This is interview eight of my traveling yoga teacher series. Each month, I will post a new interview of a yoga teacher I meet along my travels.
If you know someone who you think would be a great fit to this series, send me an Email!
I would LOVE to hear from you!
This month’s interview features: Jenna Johnson, founder of:
What type of yoga do you teach?
I teach a slower Vinyasa yoga that focus’ on self-love and sending gratitude to not only ourselves, but also to the people in our lives.
Current favorite yoga pose or pose you’re working on?
I LOVE Wild Thing and Star Gazer! They both make me feel effortlessly beautiful. Which is ironic, because I dislike most backbends!
What travel tool do you recommend using?
My favorite Travel Tool is Girls Love Travel. It’s a Facebook Group full of 500,000 women from around the world!
What mat do you use while traveling?
For trips where I’ll be spending a lot of time on my mat, I always bring my normal-everyday yoga mat: The Unmat by Lululemon 5 mm.
During the trips where I won’t spend a ton of time on my mat, I bring the Ultralight Travel Yoga Mat by YOGO – Folding Mat With Integrated Straps and Handle for Carry and Wash. It’s an amazing travel yoga mat. It’s foldable and super grippy!
Pro Tip: When you practice at yoga studios with a travel mat, ask to borrow a mat from the studio. Then place your travel mat on top of the studio mat. That way you get more comfort but aren’t rolling around on a mat that other people have used!
Tell me more about traveling in a camper. What made you
decide you want to travel this way? What can you tell newbie camper travelers about this kind of life?
Honestly, I want a dog! My husband and I are both super nomadic right now. Currently, our lifestyle doesn’t allow us to take care of one. My hope was that if we had a camper, we could travel more around the U.S. and Canada with a dog!
I also fell in love with the idea of holding park yoga classes outside of my camper! I’ll be pursuing this dream Summer of 2018 after we get home from our 6-month honeymoon around the world! If you’d like to receive updates on my camper tour, sign up for my newsletter!
Newbie Camper Advice: It’s a lot more work than it looks! It’s a minihome. Things break, it’s not as intuitive as one would think, and things will go wrong. BUT owning a camper is incredibly rewarding and empowering. I have to constantly remind myself that no one is good at something the first time around. That as things go wrong- we’re learning a new skill!
I really connected to you via Instagram, because of your realness and honesty towards life. Can you tell me more about living honestly through social media?
Being open is really, really hard. It’s a new skill that has taken practice. When I first started sharing on Instagram, I wouldn’t share details about my life. I had fear of what would people think and how would it affect my friends / family. I still talk to my husband before I publish something super personal. Especially if it has to do with our relationship or our business. Overtime, the more that I’ve shared with everyone, the more I’ve realized I’m not alone. Every person has a story. They hold on to experiences and feelings that they aren’t sharing out-loud. By sharing my stories, it encourages others to be open and honest with themselves and those around them. It’s a humbling reminder that whatever we’re holding onto, we’re not alone.
What made you start a gratitude journal?
Gratitude was very intuitive for me. It began my last semester in University, I fell into my deepest pit of fear, anxiety, and depression that I have ever experienced. I was applying for Graduate School. I had zero idea of what I actually wanted to do with my life. And on top of the homework, exams, and two internships, I was commuting three hours a day to University. At one point, I knew that something had to change. I was ruining my relationship, everyone around me didn’t know how to react to my roller coaster of emotions, and I didn’t know how to deal. One night before bed, I grabbed my beautiful leather journal from Italy. While everything around me seemed so negative, I knew that I needed to create some good in my life. I began writing these short lists of anything that was good in my life. My morning coffee, cuddles with my boyfriend’s family’s dog, listening to a good podcast, etc. I kept a gratitude journal for years. Being grateful is a skill that you strengthen with practice and becomes effortless.
How do you find your jobs abroad?
Write this down: it’s about who you know! I have found almost all of my yoga jobs through the people that I know in the yoga community. I’ve found work through friends that I’ve met in yoga teacher training, friends from past internships, and my yoga students. Make friends every time you attend a workshop, go on a yoga retreat, or find yourself at a yoga event. If you’re thinking that you don’t have enough money to go to these yoga events- that’s okay! You can make yoga friends on Instagram, in Facebook Groups, etc. The possibilities are endless!
What is the day in the life of a traveling yogi like?
I spend a ton of time trying out various things and learning. I start out my morning with a gigantic cup of Bulletproof Coffee. When I’m not working with my husband on our Amazon business (Disclaimer: Amazon is where we make all our money. It is what currently allows me to travel as much as I do), I spend my days optimizing my website, creating online content, learning about branding and marketing, and connecting with other yogis over social media. If you want to connect, find me at:
What meditation or mantra are you currently living by?
“If I cannot, then I must. Everything I have is within me.”
Where is your favorite place you have traveled to?
My two favorite countries are both super popular and for good reason! They are Iceland and Italy. Iceland is another world. It’s nature is stunning! I’ve been in Winter and I’m dying to go back during the Summer! I love Italy for it’s food, culture, and stunning scenery. If you go, make sure you check out cities other than the ones that are popular. Hike in the Dolomites, visit the beach town Porto Santo Stefano, and eat all of the gluten-free pasta and pizza for me!
What is something to be aware of as a traveler?
People will try to scare you from traveling. Don’t listen to them. Be prepared, do your research, and always follow your intuition.
What should a first time traveling yogi know about the
professional yoga life?
Being in the yoga industry is not only exciting and rewarding, but it’s also frustrating. For some reason, yoga teachers get taken advantage of. Be smart with who you make agreements with. If you can, get contacts written and signed. Be assertive and stick to your worth. Find a teacher who is more experienced than you to be your coach. Let them help you navigate this new lifestyle.
What does your dream yoga position or career look like?
Right now, my husband and I dream of owning a conscious retreat center in the mountains. We dream of a sanctuary where people can get-away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. We want to give people the tools to explore themselves. We’ll have float tanks, yoga, meditation, Kryotherapy chambers, meditation classes, and hikes. All these tools will help people connect with their past, current life, and dreams of the future. Our goal is to help people recognize that they can take control of in their lives and create the life of their dreams. Per my husband, we’ll also have llamas and goats because why not?
Connect with Jenna Johnson
Jenna, originally from Green Bay, Wisconsin is a nature-lover that is obsessed with yoga, travel, and her vintage camper. She has been teaching and traveling collectively for five years and inspires exploration through travel and yoga. Jenna is the writer and creator of The Exploring Yogini. It’s the space for travel hacks, adventure planning, and yoga inspiration! To learn more about traveling and teaching with Jenna, check out her blog post: How To Teach Yoga Abroad.