Hello hello! I'm Marisa, a Critical Alignment Yoga instructor based in Hobart, Tasmania.
My mission is to help people do what they love with total freedom of movement.
Relaxed people are happy people. :)
Originally from the farm country of mid-Michigan, USA, I began travelling in 2005 and spent just a tad under a decade on the road between North and South America, Europe, and Asia. My first degrees were in history and Latin American studies, and my honours was about climbing tourism in Patagonia. I've been a barista, horse farm hand, server of fine dining, outdoor gear shop salesperson and manager, tree lopping assistant, NGO logistician, house painter, academic, HIV awareness and advocacy volunteer, child care worker, translator, and outdoor educator and adventure guide. I eventually settled in beautiful Tasmania, where I met my legendary husband, Ben, who is the best person there is. These days, I am a local government strategic planner and researcher by day and yoga instructor by night. I am a perpetual and obsessive learner. I think I am the the luckiest person in the world for living in this place amongst our much-loved community of friends.
They say that people create businesses for their younger selves. I didn't realise it at first, but that's definitely true for me. If yoga (or this particular kind of yoga) had been a part of my life in the early days, I reckon it would have worked wonders for my physical and mental health. When I say that this method is for workers, athletes, and philosophers, I do so with the knowledge that these are the parts of myself that could have really used it. And so I hope to pass it on to others who might feel the same.
This quest through life is such a beautiful thing indeed.
The yoga part
I first began practicing yoga in 2007, completing a Yoga Alliance RYT-200 at the Kashmir Shaivism School of Yoga in Dharamsala, India in 2014, focusing on Vinyasa Flow and Iyengar methods.
A chance meeting in a café in India introduced me to the Critical Alignment method. Critical Alignment’s unique way of drawing connections between anatomy, philosophy, and yoga practice piqued my interest straight away. I became dedicated to the practice upon discovering that it was helping to mitigate longstanding imbalances from doing outdoor sports like climbing and trail running. I travelled to Journey Within Studio in Malaysia in 2015 and 2016 to train to Level IV in Critical Alignment Yoga and Therapy with founder Gert van Leeuwen.
I started Yoga of the Isle in 2017 with the aim of sharing Critical Alignment with the athletes, workers, and yoga practitioners of Tasmania.
My classes use the Critical Alignment progression through relaxation, movement, coordination, and strength to help release the muscle tension that creates structural imbalances in the skeleton. They create a space for practitioners to reconnect with the body, focus the mind and rediscover the intimate link that human beings share with each other and the natural world. I have taught across ages and backgrounds, in studio, gym, and corporate environments, and in many glorious outdoor spaces around the world.
The rest of the time, you'll find me hanging around with friends, trail running in the Tassie bush, devouring a book, writing, drawing, or obsessing over some kind of project.