Tula is a Sanskrit word meaning balance and is often symbolized by the scales. Balance is created by an equal distribution of energy enabling one to remain upright and steady. Balance is the condition in which elements are synchronous and equalized. In yoga postures, we center ourselves, moving in steadiness to keep upright. As individuals, we seek harmony in our lives through a balance of physical, mental, and spiritual wellness. In our culture, this type of balance can seem unattainable, or at least, unsustainable, especially for the most vulnerable, underserved, and marginalized populations. As a society, we cannot achieve true balance until all needs, rights, opportunities, collective resources and supports are equitable in their accessibility. A peaceful and thriving society is a society in balance. A peaceful and thriving person is a person in Tula.
At Tula, we believe that the best way to achieve balance in our external world is through awakening to awareness within ourselves. Tula focuses on practices such as: yoga, mindfulness and both personal and professional development that invite individuals to discover their own sense of embodied balance and harmony. Tula teaches individuals, groups, and professionals mindfulness-based tools for transcending trauma. Tula was founded in 2018 as a yoga teacher training and retreats company and is now home to Tula Yoga Project, a 501c3 nonprofit organization that provides accessible classes and services to at-risk populations.
OUR MISSION IS TO EMPOWER INDIVIDUALS AND COMMUNITIES BY PROVIDING OPPORTUNITIES THAT SUPPORT HEALING AND BUILD RESILIENCY FOR A MORE EQUITABLE, PEACEFUL, AND BALANCED WORLD.
OUR VISION IS A WORLD WITH HEALTHY AND THRIVING COMMUNITIES SUSTAINED WITH ABUNDANT ACCESS TO PROGRAMS THAT SUPPORT INDIVIDUAL AND SOCIAL TRANSFORMATION.
WHO WE SERVE
Tula works with populations who are at risk for mental, emotional and physical challenges as a result of traumatic stress. We work with survivors, those in recovery, marginalized groups, and the various professionals who work with them.
Post Traumatic Stress
Early Childhood Trauma
Addiction + Recovery
Adult + Youth Incarceration
Complex Trauma + Vicarious Trauma
Military & First Responder Trauma
Disaster and Accident Related Trauma
Grief & Loss
FOUNDER & PRESIDENT
E-RYT 500, RCYT, YACEP, TIYT
Catie is the Founder of Tula and the Director of Tula Yoga Project. Catie began her yoga practice 20 years ago as a teenager, not yet aware of the many ways her practice would profoundly impact her life. In 2004, she became a resident of the Satchidananda Ashram in Virginia, serving at the Light Of Truth Universal Shrine (L.O.T.U.S.) and completing her 200 hour yoga teacher certification in 2005 with The Integral Yoga Institute. She holds a 500 hour advanced yoga teacher certificate, certifications in children's yoga and trauma informed yoga and is pursuing her yoga therapy credentials.
Catie's personal story has given her an intimate understanding of human suffering and how integrative practices that serve the body, mind, and spirit are instrumental in trauma resilience. Catie credits the teachings of yoga for helping her to heal her relationship with her body after recovering from an eating disorder and also heal her spiritual relationship with a Higher Power following the sudden death of her best friend at 16. Years later, Catie left an abusive marriage with her infant son and turned to her practice to reclaim her power and restore her mental, emotional and physical health. Catie's healing journey has also included reiki, energy healing, mindfulness based stress reduction, the guidance of spiritual coaches and support from her loved ones, all of which fueled her passion to give back by offering these services to others in their darkest times
In 2014, Catie opened Latitude Yoga Co., a studio in Stafford, Virginia where she established her first yoga teacher training school. After selling Latitude to it's current owner, she then moved on to form Tula while also serving as the Executive Director of Yoga Foundation of Fredericksburg (YOFO), a 501c3 nonprofit. The merging of YOFO with Tula birthed Tula Yoga Project (TYP) to provide trauma informed classes and programs that are accessible to our most vulnerable populations. Through TYP, she currently teaches weekly classes to survivors of sexual assault at The Rappahannock Council Against Sexual Assault (RCASA) and she teaches the children of The Gladys Oberle School, an alternative and special education school for children with mental health challenges and intellectual disabilities. Catie works with private clients at various locations including Conscious Healing, Inc. who are unable to or uninterested in attending public group yoga classes due to the risk of triggers and/or re-traumatization.
Much of Catie's professional time and focus is facilitating Yoga Teacher Trainings with Tula's School of Integrative Yoga. It brings her tremendous joy to pass down the teachings of yoga and prepare rising teachers to go out in the world as healing focused instructors that teach true to the sacred heart of the practice.
Catie is a bibliophile with enough books to last her three lifetimes and enjoys playing her baritone ukelele, paddleboarding, writing poetry, and spending time with her family. Catie's vision is for all people to have the necessary access to recovery resources so that they may reach their highest potential and contribute to a healthier world.
For inquiries about one-on-one and small group sessions, speaking engagements, mentorship, coaching, corporate stress management and collaboration contact Catie directly at 540.223.3627
INSTRUCTOR + BOARD MEMBER
Audrey is a long time yogi with over 20 years of devoted practice. She is a 200 Hour Certified Hatha Yoga Teacher and has been teaching for over 10 years. A true light worker, Audrey brings brightness and joy wherever she goes and loves to share her deep passion for yoga with students of all ages. Audrey has been teaching the children at The Rappahannock Juvenile Detention Center for the past 5 years and has also worked with the students at The Gladys Oberle School in Fredericksburg, VA, before relocating to Washington D.C. She also brings her infectiously joyous energy and inspiring teaching to classes for elderly populations living in residential care who are suffering from various challenges including memory loss. Her skill and charisma combined make for a truly special experience that encourages students to feel safe, welcomed ad comfortable.
Audrey serves as Treasurer on the Tula Yoga Project Board of Directors. Audrey also serves as a Faculty Member of Tula School of Integrative Yoga where she leads asana practice and dialogue on diversity and equity in yoga.
"Wherever you are, I meet you where you're at and I encourage moving with mindfulness and ease in a way that makes your practice an offering. I love assisting students in becoming stronger, relieving stress, preventing injury, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle." ~Audrey
Follow Audrey on Instagram @audreyblissyoga
INSTRUCTOR + BOARD MEMBER
Evelyn began practicing yoga in 2003 and fell in love with the Integral style of teaching as taught by Sri Swami Satchidananda. Evelyn later became a 200 Hour Certified Integral Yoga Teacher after realizing the progressively profound impact yoga had on her and her life. Initially she began practicing as a means to work on her balance, a challenge she has stemming from an inner ear illness. As she deepened her practice she gained more patience, compassion, and the ability to better regulate the stresses of daily life. Evelyn's intention is to offer a gentle approach that allows each student to find balance at their own pace, on and off the mat.
Evelyn is Yaqui, indigenous people to Northwest Mexico and what is now the Southwest United States. She serves as the Chair of Tula Yoga Project's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. Evelyn also serves as a Faculty Member of Tula's Yoga Teacher Trainings where she leads dialogue on social justice and teaches asana to rising yoga teachers.
A cause that is important to Evelyn is the work of nonprofit organization, Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women USA. MMIWUSA's mission is to bring missing indigenous women home and support the families of the missing and murdered through their grief process. MMIWUSA's broader goal is to eradicate violence against indigenous women through education and self defense programs. Visit mmwiusa.org for more information.
INSTRUCTOR + BOARD MEMBER
Sharon's yoga journey began at Latitude yoga Co. in 2015. Seeking tools for managing anxiety and a way to connect to her body as well as to new friends, Sharon quickly became a devout yogini before moving on to complete Latitude's 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training. Sharon has built her educational and teaching portfolio with a focus on working with the senior population and teaching adaptive chair yoga. She has been teaching seniors living in residential care for the past few years and is beloved for the gentle and warm energy that she brings to each of her classes. Sharon loves to read, travel, and spend time creating art.
Sharon serves on the Board of Directors for Tula Yoga Project as the Chair for the Yoga for Senior's Committee. Sharon assists in developing classes throughout the community at various residential centers for the elderly. Sharon is serves as a Faculty Member of Tula School of Integrative Yoga sharing her wealth of knowledge in chair and adaptive yoga.
"I recently heard chair yoga as “democratized” yoga and I love that description! The chair is used as a prop to bring the floor to you, when transitioning up and down from the floor isn’t available or preferred. Practicing yoga with a chair provides all the benefits of traditional yoga including building strength, increasing bone density and range of motion and regulation of the nervous system. A chair also provides security and stability during standing poses, improving balance and stamina for students of all ages.
"My goal is to empower each student to deepen their connection to and gratitude for their bodies and the role it plays in allowing them to navigate through the fullness of life's ups and downs. With each class it is my hope that all of my students feel more at home and comfortably confident in their body while discovering its wisdom, resilience, and healing power. Yoga has allowed me to access peace within and it is a joy to have the opportunity to share the many gifts that yoga has to offer!"
Before meeting Catie, I had never participated in any kind of yoga. As a stressed out career teacher, I needed to make a change in my life. My head was a cluttered mess of personal issues, combined with years of absorbing the daily drama of the teenagers I teach. My body was bearing the brunt of this anxiety. On a whim, I signed up for a two week trial with Catie. I've never been an athlete, and so thought I would go and laugh a lot at myself, and then probably give up because it was too hard to get into all the twisty positions. I considered it worth the $20, even if I just went once.
Well, I was only half right. I DID go once, and I DID laugh at myself --but no one else did, and no one minded when I giggled a little. Pretty soon, I settled down. This stuff wasn't impossible, and it felt good to move. Catie was the consummate teacher. She coached us, step by step, with her patient voice and encouraging words. I didn't have to look up to watch someone else - I could just trust her and (gasp) learn to trust myself.
Those two weeks changed my life. I was hooked; I signed up for a year of yoga. I had never spent that kind of money on myself before, but now I consider that investment to be priceless. I know good teaching - I have studied it, seen it, have degrees in it, and (hopefully) practice it every day. Catie is one of the best you will ever find, and I look forward to every class with her.
Catie tailors classes to the skills and needs of each participant. We have the choice to participate at a level that suits us best. In education, we call that "differentiation" - being sensitive to the abilities of your class, and able to provide She approaches each class with an open mind, a fresh outlook, and a joyful attitude. As a deeply spiritual person, Catie has listened to the Spirit speak, and creates a joyful and appropriate challenge for all.
What have I learned from this beautiful, kind, sensitive, funny, talented teacher? It is hard to put into words, but I will try. I have learned how to give back to myself so that I can give more fully to the children I teach. (She has added years to teaching career, and probably also to my life.) I have learned that my limits are in my mind more so than in my body, and if I trust myself, I can do more. I have gained a deeper faith, for I have been able to directly feel the power of the Spirit flowing through us all. Most importantly, I have learned to put down my worries, and not pick them up again.
Without yoga and this incredible teacher, there would still be a tangled mess in my mind - and 30 pounds of worry on my body. Through Catie's gifted leading, I have found peace, gentleness, strength, sweetness, and joy.
Thank you, Catie - for listening to the Spirit, and coming to the rescue. ~ Lara B.