Healthy Living

Healthy Out of School Time

In 2011, Y-USA made a commitment to become the nation’s healthiest childcare provider and help end the childhood obesity epidemic.   By adopting and implementing Healthy Eating and Physical Activity (HEPA) standards, Ys across the country are committed to developing healthy habits in all the youth we serve.  The HEPA Standards can be viewed here

The SC Alliance of YMCAs has developed a partnership with the University of South Carolina and Policy to Practice in Youth Programs ( to further advance the HEPA work throughout the state.  Serving over 5000 children at over 100 afterschool programs each day, our Statewide HEPA Coordinator works closely with each YMCA Association to promote best practices to serve healthier foods and increase levels of physical activity.  In addition, Y’s have committed to prioritize staff training, evaluate policy changes, and complete weekly self-reports using HEPA Mobile (  Please contact Chuck Steinfurth for more information.

Community Integrated Health

Community integrated health is the effort to strengthen the linkages between traditional health care and community-based prevention strategies in order to help individuals prevent, delay, or live better with chronic conditions.

Community integrated health:

  • Increases access to care
  • Lowers costs
  • Prevents and addresses chronic disease
  • Reduces the effects of some social determinants of health

Community integrated health work is happening at local Ys as they work to improve the health and well-being of all through our suite of chronic disease prevention programs.

YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program

The YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program helps overweight adults at risk for type 2 diabetes reduce their risk for developing the disease by taking steps that will improve their overall health and well-being. The program provides a supportive environment where participants work together to achieve the program goals of reducing individual weight by 7% and building up to 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week for the purpose of reducing their risk for developing diabetes. The program is delivered over a 12-month period in a classroom setting. Click here to download the SC YMCAs currently offering this program.

Blood Pressure Self Monitoring

YUSAs Blood Pressure Self-Monitoring Program helps adults with hypertension lower and manage their blood pressure through the process of regulated home monitoring of one’s blood pressure and individualized support, physical activity and nutrition education to produce a well-balanced program. Evidence shows that regular physical activity and proper nutrition are both essential elements for effective blood pressure management.


LIVESTRONG at the YMCA, a small-group program developed and established in partnership with the LIVESTRONG Foundation, assists those who are living with, through, or beyond cancer to strengthen their spirit, mind and body.  Recent research from the Yale Cancer Center and Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Institute confirmed that LIVESTRONG at the YMCA participants experience improved fitness and quality of life as well as significant decreases in cancer-related fatigue.  This 12-week program (two 75-90-minute sessions per  week) includes cardiovascular conditioning, strength training, balance, and flexibility exercises.  Click here for more information and to find a program near you.


Enhance®Fitness, an evidence-based group exercise program for older adults that uses simple, easy-to-learn movements that motivate individuals (particularly those with arthritis) to stay active throughout their life.  Each class session includes cardiovascular, strength training, balance and flexibility exercises and fosters strong social relationships between participants.  Participants can use chairs for support, if necessary, and increase the weight they use for strength training at their own pace.  Click here for more information