For firefighter Tim Seutter, yoga is more than just a way to stay in top physical shape, it's also a tool to care for his mental wellbeing and deal with the traumatic events he often has to witness through his work as a first responder.
The 43-year-old not only teaches yoga classes in Whangarei, he also runs two studios in the city and has an online yoga teaching platform - all work he manages to fit in around his full-time job of fighting fires.
Seutter is this month's Dell Passion Project recipient. Dell and The Project are recognising passionate people who turn their side-hustles into full-time gigs, while maintaining a day job. He will receive a Dell XPS laptop.
Despite the extra work hours his yoga business demands, Seutter says he wouldn't have it any other way.
"Having a passion to explore is 100 percent what we need to do as humans," he says.
Originally from Canada, Seutter first arrived in New Zealand in 2011 on a one-year firefighter exchange. A decade later, he, his wife and their three children are still here, enjoying the lifestyle that comes with living on the Tutukaka Coast in Northland.
Seutter says he first got interested in yoga in his late 20s, when he realised that despite being in the best shape of his life he still constantly felt aches and pains in his body, something he thought "just doesn't seem right".
Although sceptical about yoga at first, he decided to attend a class when a friend suggested he give it a go and from there became hooked.
"I went and tried a hot yoga class and it kicked my butt pretty hard, and I was not expecting it to be hard at all," he says.
As his interest grew he started to incorporate yoga stretches into his daily fitness workout at the fire station, even convincing his colleagues - both in Canada and New Zealand - to give it a go too.
After a while, he realised he had a knack for teaching the discipline and decided to become a qualified teacher.
"Trying to explain yoga to firefighters is probably the best way to learn how to teach people in yoga because firefighters are pretty blokey, alpha-type people," he says.
After doing his teacher training in Bali in 2012, Seutter eventually opened up his first yoga studio in Whangarei in 2015, followed by another in July last year.
He credits having a supportive family, a great team of teachers, and "unbridled passion" for being able to fit in his yoga around his firefighting duties, which usually involve stints of working four days on followed by four days off.
"My wife and I have a delicate dance," he says.
"She works full time, I work full time and I run two studios...every week we kind of just take a breath and somehow it just all works out. I don't really have an answer as to how it works out but we make it work."
As well as keeping him strong, limber and in top physical shape, Seutter says yoga is also crucial to maintain his mental wellbeing.
"As you continue to practise you start to understand that there are deeper layers and the biggest one is the mental resilience through being present, meditating, doing breathing exercises - all these kinds of other facets of yoga that aren't always apparent when people first start going to yoga class."
Seutter says the importance of these elements was made crystal clear when he was forced to take a break from his work due to suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.
"I was off work for about nine months from the fire service and through that time I had to focus on mediation and yoga practice that would help me overcome all the issues and all the trauma - all the people dying and traumatic things, car accidents, all the stuff that first responders see every day," he says.
"And so yoga has really helped me understand that side of myself that I needed to deal with and all the traumas that I had experienced as a firefighter for almost 20 years now, and then finding ways to maintain that resilience moving forward."
In order to share his passion and knowledge with people unable to physically attend his classes, Seutter has also created an online platform - Yoga Fire TV - which has classes for everyone from cancer patients to athletes to those just starting their yoga journey.
It also includes a specific programme for first responders, which helps workers like Seutter "find a way to start yoga and then from there ways to add meditation and breathing exercises into your life to deal with issues that come up with potential exposure to traumatic events".
Despite the challenges having a side-hustle can bring, Seutter says he thinks it's important for people to find something outside their day jobs that "really hits your soul".
"For me that's yoga. I still don't know why it's yoga, but it is so I just keep doing it because I love it."
This article is brought to you by Dell.