the 'space' team

We're proud to bring a variety of teaching styles and yoga philosophies together at Kanuka Yoga!


Studio Manager

Raquel founded Kanuka to create a community yoga space for all types of bodies and selected an amazing group of teachers to help cultivate inner-awareness for a wide range of personalities.


Her classes are typically structured around a vinyasa flow with an emphasis on trauma-sensitivity and weaving in yogic philosophy. She invites you to tune into your own inner landscape and wisdom while exploring the physical ground/space around. She completed 200-hr RYT in 2019 at RAW Yoga and 60-hr Trauma-informed and Community Yoga with Rise Yoga in 2021.

Raquel has been practicing yoga for a decade. Her original movement training included figure skating, gymnastics, and co-ed cheerleading - she loves flying and finds yoga a more gentle way to find flow state. You can find her sharing acroyoga workshops at NZ-based festivals.


She recognises her consistent yoga practice as a tool to stay balanced internally and within relationships in work and in her personal life.

Meet Yoga Instructor and Studio Owner, Raquel


Studio Manager

Stu was introduced to yoga as a teenager, and has maintained a regular practice since 2014. He completed his 200HR RYT in 2019 at RAW Yoga on the North Shore.

He loves outdoor adventure sports like surfing, snowboarding and multi-day hikes and his classes reflect his calm demeanour whilst bring plenty of dynamic, energising physical movement to the class.


When it comes to a yoga practice, Stu is most passionate about being playful with balance, creating more mind-body awareness by using the breath, building physical confidence in challenging poses by taking one step at a time, keeping the core activated and finding regular moments of stillness and appreciation for the present moment. This is what he loves to share in his regular classes.

You'll also find him playing acoustic guitar and sharing sound bath journeys at workshops. He plans to bring more music and creativity to the space so keep a look out for upcoming events.

Meet Yoga Instructor & Studio Manager, Stu Larsen


Isabelle, or 'Za', is our gorgeous former midwife from France. Her training covers embodied flow, ecstatic dance and infant massage.


Za has a bubbly personality, soothing French accent, playful spirit and a few decades of experience under her belt.


We love every aspect of her energy, and we love that she puts in the extra effort by bringing a Buddha, candles and guardian angel cards to every class.

Meet Our Yoga Instructor, Isabelle


Laura is a great fit at Kanuka because she's been teaching in Hobsonville for a few years now and we're super lucky to retain her knowledge and calming energy in the community.

Laura studies yoga with Adele Kingham of Rise Movement to learn the philosophies of Embodied Flow & Yin.

Laura excels in creating a safe and nurturing space, and she's a star when it comes to cueing postures and providing options to suit all body types.

Meet Our Yoga Instructor, Laura


If you were lucky enough to practice with Kanuka Yoga when we first opened in late 2018, then you've probably already met Ella Richardson - Movement Mechanic.

Since her training (500HR Iyengar), Ella’s journey has led her to into a progressive path of biomechanics and functional movement. To support her curiosity about anatomy and the science of movement, she is currently completing her Personal Trainer Certification.

"I love being close to the wild west coast. Muriwai is my local surf spot, and you'll find me out there in any condition - rain or shine!"

Meet Our Yoga Instructor, Ella


Megan received her training and health/wellness education at Wellpark College. Her outdoorsy/adventurous vibe is a great fit for Kanuka.

Here's how Megan describes her practice:

"I love nature and I am constantly drawn to Being in this space (Kanuka). Yoga is the technology I use to stay connected throughout. I get a kick out of what the animal body can do and the power of my senses."


"I think Kanuka is such a welcoming and friendly, earthy, honest and giving space, and that's how I aim to teach and serve here."

Meet Our Yoga Instructor, Megan


Sam's personal journey with yoga started about 20 years ago with her experience of Sivinanda Yoga and it soon led to a love of many styles of yoga.

Sam completed her 200HR teacher training qualification with Ashram Yoga and she is currently on the path to completing her 300HR teaching training and couldn't be more excited!

Further training in the field of Yoga Nidra, Yin, Restorative and Kids Yoga have served to deepen her passion for yoga even more.

Meet Our Yoga Instructor, Sam


Carol completed her foundation teacher training with Shades of Yoga in Ubud, Bali (Yogi heaven) focusing on alignment-based vinyasa flow and sustainable safe practice. She has since completed several trainings focused on yin yoga with international teachers, Jo Phee and Yin Therapy

Carol draws inspiration from Insight Yoga, the principles of Chinese medicine, traditional meditation and breathing techniques, and creative vinyasa sequencing.

She's also very passionate about teaching pregnant students. ​

Meet Our Yoga Instructor, Carol


In 2012 Ellie moved to New Zealand from the UK and discovered her love for Pilates whilst working full time in the corporate world.

She is a certified Pilates teacher and teaches both mat and Reformer (Pilates equipment) classes. Ellie holds St Johns Level 2 First Aid Training, Advanced Reformer certificate, BOSU and Foam Roller and Pre and Post Natal Pregnancy Pilates.


With over 10 years of regular yoga practice Tanija has found so much appreciation for having a space to go to where she can find a sense of internal focus, a moment to slow down and re-connect to herself.


In Tanija’s classes you will enjoy a diverse flow and a strong connection to breath. She will encourage you to listen to the rhythm of your body and take options to find stability, ease and comfort within a pose. 

Meet Our Yoga Instructor, Tanija