In our latest interview, we conversed with Kimie Mittman, a yoga teacher who is truly committed to her community. As a 200 hour Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT 200) and registered children’s yoga teacher, Kimie also holds a B.A. in child development, family studies, early childhood and special education. In addition to teaching Hot Powerflow Vinyasa classes for adults at Powerflow Yoga in Clifton, NJ (where she is the studio manager), Kimie offers a yoga class to children with special needs, also at the Clifton location. We're thrilled to report that she will be offering a kids yoga camp beginning August 28th at Powerflow's new children's studio, Powerflow Yoga Kids, opening this fall in Bloomfield, NJ (stay tuned here for details!). We were so inspired by and impressed with this young woman, we needed to learn more. Read her story below. Find Kimie's teaching schedule and learn more about Powerflow Yoga here.
Lotus & Bug: Tell us a little about yourself.
Kimie Mittman: I am 26 years old, from Fort Lee, NJ and I am one of five children. I loved growing up in a big family and it has had a huge impact on who I am today. Growing up, I was always outgoing and active! I was constantly looking for inspiration and loved to be immersed in my community. I grew up playing three sports: soccer, basketball, and softball. I loved being a part of the team! When I went to college, I felt a void without the camaraderie of being on a team. I started to question who I was, what I wanted, and got swept away in the West Virginian party scene. For the first time in my life, I started to experience anxiety that was beginning to effect my daily life. This is what led me to my yoga mat. Once I started practicing, I never looked back. As my practice evolved, I began to experience clarity and a deep rooted connection to who I was and how I could be of service. Currently, I am the manager of Powerflow Yoga Clifton (PFY) and teach yoga to adults and children, including children with special needs. In September, PFY will be opening our first KIDS yoga studio! I am so excited to merge my passions of teaching yoga and working with children to help create an amazing outlet for them to: learn and express who they are, build physical and mental strength, flexibility, balance, coordination, confidence and learn valuable life lessons while connecting with others!
L & B: What helps you balance your career and personal life?
KM: My career and personal life are so interconnected, since yoga is my favorite hobby, but I still find time to disconnect from emails, text messages and planning to enjoy time with myself, my family and friends. I make sure to practice outside of my studio a few times a week to make it more of an activity than an extension of work. I also make time to do things that nourish me that are not work related. This often includes bike riding around town, hiking, spending countless hours hanging out at coffee shops, listening to live music, eating dark chocolate and connecting with friends and family.
L & B: Where do you find inspiration?
KM: Each morning, when I wake up, I have a morning ritual that always leaves me feeling inspired and ready to take on the day. I make my entire morning routine a meditation and I savor that time. I mindfully get ready for the day, prepare breakfast and lunch, set up my meditation space then sit. I always start my meditation by reading a passage and journaling. Reading literature and journaling has been a huge source of my inspiratation. I also find inspiration in my daily experiences through interactions with yoga teachers, friends, colleagues, family and strangers, being outdoors and going on adventures, attending music festivals, watching movies and seeing art. I believe that we can find inspiration in each moment, if we open our eyes!
L & B: What is your first childhood memory?
KM: I have a very vivid memory of being about two and going to my brother's baseball games. I would sit and intently watch his games with my dad with a pen and paper in hand. I would make marks on the paper whenever anything interesting would happen. It’s like I was documenting the game in my own little way!
L & B: Did you have a role model growing up?
KM: My dad is absolutely my role model. He is such a kind, funny, generous, charismatic and overall just well-liked man. He would do anything for his family and has always been such an incredible support system for me and my four siblings. My dad does not practice yoga asana, but everything we learn in the yoga practice, is how he naturally lives his life. He is an eternal optimist, despite having five children that would drive most sane people crazy! He lives his life to be of service to his family, friends, co-workers and community. He is 65 years old and still runs about 30 miles a week, works a full time sales job, where he travels often, and runs the softball league in our home town. He is just amazing!
L & B: What’s your favorite aspect about living in your community?
KM: My favorite thing about living in my community is my amazing yoga community! I am only abut a 10 minute bike ride to my yoga studio, where I have met and continue to meet, some of the most inspiring people on a daily basis.
L & B: Where is your favorite place to travel to?
KM: I love to travel to Colorado to visit my twin sister, hike, listen to amazing music and meet a lot of like-minded, down to earth people!
L & B: What is the one thing you’ve never done that you would like to do? KM: I have never gone skiing or snowboarding and would love to!
L & B: Just for fun - would you rather fly or read minds?
KM: I would rather fly! I love the feeling of being light in my yoga practice. Taking flight or cruising down a steep hill on my bike, I could only imagine how it would feel to glide across the sky and see things exactly as they are from above. I like getting to know people and hearing their stories, rather than reading their minds without the interaction!
L & B: What was the last gift you gave someone?
KM: For Mother's Day, I bought my mom "The Four Agreements" and my sister a vegan cookbook (because she eats mostly plant-based). I also baked my dad his favorite cookies that same day!
L & B: What’s your favorite item in your closet?
KM: My favorite item in my closet is this amazing scarf that a friend gave me that I use for my evening meditation!
Kimie's kids yoga camp for ages 5-8 begins August 28th at Powerflow Yoga Kids, located at 1283 Broad Street, Bloomfield, NJ.