In Yoga we often hear the word “journey” used to define the ongoing experience of physical and mental growth and personal evolution. However, particularly at the outset, it is easy to underestimate the impact it can have on our lives. We talked to The Yoga Wellness Company founder, Jennifer Ellis and found out her experiences and the phenomenal change it has had an all aspects of her life.
After professionally training in contemporary dance in South Africa, Jennifer moved to London twenty-five years ago seeking a new adventure; Jennifer quickly adapted to London’s way of life and grew a successful career in a corporate environment. Despite having established a stable career in recruitment for seventeen years, she felt compelled to seek out a more balanced lifestyle that allowed her to remain working within the city she loved but simultaneously allowed her to break generic London work-life and push her potential as an individual.
What made you start Yoga?
Jennifer: Owing to my background in dance, I was naturally drawn to the physical aspects of Yoga and after beginning regular practice I soon noticed the positive effects it was having on my body. More significantly however, I was captivated by the incredible impact it had on my mind-set. Being under pressure to consistently perform is a normal part of working in a corporate environment but sometimes its easy to ignore just how much stress you’re putting yourself under. Yoga gave me an opportunity to acknowledge how I was feeling, to pause and to clear my mind of the constant chatter and clutter. It gave me a deeper appreciation for both myself and the world around me and made me more aware of pursuing a greater level of health and wellbeing.
When did you decide to make Yoga your career rather than a hobby?
Jennifer: I never saw Yoga as a ‘hobby’. The benefits extended to so many aspects of my life that from the outset I saw it as a way of life as opposed to a weekly exercise session or likewise.
For me, Yoga fulfilled personal needs on a physical and mental level and changed my entire perspective which subsequently began to alter my behaviour and the decisions I made. My eventual decision to pursue it as a career came from a desire to break from the rigid conformities of a corporate lifestyle – with structured and repetitive days – and to seek a more fulfilling means of personal achievement and development.
How have you found the change-over?
Jennifer: Scaling down my corporate commitments and loosening the usual work-week structure it provided me for so long was unsettling; It is part of our biological makeup to build up habits (whether healthy or unhealthy) and breaking those habits can be very difficult. Nonetheless, I am fuelled by my ongoing passion and commitment to Yoga and personal wellbeing and this constantly reminds me that I have made the right decision and excites me to push myself to greater achievements.
What have you learnt?
Jennifer: What I’ve learnt in my journey thus far, is that, patience, perseverance, and tenacity are the pragmatic components to success in a career in Yoga while the work itself has further taught me to trust in the process of Yoga, learning to adept well to change and this has subsequently helped me to develop inner strength and a more open-minded outlook to life and work.
The experience is, as my teachers have said on many occasions, an ever more finely tuned alchemy, turning lead into gold and this is what makes the practice so applicable to people in all stages and walks of life. Yoga can be as much or as little as you make it; it is a journey that never tires and consistently opens new paths.
Jennifer teaches Yoga & Wellbeing workshops and retreats for The Yoga Wellness Company. She regards yoga as accessible to everyone, regardless of their physical ability and age, and encourages everyone to work at their own pace. Jennifer teaches with an open mind and in a neutral and natural way, which enables students to enjoy a change in lifestyle through their yoga practice.
For more information and to book upcoming workshops with Jennifer visit