Yogathletix is a newly-opened fitness studio on Queen Street, in Leslieville. The studio bills itself as "an intimate, non-intimidating yoga and fitness studio offering various forms of yoga and barefoot group exercise programs, including "BarreFit" workouts." What's meant to differentiate Yogathletix from other studios is their goal of balancing the athletic and spiritual aspects of yoga, with other mind/body practices.
Their signature class is described as a blend of "hatha yoga poses, vinyasa flows, Pilates techniques and upper body and core strengthening exercises." This fusion-based approach is meant to attain many of the same benefits of yoga (toning, flexibility, strength-building) through a less "yogacentric" type of practice.
Fancying myself an athlete (in the sport of life), and a yogi (of the bear kind), I was eager to try this class. Arriving for the lunch hour Yogathletix session on a frosty Friday, I was immediately impressed with the space. Located on the second floor of a commercial building, the studio has hardwood floors, exposed brick walls, and soaring windows and skylights which provide an abundance of natural light.
The common space features the work of local artists and the wood furniture and benches provide sculptural elements to the room. There's a large studio for classes, plus separate changing areas for men and women.
There are also two private, unisex washrooms, but no showers. Although you are responsible for your own yoga mat, they have ample numbers of blocks, straps, and bolsters for use during classes.
Given the intensity level of the class, I was surprised that our teacher, Vikram, did not inquire about anyone's experience level or physical limitations before beginning. While it was a solid class - bonus points for including the pigeon pose - I can't say there was anything that distinguished it from any other power yoga/flow-type class I've previously done. There was no more focus on upper body or core strengthening beyond what you would normally find in this type of yoga class.
I was one of a dozen women attending, most of whom appeared to be under the age of 30. While the room was full of Lululemon garb and perfect pedicures, the attitude you sometimes find at yoga studios was thankfully absent.
Yogathletix offers a number or other 'barefoot' classes including GETnZEN, GETnFIT and Barre FIT, all of which provide varying proportions of stretch, strength, and sculpting work. This studio does not provide you with fancy equipment and calorie burning opportunities; however, if you are looking to increase flexibility, improve your posture, or simply unwind with some mind/body therapy, than Yogathletix provides a gorgeous space to do so.
They are currently running a Grand Opening special which will score you 30 days of unlimited classes for $40. Normally a single drop-in class will run you about $18, while discounts are offered for purchasing packages of classes or 1-month passes.
Photos by Jesse Milns