PSA: Boston YMCAs Have Some Pretty Cool Classes

Many branches offer trendy classes like Pound, BollyX, and rowing.


The YMCA’s new Pound class/Photo provided

To put things mildly, Boston has a booming boutique fitness scene. New barre, yoga, bootcamp, and cycling studios launch seemingly every week, and fitness junkies fork over hundreds of dollars a month to take their classes. But one workout gem has been hiding in plain sight all along: the YMCA.

Yes, the Y, where you learned to swim and where your dad hits the treadmill every day at lunch, has a booming group fitness scene. We’re not just talking ho-hum step aerobics, either. Lots of branches offer trendy classes straight out of the boutique fitness scene.

Case in point: Three local YMCAs—the Huntington Avenue, East Boston, and West Roxbury branches—just began offering Pound, a popular drumming-based workout that’s popular nationwide. Depending on your local branch, you can also find TRX, BollyX dance, rowing, rope conditioning, and other specialty options, in addition to classic offerings like Zumba, bootcamp, yoga, and strength training.

Even better, you can take the Y’s classes for a day pass rate of $15, which also gives you access to the entire facility. Membership prices vary slightly branch to branch, but range from $30 to $50 a month for single adults, or $75 to $97 a month for a family plan. For context, unlimited monthly memberships at specialty studios often hover around $200, if not more.

Sure, you won’t find luxury cosmetic brands or cucumber water in the locker room, but at those prices—and when your membership benefits a bevy of community services—that seems like a worthy sacrifice.

The YMCA has 13 Boston-area locations. Find more information at