Jenn Russell (The Travelling Yogi) runs inspirational yoga retreats and courses all over the world. Jenn originally hails from a dance and circus background having performed professionally for 12 years. Her yoga journey began as a way to rehabilitate the frequent injuries that are so common with professional dancers. In addition to achieving a stronger, more supple body, she quickly began to experience the profound effect that yoga has not just on the body but the mind… she fell in love with this ‘moving meditation’. Following the completion of an intensive teacher training at Himalaya Yoga Valley Goa in 2012, Jenn began regularly teaching vinyasa flow, ashtanga, power and hot yoga in her native Birmingham before taking a leap of faith in 2013 and quitting her job to travel the world and teach... she has been travelling and teaching full time ever since. Jenn has since completed her advanced 500hr TTC in Vinyasa Flow with Brahmani yoga and earned the title of 'Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher' having taught over 3000 yoga classes and 30 retreats in the past 5 years.
What do I do best?
My aim in life is to explore and create using the body as a vehicle for self awareness. I like to inject creativity and play into the yoga practice and spend lots of time on the mat exploring new ways of moving, drawing inspiration from my journey as a travelling yoga teacher. I am blessed to be able to work with amazing people all over the world and my style is constantly adapting and changing as I grow as a teacher and practitioner. My aim is to keep the practice fresh and fun and playful and to encourage students to be grateful for the incredible, capable bodies they are in.
What makes me the best version of myself?
Letting go of what I think is 'best' and 'right' and just allowing myself to be. We spend so much of our lives striving to be better that we forget to sit back and appreciate what we have. You are a living, breathing person and that is a miracle. The rest, the 'stuff', the yoga postures are just icing on an already awesome cake.
What are my aspirations?
First and foremost I aspire to be happy and to teach happiness. For me this means accepting everything life throws at us with grace and understanding that every moment is an opportunity for learning and growth. I am so grateful to have (what I see as) the best job in the world. I get to lead transformational yoga retreats all over the world and get so much personal satisfaction from being part of the amazing journey my students are on.
My Biggest Success?
Making the decision 5 years ago to quit my career in the UK and buy a one way ticket to Morocco to start my first international teaching gig. It took great deal of bravery to leave my house, my job, my friends and family but it's honestly the best decision I ever made. It paid off and I've been teaching and living internationally ever since with my company Soul Tribe Retreats.
My Most Challenging Moment?
In the beginning when I didn't have work lined up, I would turn up at studios and offer to teach trial classes to get a foot in the door. Arriving in a new country without a job was scary but I learned to trust in my abilities as a teacher. It taught me to let go of the need to plan everything and just go with it. Trust is such a big and necessary thing to cultivate.
You are perfect in your imperfection. You are enough, just as you are.
My Favorite People/Role Models?
I've just spent an amazing two months in Bali studying with some incredible yogis. I love the explorative style of Meghan Currie and Carlos Tao. They remind me of my teacher Julie Martin who inspired me to start working in a non-linear way, blending elements of yoga, dance, improvisation and intelligent alignment.
My Favorite Places/Destinations?
I live in Goa for 6 months of the year and absolutely love it there. In the summers I teach retreats all over the world including in Bali, Ibiza, Andalusia and Morocco. Next on my hit list is Central and South America
My Favorite Products/Objects?
As a yoga teacher it's pretty simple - my trusty yoga mat, foam roller, and lots of yoga pants and yoga bras. I'm also a sucker for mala beads and have just begun making my own
My Current Passions?
I'm always on the hunt for something creative and new. I just started to learn to play the guitar (very badly!) and started making mala beads. I also write yoga poetry and blog regularly