motivated to reach your goal and attend more classes. When you exercise with a friend or group of people who have the same interests as you (cycling) and has the same goal as you (improving your health), you’re more likely to encourage each other and to push a little harder than you might do on your own. There's nothing like group morale!


2. cost effective

Cycling, or any workout, from home can be expensive, more so than just buying a gym membership. As many people witnessed during the pandemic, trying to continue your workout routine at home meant buying your own equipment, such as a bike, and possibly even a subscription for on-demand services, as some companies require. By going to a cycling class at the Y, not only is the equipment provided to you for individual use, but our cycling group exercise classes are included with your membership! Members never have to worry about finding a space for a bike in their home, nor the expense of buying and maintaining it. 

3. live instruction

Are you tired of playing the same few on-demand classes or seeing the same few faces of the instructors that record these workouts? Do you also see right through the empty motivation that is an outcome of pre-recorded workouts? Fear not, our certified cycling instructors take you through each class with different workouts, music, and instruction every time! In addition, our instructors like to turn it up a notch with specialty cycling classes, themed classes & music, holiday workouts, outdoor events, and even our very own mini-triathlons! Just like meeting new people, you'll experience live, face-to-face interactions and never get the same old recording. By participating in person, our instructors can motivate and support you in the moment, while giving advice that's tailored to you to make your cycling experience a better one. 


Unlike other private cycling studios, all group exercises at the Y are unlimited, cycling and all! You don't have to pay a per class fee or subscription to only attend a limited amount of classes per month. We encourage to attend as many as you want, within your limits, of course!



Our instructors assist with fitting members safely to their bikes prior to class start by adjusting seat, leg position, and handle bars so you don't hurt yourself and to optimize your ride to your body. Each class starts with warm up and ends with stretching cool down. Our instructors can make recommendation for shoes, pads, and other accessories or equipment, that will make each ride that much more pleasurable, and will motivate you to keep cycling. Additionally, you can connect a heart rate monitor via the Keiser app which also tracks your heart rate, cadence range dials, Functional Threshold Power (FTP) zones, and W/Kg ratios. All of the Y's Cycling Studios are equipped with Keiser equipment, to ensure safety, easy riding, and maximizing your workout. Most importantly, safety among numbers. In a group setting, instructors monitor signs of stress in participants in the event of an emergency, whereas you're typically alone when working out from home. 



Despite what you have heard, cycling doesn't just work out your legs. Cycling is a full body workout and uses all of the major muscle groups as you pedal. Our instructors take it further by including arm and body stretches and exercises before and after each class. Cycling is also good for strength and stamina and increases aerobic fitness. According to Livestrong.com, a person is average to burn 300-600 calories in a standard 45-minute class, depending on weight and speed. So what are you waiting for?


7. lOW iMPACT 

For those of you worried about injuries by taking a class, cycling is low-impact, meaning there is minimal impact on the hip, knee, and ankle joints. Our instructors know when to motivate you, but also know to encourage going at your own pace. Unlike pre-recorded on-demand workouts, our instructors take the time to get to know you and your limitations. Part of our programs, include embracing one's strengths and weaknesses and never pushing you to go over your physical limits. 



Not only can you meet new people, you can get in on the fun by joining cycling challenges, either on your own, with a group of people, or by participating in Y challenges through the SAY Mobile App. Better yet - join our February Cycling Challenge starting February 1! What a better way to start your cycling journey, try different classes, meet different instructors, and challenge yourself in a fun, competitive way. 




If you're not a member yet, join the Y family! Whether you're new to cycling, or itching to get back into a group setting, we're here when you're ready to find your passion or try something new! Our cycling offerings continue to grow in size and frequency as the demand for group cycling classes increase and you don't have to have a lonely workout! Plus when you join the YMCA, you're not just a member of a gym, you're part of a community that is here for everyone. To support your physical, mental and social health needs with programming and activities for all ages, interests and skill levels. Whether indoors in our clean, sanitary facilities, outdoors in our pools, or through our virtual programs, we are here when you’re ready and we can't wait to welcome you!



Scared of commitment? We understand... Try the Y for free with a 7-Day Trial membership! Our trial memberships provide potential members with 7-day access to use the fitness center, weight room and participate in lap swim or group exercise classes at the Berkeley Heights YMCA & Summit YMCA.


Questions? Contact:


Health & Wellness Director


(908)273-3330 Ext. 1137




In 1886, we were founded as the Young Men's Christian Association, but today, we are The Y. An association that values, and is made stronger by, its diverse people. We stand for youth development, healthy living and social responsibility — For a better us. We are committed to creating equal opportunity for all regardless of gender, age, disability, income, ethnicity, sexual orientation or religious affiliation. We strive to create a welcoming and inclusive culture in which our four core values — responsibility, honesty, caring and respect — are integral to everyday operations.

Each year, as one of the area’s leading 501(c)3 charitable organizations, the Summit Area YMCA serves more than 15,000 individuals with our free and fee-based programs and services in an area spanning the New Jersey communities of Berkeley Heights, Gillette, Millburn, New Providence, Short Hills, Springfield, Stirling and Summit. Our history is rooted in working side-by-side with our neighbors to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. Through the generosity of our members, donors, and partners, we are able to offer financial assistance for our programs and services to those in need.