Spirit Loft is a yoga and fitness studio in Leslieville run by former CFL football player, Andre Talbot and his life partner Catalina Moraga. Located on Carlaw, just south of Dundas West, Spirit Loft is housed in a space that truly lives up to its name. A real loft space with big windows letting in plenty of natural light, high ceilings, wide plank wood floors and exposed brick, it radiates positive energy. With a kitchen and single 3-piece bathroom, the unit, within a multi-purpose industrial building, could double as a living space.
You first enter a welcoming reception area, with the large studio space located through a doorway on your left. You should bring your own mat, but you can rent one for $1, and Spirit Loft has a generous amount of props for use during classes.
The Nooner Flow yoga class on a midday Monday (which costs only $10 to attend!) draws just 3 of us, including Andre himself, and is taught by Catalina. Small classes are a bonus to me, because I appreciate the additional attention each participant can receive from the teacher. While not everyone feels the same, I love getting adjustments to my postures during a class.
The class starts off slowly enough with some breathing and gentle stretches to wake up the spine, however, to say it quickly got more rigorous would be an understatement. Before long I was sweating as Catalina put us through a creative and challenging sequence with a definite emphasis on core strength. With the windows partially open on this warm spring day, I found the room to be a bit too stuffy for my liking, but admittedly I am unusually hot-blooded and I know most people prefer to practice yoga in a warm environment.
Catalina had soft, relaxing music playing, but truthfully, I was too focused on physical execution to really notice it. The 50 minute class went by quickly and had I not been sprinting to get back to my car before I got ticketed, I would have floated out of there in a blissfully relaxed state.
Aside from a wide range of yoga classes, Spirit Loft also offers kettleball classes and personal training. Most single classes start at $17.70, with deeper discounts for class packages. A single training session with Andre will cost you $75, or 4 sessions for $270, or 8 for $510.
Photos by Natta Summerky