A few weekends ago, I was out in the Kansas City, Kansas area, traveling for work. I wasn’t originally going to get in a work out, but the timing of the day “worked out” in my favor, allowing me some extra free time. So instead of being a normal human being, and simply touring around the downtown area, I decided to get in a workout in one of the local YMCA’s. With a short amount of google searching, I stumbled upon numerous gyms in Kansas City, ending up at the Kirk Family YMCA in Downtown Kansas City. What initially was going to be a simple experience in the gym, actually turned into a great work out! This was in part to the high quality equipment, friendly Staff, and ease of getting in and out of the gym. The Kirk Family YMCA had numerous aspects that made it a great place to visit, with the following being the parts that I will be reviewing:
- Walking Track
- Cardio Machines
- Weight Room/Cross Training Area
- Showers/Locker Room
- Community Event
Kirk Family YMCA (Downtown) Review
Parking and Check in at the Kirk Family YMCA was incredibly seamless. Coming from out of town, I was slightly nervous trying to find parking, let alone free parking, to use while I was at the gym. The great part about the Kirk Family YMCA is that the gym itself actually has a dedicated parking lot for members right next to it. You simply go through the parking gate, get a ticket, and then “activate” the ticket indoors in a designated area that was very easy to find. The parking ticket gets you three full hours in the parking lot once you activate it in the gym. Once in the Kirk Family YMCA, I had to sign in. Since this YMCA was not my local branch I attend, I had to sign in at the front desk. The young lady assisting me was very friendly, and simply asked for my name, and main location I go to. I signed a waiver after that, and in five minutes I had full access to the gym!
Walking Track / Cardio Machines
I started out the workout with a light walk around their suspended walking track. The walking track was located on the top floor. The walking track itself had multiple lanes for you to use, based off of how fast you were walking or running. The only issue I had with the track is that it did seem very small. I was walking, so it wasn’t a huge deal. If I was running, however, I would not had much time to gain speed while moving around the corners. It was nice that there was a track though, as some YMCA’s don’t have one. After this, I checked out the cardio machine area. This area was outfitted with numerous treadmills, stair steppers, rowers, and bikes. The equipment was in outstanding condition, and spaced out well, so you don’t feel like you are breathing down the person right next to you.
Weight Room/Cross Training Area
The part of the gym that I use in any facility the most is the weight room area. The weight room area at the Kirk Family YMCA was outfitted with multiple machines in good condition, a few deadlift platforms with bumper plates, multiple benches and squat racks with varying levels of weight and dumbbells, and a heavily outfitted cross training area with kettlebells, stationary sleds, medicine balls, and a large amount of free space. I was incredibly impressed with how well they outfitted the gym, and felt like I could do my normal workout I would do back in my home time. The other part I liked about the weight area at the Kirk Family YMCA is that the area itself had a large amount of free space. It is annoying when you go to a gym and are staring at someone when you are doing an exercise, simply because the machines are too close to another. This isn’t the case here, with plenty of space to breath, move, and think.
One of the main reasons I was using the gym was actually to take a shower. The locker room (for men), was easy to find, clean, and offered multiple locker spaces that could be used during and after your workout. The shower room had four showers, that came with soap you can use to clean off. I brought my own towel, but I assume they probably did have extra towels you could use. Overall the shower was hot, and clean enough that I didn’t feel gross after taking a shower (you know the feeling.)
One of the neat thing I got to encounter while I was at the Kirk Family YMCA was a public “healthy kids” event, right outside of the gym. The event had multiple stations for kids to exercise, play, and learn about being healthy. The atmosphere was fun, and exciting, with kids enjoying movement while jamming out to some music. In addition to this, a large amount of (mostly) healthy food was available to the kids, and family members that attended the event. It is always great seeing communities embrace public health from the ground up. Starting with children is incredibly important, as it sets their health behaviors for the rest of their lives.
The Kirk Family YMCA was a pleasant surprise, offering me a great space to workout and take a break from the heavy car time. I would highly recommend the Kirk Family YMCA for anyone who lives in Kansas City, or is visiting from out of town. The gym itself has much more to offer, such as a pool and group classes, which I would check out on their website.
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