Ruth Janssen

Exe Movement  & The Hall

Certifications and Awards:

  • 1st Class degree in contemporary dance and choreography at the London School of Contemporary Dance

  • 20 years professional dance experience

  • 18 years teaching experience

  • Certified 200+yoga teacher from Centered Yoga with Paul Dallaghan

  • Certified Pre & Postnatal yoga teacher, including baby massage and yoga - Appleyoga & Katy Appleton

  • Advanced CPD in Modern Pregnancy Functional Exercise & Birth Preparation Programming - Burrell Education

  •  Advanced CPD in Modern Post Natal Assessment, Core Restore & Functional Exercise Programming

  • Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) with Yoga Alliance

  • Registered ContaKids teacher

  • 2017 Exeter Family Favourite Award: Shining Star Community Builder

  • Qualified Natal Hypnotherapy Instructor

  • Certified Massage Therapist with Exeter School of Bodywork

  • Level 3 Anatomy, Physiology & Pathology


My name is Ruth. I'm a dancer, yoga teacher, body worker and natural voice worker. I'm a Devon girl, lover of bicycles, music, camping and countryside,  and mum of two. 

My career has mostly been centred around dance. I danced professionally for 20 years, choreographing and teaching for major dance companies in the UK and internationally. Dance informed who I am and how I see and experience the world - I feel immense privilege to have worked with the body and with dancers, who - quite simply - are the most loving, open creatures there are. 

Since moving back to Exeter, work has become more open, driven by a passion for music, movement, family and community.
I found yoga 15 years ago while looking for a route out of the cycle of repetitive injuries that arrived with the intense physical demands and long hours of dance. I travelled to Mysore, London and Thailand to study further. It became Instrumental in my work, life, teaching, and seven years ago became pivotal in finding greater peace in a difficult pregnancy, birth and now in motherhood.

Largley due to incredible practitioners and friends - Kirsty Simson, Jovair Longo and Riccardo Meneghini, I fell in love with the practice of bodywork as a tool to liberate the body into movement. In 2019 I gained professional massage qualification to more deeply explore and practice bodywork.  It is a great privilege to be able to use this in a therapeutic capacity. The isolating experience of a pandemic has brought into close focus exactly how valuable and healing the right touch can be.

Natural Voice Singing
Harmony singing was something always reserved for the campfire, especially on long starry nights by Scottish Lochs with the very best of friends, and 'enhanced' with a bottle of Amaretto. One of those friends pointed me to Thula Mama, Helen Yeoman's singing group for Mothers - and I never felt so at home with strangers as I did in Helen's lounge. I brought the group to Exeter, where I have met and sung with so many incredible Women. Together we have sung to our bellies, babies and children, with Grannies, with friends, in crises, in joy and laughter and in grief. We sing to connect with our little ones, with mothers all over the world, with this moment and times gone by, and with ourselves. We sing because it feels great.
Through juggling life, work, pregnancy, birth, children and preparing for labour myself, I have found a love for and devotion to serving women going through this intense period of transition. Mums are the ones I come to for all things hilarious, supportive and comforting, and witnessing Mothers as they move and reestablish their worlds is utterly inspiring.
The Hall
Together with my brother and family, I have opened The Hall - a venue in which the community of Exeter can explore some of these practices, share their own, hire the space or take part in local events, conversations, celebrations and performances.


Karen Whitfield

  •  CYS Yoga Teacher and Yoga Practitioner Training Programme (500hrs): completed in 2016. 
    Course delivered by Paul Harvey at the Centre for Yoga Studies and accredited by the British Wheel of Yoga

  • British Wheel of Yoga (the National Governing Body for Yoga) accredited

  • Registration number BWY-0026910

  • Emergency First Aid at Work 29/07/2020

    I am working towards the following qualifications:​

  • CNHC Registered Yoga Therapist

  • EUFNY European Teacher Registration

  • Level 2 Mental Health First Aid

Hello, my name is Karen Whitfield. I have been practicing Yoga for around 20 years and completed a 500hr Practitioner Training Program with Paul Harvey in 2016. I am passionate about guiding and supporting people on a very personal Yoga journey: developing practices and routines according to individual goals and needs; practices that evolve intelligently and adapt to change. The Yoga that I both practice and teach was developed by Sri Krishnamacharya, considered the father of modern Yoga, and passed down to me by Paul Harvey based on his many years of study with Krishnamacharya's son TKV Desikachar. 

I am a Mum to two young boys, currently living and working in Exeter.I know first hand how impossible it can seem to make time for yourself in this busy world and how important personalised and holistic support can be. Taking a few minutes each day to create a space for your own needs amidst the chaos and bustle of life is no easy feat but has immense value.

Karen is Available for private lessons at her home studio.

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