In my humble opinion, it’s never to late for New Year’s resolutions. Besides, I’ve always thought spring feels like more of a rebirth than any other time of year. And what better way to revive your body and mind after a long cold winter than with a refreshing and invigorating yoga practice at one of Kingston’s myriad studios? This town is a veritable oasis of calm for yogis and yoginis–there are numerous local studios and schools providing a wide range of yoga styles.
My personal favourite is Samatva, at 397 Princess Street (they also have a West End location at 1724 Bath Road). Their downtown location has both hot and room temperature studios, and offers over thirty classes a week, with something for everyone. I’m a huge fan of their hot classes, and I have yet to practice with a teacher I don’t love. Samatva is a small space, so be prepared to get cozy with your fellow students. There are no showers (although the washrooms are lovely and always have plenty of cloth hand towels and yummy natural soap for your enjoyment), so it’s best to plan on sneaking home between your hot class and your next engagement. Samatva also offers a wide range of body work, from Thai yoga massage (heavenly!) to a sauna space. Studio owner Jaime Wood recently returned from a trip to Haiti and continues to raise funds for aid work in Port Au Prince. She also leads occasional 30- and 40-Day Challenges, where participants practice yoga daily and work to integrate yoga into their lives in a more meaningful way. I have yet to do a challenge myself, but am hoping to step it up this April. Check their website for more details.
Studio 330, at 330 Princess, prides itself on being a community-driven yoga space. Their class offerings are more traditional than Samatva’s, and again, the teachers are all stellar. I recommend the Gentle Yoga classes for a truly relaxing experience. 330 also has a great commitment to local and global activism, and participates in the Off The Mat, Into the World challenge, a growing global movement to use yoga to inspire change and action through good works and charity. Check their website for information on upcoming challenge events, including an Earth Hour candlelight class on March 27th.
Feel Yoga, at 80 Princess, is Kingston’s hot spot for Bikrams yoga, the original hot yoga practice. Bikrams classes are vigorous and hot, and will leave you feeling like your body has been wrung out like a washcloth–it’s an amazing feeling, trust me. Feel also offers more traditional classes and often hosts meditation and chant workshops, as well as other events.
There are numerous other studios I haven’t had time to visit yet: I hear great things about Path Yoga at 336 Barrie and would love to check out one of their Ashtanga classes. The Lululemon store on Princess hosts workshops and classes to deepen your yoga practice, and their Facebook page is a great spot to visit for updates on the latest events. The YMCA also offers yoga classes among their many fitness programs. I’d love to hear about any of your favourite yoga haunts around town!
Thanks a credit to timsamoff for today’s photo.