Some of the biggest problems that people face when trying to commit to working out is becoming consistent and maintaining balance in their routine. Saultite Katrina Francella has learned this from experience, and wanted to create a community where women could get together in a safe and empowering space to improve their mental and physical health.
Known by her clients as ‘Koach Katrina,’ she has opened an inclusive, class-based facility for women called ‘The Klub.’
Superior Media had the opportunity to visit the group fitness studio, a colourful, modern, non-traditional gym. What makes Koach’s space so unique is the fact that it welcomes women of all ages, is kid-friendly, and LGBTQ2S+ inclusive. With space for little ones to play, nap, and be changed, it gives busy mothers and grandmothers the opportunity to get their exercise in, no matter what they have going on throughout the day. Of her business, Francella explained “I think a lot of people would definitely say it’s more than just a gym… The energy it gives off, and my personal story, and my energy seem to bring really awesome people here.”
The vibes of the Klub are undeniable. Walking into the brightly coloured studio with a window front view of Queen Street, the walls adorned with positive, motivational, and funny messages, the space eloquently decorated with comfortable seating and modern equipment, as Koach greets you with a glowing smile and sincere excitement, you can’t help but smile and feel at home.
But moving beyond the gym’s aesthetics, Francella’s personal story is very inspiring. She, like many others in our city and around the world, struggled with mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, and an eating disorder.”My grandfather’s passing hit me hard, it made me rethink the path I was on and so did my cousin’s passing. She died by suicide and the complications with her eating disorder and other mental health issues.” Francella was encouraged by these losses to be a better and healthier person for herself. She found motivation through the women and coaches that she worked with, and through their guidance, she started eating better, working out, and lost an astounding 100 pounds. Francella said, “The coaches that I had changed my life, so I wanted to do that for other people. I saw how simple acts of kindness could change someone’s life.”
Finding passion in physical activity and exercise, Francella completed her personal training certification as well as the Health and Fitness Promotion program at Sault College, where she furthered her skills, knowledge, and passion for healthy living. Of the Klub’s inception, Francella explained “Going into my second year (at Sault College) I decided it was time to go from training clients in my nana’s garage or basement, and now Koach Katrina – the Klub – is here.”
Since group fitness and sports were what empowered Francella and helped her achieve a healthier and more balanced lifestyle, she firmly believes in the power of group training. While she does offer personal training, she finds that most clients find support and strength from each other in a group setting. Groups can be as small as two people or as large as twelve, so she describes the classes as a very personal and customized experience for participants.
Francella’s entire mantra revolves around consistency, strength, and self-love. “We’re just normal women trying to love ourselves a little bit more… And talk about ourselves more positively.”
For that reason, her gym has no weight scales, and no pounds lost challenges. She told Superior Media “I want you to wear whatever you want, go without make up, go without shaving, come as you are.”
If you are interested in getting in touch with Koach, she is all ears and always happy to have a conversation about her classes (or Klasses). She can be visited at her website or on Facebook or Instagram, where class schedules can be found.
She also encourages you to pay her a visit at 642 Queen Street East in the Paul Mall to check out the Klub and see if it’s for you.