My Life & Yoga

A conversation with Tess Bickerstaff, owner of Norwich Yoga Central.

3 Min Read

“I got into yoga about eight or nine years ago, I had a stressful job at the time and my friends took me to a yoga class to chill me out… I remember the yoga teacher just floated in on a cloud. I looked at her and thought ‘I love this”.

When she attended her first yoga class in her mid-forties, Tess had no idea that less than a decade later she’d be teaching students at her own studio in the heart of Norwich. Having been so inspired by her experience in that first lesson it wasn’t long after that she decided to make a complete career change.

my life and yoga

“I’d put myself down as someone who would have these issues for life, but I can’t begin to tell you how much my body has changed.”
Tess Bickerstaff

“I didn’t realize the power of yoga at all!” says Tess. “I suffered a lot from anxiety and depression in my youth and I’d had two really bad motorcycle smashes. It damaged me physically, and I also had a lot of stuff going on mentally.”

“I’d put myself down as someone who would just have these issues for life, but I can’t begin to tell you how much my body has changed. All the aches and pains I’d had as a result of the accidents have pretty much gone and, mentally, I now have a far calmer and more accepting outlook on life.”

my life and yoga

A little over a year ago, Tess opened Norwich Yoga Central, a studio offering a variety of classes and treatments.

“I had such a change happen within my own body and mind that I decided I was going to do everything I could to bring it to the people of Norwich.”

“Norwich is my home; I’ve lived here since I was 11. I love it to bits, and I love yoga, so I decided I was going to put everything I’ve got behind it … it’s going really well so far; people love it and they’re really receptive to it. I’m hoping it will just get bigger so we can help more people realise that yoga is such a great tool to assist with modern living.”

my life and yoga

Tess, who also organises yoga retreats at a variety of locations throughout the year, describes the great sense of fulfillment she gets from seeing progression within her students:

“It’s an incredible privilege to see a student evolve over time. I could see a student change over months and months or it could just be that they come into a class, they come in stressed, they’ve had a bad day, and they walk out on a cloud. It’s a great feeling to know you’re the one who has facilitated that and it gives me a great sense of achievement in my classes when I see that happening with my students.”

my life and yoga

Top 5 tops for good health:

  • 1. Stay off social media (or at least don’t take it too seriously).
  • 2. Develop a sense of self.
  • 3. Learn to listen to yourself and others.
  • 4. Eat well.
  • 5. Do yoga!

To learn more about Tess and Norwich Yoga Central, visit:

Instagram: @norwichyogacentral