From blogTO, the 2011 list of Toronto’s Best Yoga Studios, by Dayna Winter
Reprinted from blogTO
The best yoga studios in Toronto offer respite from the rat race and sanctuary from the smog. They are spaces designed to encourage meditation, share energy and banish toxins. Whether occupying a former tattoo parlour in Parkdale or the palatial penthouse of a Yonge Street heritage building, Toronto’s best meditative spots run the gamut from intimate to awe-inspiring.
This is a list sure to satisfy even the most resistant to the ancient Indian practice. Years ago, my very first yogic encounter left me squirming, unable to remain still (in body and mind) and skeptical of the spiritual elements. But yoga assumes many forms, and in a city as populous and diverse as Toronto, there’s a brand of the practice for everyone.
I eventually found peace with it through Bikram (a 90-minute series of specific poses practiced in a heated room) because of its empowering and sweat-producing effects. Not a fan of exercise in 40-degree environment? Maybe an active yoga-pilates fusion class is your thing. Or, perhaps, a gentle restorative class for healing and relaxation. Whatever the expectation, Toronto has a yoga class to meet it.
I am thankful that a centuries-old practice has evolved in so many ways to appeal to a wider audience. “Yoga” does loosely translate to “uniting” or “joining”, after all.
The Yoga Lounge (downtown Toronto)
The Yoga Lounge’s Church and Richmond space has been freshly renovated and bisected to allow for more flexibility in the schedule. Hatha runs simulataneously in the adjacent studio while I try out a noon-hour Yogalates class. Customer service is impressive here -owner Susan fusses with my bolster and blocks to set me up properly, while Max, the studio cat, pays students silent friendly visits during poses.