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Natural Awakenings Atlanta

Yoga Explodes In Atlanta!

Attendance at July’s Dirty South Yoga Fest jumped 50 percent over 2017, reports Jessica Murphy, the festival’s founder. Total attendance was about 750 this year as opposed to 500 last year.

Murphy’s fifth edition of Atlanta’s only homegrown yoga festival marked several firsts in 2018, including the first time that the festival stretched over two days and the first VIP option.

The vibe is what Murphy liked the most. “I was really pleased to see the people who came out, so enthusiastic, having really positive energy.” For example, she points to the event’s voter registration drive. Most attendees were already registered, but one signed up while in a food truck line and everyone around applauded.

The festival’s growth mirrors the changes that Murphy says she has seen over the last five years in Atlanta: many more studios and practitioners.

“With an abundance of yoga, a common reaction would be one of scarcity and competition,” she says, “but the Atlanta community feels like there’s enough for everyone. I see healthy relationships among the studios. We can all grow together.”

The festival’s most popular classes, as measured by the speed at which the classes filled up, were Acroyoga, Buti yoga, Budokon yoga and the two sound healing sessions. Murphy characterized Buti and Budokon as “trendy styles” and sensed that yogis saw them as “more for fun, less for practice.”

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