As human beings, we all have unique journeys that bring us to this present moment (literally as you read this blog post, right here, right now).  For those of us that have chosen a path to become lifelong students in order to teach, it is no different.  Many teachers that I meet are practitioners of one lineage of yoga (Integral Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, Hatha Yoga), but every now and then I meet teachers where many lineages speak to them as students. This has been my own personal experience as well because it is my true belief that our asana, or physical, yoga practice is a translation to allow us to interpret the unified principles behind what yoga really is.  

When I first met Marisa Atula, this shared experience is one that I felt really connected us. Beginning her journey as a teacher, Marisa completed her 200 hour certification through CorePower Yoga in 2013. In 2014 she ventured to India, earning her 300 hour certification at the Anand Prakash Ashram under the guidance of Yogrishi Vishvketu. She is also a Holistic Health Coach, certified through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.  

I personally am excited to learn from Marisa and practice with her. Learn more about Marisa below! 

What is your favorite style of class to teach and why? 

I enjoy teaching many different styles but restorative may be my favorite. Many people are moving so quickly and have so much going on, that stress can completely take over. I love being able to provide students the space and tools to fully release their tension. 

What made you want to go beyond just practicing yoga and start teaching? 

Quite simply, I wanted to deepen my knowledge and share with others the amazing tools that have been so beneficial to me.

If you had to describe your teaching style in 3 words or less, what would you say? 

grounding, nurturing, encouraging

What’s your favorite yoga pose? 

There are too many to choose! Currently I’ve been loving fish pose (matsyasana). At first glance it doesn’t look like much, but with the intense heart and throat opening, backbend, crown stimulation, and ab stretch it can be refreshingly intense. As a health coach and wellness nerd, it gets extra love for the fact that traditional text calls it the "destroyer of all diseases".

What do you like to do around Richmond? 

I just moved back to Richmond after 8 years away…so I’m enjoying rediscovering the city! So far I’m reminiscing in quality coffee shops, farmers markets, and moseys in the Fan. 

What’s your favorite food? 

too much to choose from! usually it’s organic, seasonal, and local

Tea or Coffee? 

non-dairy latte in the morning, herbal tea in the evening

Favorite quote? 

There are two: the cliche but profound “be the change you wish to see in the world” and the following from Christopher Poindexter: “tonight I lifted my hands & worshiped the moon for no reason other than it was there. some things are just that simple & they should never, never be made complicated."

Why are you excited to teach at Humble Haven Yoga? 

It was very obvious upon meeting the owner Suzanne and walking into the space that this studio has been built with intention. The vision of the studio is clear and honorable and Suzanne is genuine.  It’s name rings true...with the beautiful architecture of Shockoe Bottom and loads of pure light flooding in, the space is truly a haven. I believe it will provide a safe place for students to practice humbly, free of judgement. I am humbled to be able to teach in this space and look forward to connecting with all friends of Humble Haven!

What’s your favorite song to practice to? 

It’s impossible to pin down one song! Music, especially when practicing, can inspire so many different emotions. So my preference changes with the practice, season, and general mood. That said, lately these have been on repeat: Sky With Hand by Blue Sky Black Death, So Long Lonesome by Explosions In The Sky, and Devi Prayer by Craig Pruess and Ananda

When can you practice with Marisa? 

Sunday at 5:30pm, Restorative. 

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