Archive for the ‘Helpful Hints’ Category
Posted by terrepruitt on May 23, 2013
A friend of my communicated with me that the company she worked for was going to be volunteering at RAFT. She asked me if I wanted to join them. I didn’t know what RAFT was. So I looked it up online and I saw what it stood for so I said yes. RAFT is Resource Area For Teaching. I showed up not knowing what they really did. I didn’t look at the website beyond the meaning of the acronym. After listening to the short orientation about what RAFT is I was very impressed. I was excited to learn that there is this type resource available to teachers. I know many teachers work way more than the school day hours and put a lot of their own money into supplies. I thought that RAFT might be something to help them out. RAFT is as a non-profit organization that supplies teachers with Idea Sheets, materials and other resources. RAFT also holds workshop for Educators.
RAFT understands that the hands on approach is a very powerful way to learn. Their mission is to “inspire the joy and discovery of learning” through hands on learning. The website has hundreds of “Idea Sheets” that teachers can print at no charge. These sheets are guides on lessons that correlate to the subjects and things that need to be taught in California. But anyone teaching kids can use them because they are on a variety of subjects. The sheets can be searched by subject or grade/level. The sheets state the materials needed, how to assemble the learning tool, the grade it corresponds to as well as the California Standard, the science behind it and alternative lessons that can be taught. Some of the idea sheets also have actual kits you can purchase through RAFT. But you can always obtain the materials yourself. Some things needed could be stuff you have around your house.
RAFT receives surplus “stuff” from businesses and they create learning tools from these spare parts. These are the Activity Kits that can be purchased. It is really cool because RAFT takes stuff that businesses more than likely would just be throwing away and they create a learning project from it. I thought that was so cool. RAFT is recycling by using things in a different way than was originally intended. When I was there we were using a CD/DVD Spindle, a CD/DVD, a CD/DVD case to create kits. We kept saying as we were assembling the kits that we would have to see what it was that we were putting together, but then we never did. And I was at the front of the assembly line so I don’t even know what else was in it except I saw sticks, straws, and string. I looked online and I don’t see the kit available yet so I can’t try to figure it out from the website.
In addition to the Idea Sheets, Activity Kits, workshops, and mentoring RAFT also has common classroom supplies available to teachers as a discount. So overall RAFT sounds like a great resource for teachers. I love that RAFT uses stuff that would just end up in the garbage. That the materials they are keeping out of the landfills actually go to making a project for children to learn from is just super delicious icing on the cake! Then having all of this help teachers. I was just so excited and impressed I had to share. I didn’t know this place, this type of thing existed. I am really glad I agreed to volunteer even though I had no idea what it was about.
If you teach kids I hope that you will take a moment to look at this GREAT resource that is available to you.
Did you know about RAFT? Have you ever used one of their Idea Sheets?
Posted in Helpful Hints, Misc | Tagged: Activity Kits, California Education Standards, classroom supplies, hands on learning, Idea Sheets, lesson plans, RAFT, teacher mentoring, teacher resource | 2 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on August 16, 2012
Recently 30 seconds into the second song in my Nia Class, one of my students stopped dancing and started to limp away. I asked her what was up and she replied that she got a bee sting on her foot. I asked if it just happened now (during the class) because she had appeared to be moving fine during the first song — but then again, the first song in the Nia routine we were doing is basically whole foot stances. She had said it had happened over the weekend. She said that she was hoping she could dance, but the sting got too aggravated. After class one of my other students inquired as to why the student left. She had not heard the exchange between me and bee-stung person. I told her that her fellow student had been stung by a bee over the weekend but had hoped to be able to dance but could not. The inquiring student said, “Oh I wish I would have heard because she might want to try meat tenderizer.” Huh? So that started a whole conversation about her having been told to use meat tenderizer on a bee sting.
My student related the story where she and her son had been walking down the street in Palo Alto (a city in near San Fransisco) and she had been stung by a bee. She said since it happened right there on the street others had observed the incident. She said one woman offered the suggestion of putting meat tenderizertenderizer on the sting. She said the woman was a nurse. I asked my student if the meat tenderizer worked. She said it did, she said she didn’t know why, but it did.
Times like that is when I truly LOVE wireless devices that can instantly connect me to the answers to “Why?/How?” I had to look it up. WHY would MEAT TENDERIZER work on a bee sting?
The first site that came up stated that bee stings are acidic and the meat tenderizer is alkaline so it works to counteract the acidity of the sting. At the time that is all that I read. Good enough for me. Just a quick answer as to why. In researching it for this post it appears that this treatment of the symptoms of a sting is an old home remedy.
The information on the internet states to mix the meat tenderizer with water to form a paste, apply it to the stung area so that it covers the entire area, and leave it on for 10 to 20 minutes. Then wash it off and apply ice.
Some information stated that mixing the meat tenderizer with vinegar is another option.
Several sites state it is the papain in the meat tenderizer. Papain is a natural enzyme that works to break down the protein in the venom. It is suggested that a meat tenderizer without this enzyme would not work.
Some sites indicated that this remedy used to relieve the symptoms of a bee sting will work for other stings (wasp, jelly fish) and bites as well. Of course — as stated this remedy would just relieve minor symptoms of a sting. If there is a chance of an allergic reaction medical attention should be obtained.
Also . . . more stuff I learned while researching the meat tenderizer for a bee sting is that the stinger should not be removed with tweezers. I saw many instructions stating to SCRAP it out. The suggestion is to use a credit card or a metal blade. The idea is that pulling the stinger out might just cause MORE venom to be pushed into the victim and the scraping will get it all out. I would have just pulled it out with my finger nails or tweezers.
I found all of this very interesting. I know many people who have been stung by bees and they might know this information. I know many people who have not been stung by bees and they might want to know this information. I don’t actually have meat tenderizer in my pantry. I am not one that cooks meat without it having been marinated and I believe the marinades work to tenderize the meat. But if you do happen to get stung by a bee and have meat tenderizer in your pantry maybe you would like to give it a try.
Have you ever been stung by a bee? What did you do? If you get stung might you try meat tenderizer on the sting?
Posted in Helpful Hints, Misc | Tagged: acidic, alkaline, bee sting, bee sting symptoms, meat tenderizer, Nia class, Nia routing, Nia Song, San Francisco Bay Area, San Francisco Bay Area Nia, stances | Leave a Comment »
Posted by terrepruitt on July 17, 2012
Because I teach Nia I am not used to wearing shoes when I workout. Nia is a workout done in bare feet, so I don’t wear socks and shoes. Yoga, Pilates, even resistance training can be done without shoes. Recently I was in a training that required me to wear shoes. And it was an all day training, eight hours. Since my feet do not really like shoes AND my tennis shoes are kind of old, I decided to wear some additional cushion in my shoes to help my feet. My right foot is very sensitive because the middle toes no longer straighten fully so the middle of my foot does not lie flat on the ground. The ball of my right foot and the pinky edge get sore. They get more work than they should. So I decided to employ a method that I used when I was young, in addition to the extra cushion I had added relief later.
Maybe this method can help some females that wear those REALLY high-heeled shoes that are so popular now-a-days. When I was younger the style was to wear pumps. I have a wide foot and pumps were not always comfortable. What I would do was, I would put a gym sock on my foot but I would roll the sock down to around the ball of my foot, then I would shove my foot – with the sock on – into my shoe. Then I would get ready. And back then I was one of those girls who took a ridiculous amount of time to get ready. So I would end up wearing the gym sock-shoe combination for at least an hour and a half. This accomplished two things: 1) It somewhat stretched out my shoe and 2) (after walking around and standing while getting ready to go out with my foot squeezed into the shoe) ANYTHING felt better than that!
One time I was getting ready and I was walking around the house and after passing my dad three or four times he finally said, “You’re not going out like THAT right?”. And I laughed and I had to explain it to him. No rolled gym socks were not part of the outfit.
So while I did not wear rolled up gym socks in the training I wore these foot huggers that have a little gel in them. So I had extra cushion and I had something that felt nice when half way through the day I slipped them off. While they were not hurting me as my gym-sock-wrapped feet did they did feel more roomy and happy after I took them off.
I think this method could possibly be applied to many things. When you have to wear shoes all day if you wear something to help cushion your foot, but might take up a bit of room in your shoe, it will feel nice when you take the cushion off in the middle of the day. At least that is what happened to me, plus it helped when I was young and smooshing my feet into pumps.
You know everything is just easier to handle when your feet are comfortable. That is why they make those “gellin’” insoles. That is also why I don’t wear uncomfortable shoes any longer. I don’t think it looks nice when a female has on a pretty shoe, but you can tell she is in pain with every step she takes. I would rather walk with comfort. So sometimes using the stretch-y method might help. The “No Pain, No Gain” is just a play on that famous saying . . . although when I was young I did it just while I was getting ready, I did not do it recently. My feet were comfortable all day. It was just that halfway through when they were a little sweaty and tired, I took off the huggers, changed my socks and gave them more room. Ahhhh. I was very happy that I had thought to do that. It worked out very well for me.
Do you have shoes that you wear that you might benefit from if applying this method? C’mon we all have at one time in our lives.
Posted in Helpful Hints, Misc | Tagged: high heeled shoes, Nia, Nia training, Nia workout, No pain no gain, Pilates, pumps, resistance training, rolled gym socks, tennis shoes, training, Yoga | Leave a Comment »
Posted by terrepruitt on July 10, 2012
I wrote a post about a four-point turn, that is what I call one of the turns we do while we are doing Nia. In Nia it is sometimes called an Aikido turn. But it is a turn that is done in many dance exercise classes, including Zumba. I realize that even if you are reading the post while trying to do it, it could be a bit confusing so . . . . . voila! A video.
The first clip is of me facing away and I start with a RIGHT turn, then alternate. Then the second clip is of me facing the camera.
As with my Aikido turn post maybe right and left indications will work better for you. In my other post I decribed the left turn, so here I will write out the right turn. And as stated, the right turn is the first turn I demonstrate. Turn your head/eyes to the right, allow your hand/arm to follow. Move your right foot to “toes out” turning your right thigh bone to the right. Then step on your RIGHT FOOT in a “toes out” position, put your weight on it 100%. As you are stepping all your weight on your RIGHT FOOT, allow your body to turn to the right, in the direction you want to go. Swing your LEFT LEG (free leg) around to what seems like in front of your RIGHT FOOT. Step onto your LEFT FOOT, toes pointing to the back of the room (or what started off as the back of the room), take the weight off the RIGHT FOOT (“toes out” foot). Swing your RIGHT FOOT (free leg) behind to land about in line with the heel of your LEFT FOOT (weighted foot). You will land standing on the RIGHT FOOT, and turn the LEFT FOOT to be parallel with the right foot. . . making that the fourth point or step.
Even though in the first clip on the right turn you can’t see my right foot “toes out”, I do the turn enough times in the video for you to see how the first step is a “toes out” move. Starting the turn with the “toes out” and already turning the direction you want to go will go a long way in enabling you to get all the way around. Even if it takes a lot of practice to get all the way around, starting that first step with the leg in outward rotation will help a lot. I also said in my last post that I think it is easier to do this move fast as opposed to slow. So it might be a good idea to not try it really slow at first because it is not easy slow. Just go. Right toes out, left, right, left. Or left toes out, right left right. Remember we do not spin on our feet. We need to pick the feet up off the ground to avoid blisters and strengthen the leg. Also you might notice that this turn is done on the balls of the feet. You put all your weight on the ball of the foot.
While my fourth “point” or step I am exaggerating and pointing my toe in that might not always be the case. When we are moving to the music the fourth “point” could end up being any number of things depending upon many number of things. The choreography sometimes calls for different things. Plus there is the individual body that is doing it to consider. Sometimes people can’t get all the way around, it could be that the music is really moving and there isn’t enough time to get around and settle into that fourth step or it could be that this is one of those moves that will take practice.
It’s a great move that allows us to use ALL five Nia Sensations. Flexibility on the “toes out” and as we place our feet, mobility in our joints, strength to get us around and stop, agility to stop, and stability to stay stopped. Cool, huh?
So how are you doing with your turn?
Posted in Helpful Hints, Nia | Tagged: Aikido, Aikido turn, dance choreography, dance class, dance exercise, dance exercise classes, demonstration video, exercise class, how to instructions, Nia, Nia choreography, Nia's Five Sensations, Toes Out, video clip, Youtube video, Zumba | Leave a Comment »
Posted by terrepruitt on June 28, 2012
I am not a marketing expert or guru or anything, I am just a Nia teacher trying to get the word out about Nia to as many people as possible. As I go I realize that my past experiences have helped me learn a lot. Plus I learn a lot as I go. I have a lot of people who encourage me, and help me learn even more. Here are a few things that I have learned that maybe you don’t know. Or maybe you forgot, or maybe, like me, you need encouragement to do/use.
1–When posting a flyer or a poster make certain there is contact information on it. Make certain the information stands out – whether it be a phone number, an e-mail address, or some other way to communicate.
Recently I received a call from someone wanting to take a different class (not Nia), but she claimed there was no phone number for the instructor she wanted to take a class from. I took her name and number, looked up the instructor on the internet, called the instructor and gave her the prospective student’s name and number. When I was able to look at the poster myself I saw the phone number on it, but it was somewhat camouflaged. It blended in with the other text on the flyer. Make your contact information stand out. Make it bold, make it a different color, make it a different font, make it larger than the rest, or circle it. Something that makes it the first thing people see. Flash a sample at a friend and see if the contact info is the first thing they see.
I am hesitant to send out e-mails because I don’t like to “bother” people. I don’t like to clog their in box with a lot of stuff. I know we all get a lot of e-mails and I don’t want mine to be the one you don’t read because there is an e-mail from me all the time. I try to keep my e-mail down to “need-to-know” stuff. I work to only e-mail once a month. With this past e-mail I sent out a handful of my students thanked me for the updates. That made me feel better. People appreciate being updated.
3–Use the subject line (when e-mailing) to get the info across.
When a fellow Nia teacher told me she sends e-mails reminding people to come to class, I shared I didn’t like sending out too many e-mails. She gave me a great tip. She said to put the information in the subject line. If it is just a quick reminder of one thing then the subject line can hold all the info and the recipient doesn’t even have to open the e-mail. “See you at class tomorrow.” I thought that was brilliant. I have employed that method and I love it. Otherwise, I use my subject line to announce all the items contained in the e-mail. As an example my last e-mail subject line was: “Monday Evenings are cancelled / Subbing classes for City of San Jose / Fourth of July” I bet you can guess without even having received the e-mail what it was about. Big important news – class is cancelled. Then exciting news – I’m subbing classes. Then a note about Fourth of July. This gives the recipient a chance to decide if they need to open it right away. I know that sometimes I don’t have time to read all my e-mail in one sitting so I prioritize. I usually have a few I have to come back and read.
In the e-mail I mentioned above, I did take the time to remind people of my regular class schedule, since I was sending out an e-mail anyway. People get busy, people forget, people need to be reminded of what is happening. I can keep track of MY schedule, I can have that in my head, but I can’t have other people’s too. So when they remind me of what classes they have and when I appreciate it. The same goes with blogs. I have a few blogs I read consistently, but sometimes the ones I want to read don’t have consistent postings so I need to be reminded that they are there. This is another thing I need to work on because, again, I don’t want to “bother” people, but when I DO post a link to my blog on FB people read it and they thank me for reminding them. It’s ok to remind people. If it truly bother’s them they will let you know.
5–Send Thank you Notes.
One Nia teacher I know would send out a thank you e-mail every once in a while after class. Made me happy. I was thankful to be able to attend her class, but she would send an e-mail thanking us all for attending. Since it made me so happy, I figured it made others happy too. Of course, you can also send an actual note via the US Post Office. So many of us seldom get actual mail a thank you note would be a nice surprise. I appreciate that my students take the time to come dance with me every week, sometimes twice a week. So sending a note letting them know is important to me. I didn’t even think of this as a marketing tool until I was writing this. People liked to be thanked. Clients deserved to be thanked.
So this is just a short list. It is not trail blazing information, you probably already know these things. It is just a reminder or maybe a little encouragement. I have learned that I write and post things as much for me as for you. I will probably stumble across this in the future and say, “Yeah, that’s right, sending an e-mail is not as bothersome as you think.”
So what do you think? Even if you are not a business owner you are probably a customer on the receiving end of some of these things. What do you think? Do you have ideas you can share?
Posted in Helpful Hints, Misc | Tagged: business owner, client, marketing expert, marketing guru, marketing tool, Nia class, Nia experience, Nia schedule, Nia Teacher | Leave a Comment »
Posted by terrepruitt on April 24, 2012
A post ago I posted about Healing Sounds. In Nia classes participants are encouraged to make noise or what we call sound. One reason to sound is to let the teacher of the class know you are breathing. This holds true for many exercise classes. Wanting students/participants to be breathing holds true for all teachers. There are a lot of reasons to sound, it does not have to be for healing or feeling better. But as I stated in that post, I just happened to come across that information and those sounds so I thought it would be fun to bring the list to class and use them as a focus.
The first time we used the Healing Sounds in a Nia Class, I had written each sound down on a separate piece of paper and I taped them to the mirror. Before class I verbally reviewed each sound. Our focus was the Healing Sounds with an intent of bringing some healing. I invited the participants to make these noises during class. The general invitation was to make them any way; they could breath in and make the noise on one long exhale, they could make them quick and staccato, they could make the tone high or low. Whatever they wanted. Whatever they felt. As with most focuses I do bring them into play specifically at times so when we were punching or kicking I might have encouraged them to make loud and forceful sounds. I encouraged them at one point to try each sound. I also had them play with saying a sound at least six times as was mentioned in the information I had found. For my own practice I know that I used the sounds in a pattern and as with many things when one person does it others follow. So we did a lot of lead and follow with sound as each person thought of different ways to use the sounds. It was very fun.
After the class I read to them what the sounds were related to and what they assisted with. It was very fascinating. Some commented that they had been drawn to a particular sound and they could see how that would be an area in which assistance would be appreciated. Some had fun doing a good job of using all the sounds. Some admitted that some sounds were more fun to make than others.
The most recent time that I used the healing sounds I again taped up the papers with each sound written on it. But this time I read the information before class. So the participants were aware of what each sound was prior to dancing. The focus and intent were the same, but with the knowledge of what each sound assisted with some Nia students decided to focus on the specific sounds they felt would help them. Again we had the freedom of how to make the sound and when to make it. It is so exhilarating to hear my students weave sounding into the dance and to hear them make the sounds in their own way.
This second time around it was rewarding to hear my students say, “Yay! I was just thinking about the healing sounds and hoping you would do them again soon.” So they enjoyed it the first time and were looking forward to it.
I think I just decided today that with each routine I teach, with each round, I am going to do at least one class at each location (Willow Glen San Jose, Campbell, and Blossom Hill San Jose) where the focus is the healing sounds. Whether the belief is that they actually heal or not we all have a lot of fun with it. And they are sounds that my class actually make!
You don’t have to be in a Nia class to experiment with the sounds. Have you used them?
Posted in Helpful Hints, Nia, Sounding | Tagged: FOO, HAA, Healing Sounds, HOO, Nia, Nia Blossom Hill, Nia Campbell, Nia class, Nia participants, Nia San Jose, Nia student, Nia Willow Glen, SHEE, SHOO, sounding, SSS | 2 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on April 19, 2012
In a Nia class the participants are encouraged to make sounds. There are many reasons to make sounds while you are working out. One, is to ensure breathing. As you are making a sound there is air going out, and in order to repeat it, there has to be air that was inhaled. So making sounds during an exercise class is a great way to let the teacher know there is breathing going on. There are also specific sounds related to specific things, but we don’t always have to be so particular. Sometimes just any sound will do. I did a post on Sounding in July of 2009. That is when I was brand new to Nia and new to teaching. I was still learning to be vocal. I had no probably being vocal as I was teaching but as a student I didn’t always participate. So I believe I understand some of the reasons a person might not want to sound and some of those reasons are the very reasons we SHOULD be making noise. All of these points can easily lead to additional posts, and they just might (a sounding series?), but for this post I am going to share what I found a while ago about healing sounds.
There are sounds associated with the chakras so a while back I was thinking I could bring a list of them to my Nia classes and I could use them to encourage my Nia students to sound. But I found a different list instead. Before I share the information with you I want you to play along with me. Pick one sound from the six below. Just pick one that appeals to you right now as you are reading it. Don’t think, just pick one.
SHOO, HAA, HOO, SSS, FOO, and SHEE.
Now keep playing along with me. Inhale and then say the sound you picked out loud on the exhale. Now do that six times. How do you feel?
Well, according to Sales Creators, a business problem solving company, the above sounds are healing sounds related to specific problems or issues. As I mentioned I had wanted to find some sounds that we could make in my Nia classes that would be fun and associated with chakras. As I was looking I discovered this information. At the time I didn’t know it was from a company that helped with business problems, I just discovered that now as I tried to locate the source of my information. In glancing quickly at the website, it looks pretty interesting. They actually speak to wellness of the entire person. What? REALLY? On a sales and marketing consulting company’s website? Yes.
Anyway here is what the information said in summary.
SHOO is a sound that helps alleviate problems associated with a sense of depression. The information states that you will feel better after having repeated it six times. The liver and the gall bladder is positively affected by the vibration of this sound.
HAA helps alleviate anger and helps calm the heart and regulate the small intestine.
HOO is a body temperature regulating sound. It helps one to not become too cold and balances the spleen, pancreas, and stomach.
SSS is a balance sound. SSS helps to regain equilibrium in the nervous system and the body. The vibration of this sound cleanses the lungs and regulates the large intestine.
FOO is another body temperature regulating sound but this one helps with a high body temperature. So to me is sounds as if you are typically hot making this sound will help cool you down. This sound is said to stabilize the kidneys, bladder, and adrenal glands.
SHEE helps relieve stress, tension, and anxiety. The instructions say that if you are under stress make this sound 36 times. It helps with regulating the blood circulatory systems and the central nervous system.
I truly believe that vibrations affect us, so to me it makes sense that certain ones would affect us in certain ways. I was hoping that without your knowledge, without you thinking about it you would gravitate to one of the sounds that would help you.
So, did the sound you randomly picked match up to what you were feeling? And now that you know what is associated with each sound are they a few you might want to try out? What do you think about vibrations and healing sounds?
Posted in Helpful Hints, Misc, Sounding | Tagged: business problem solving, chakras, exercise class, exercise teacher, good vibrations, Healing Sounds, Nia, Nia class, Nia exercise, Nia participants, Nia Sounds, Nia students, Nia Teacher, regulate body temperature, relieve anxiety, relieve stress, relieve tension, sales and marketing consulting, Sales Creators, sounding, sounding series, workout class | 7 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on March 8, 2012
Have you ever heard about doing a random act of kindness? We are often encouraged to commit acts of kindness. The acts can be simple and they could be random. Pay the toll on the bridge for the person behind you, pay for the coffee for the person behind you in line at the coffee shop, help someone whose car is broken down, things like that. Always for other people. But how often do you hear about doing small acts of kindness for yourself? Small acts of kindness for your body? I’m going to go out on a limb and say not often. I am not talking about getting a massage or buying something new that will add to our happiness. I am not talking about the “take time for yourself” kind of kindness. I am talking about little things that we probably don’t even realize would be a small act of kindness to ourself and to our body.
I was listening to a Nia Continuing Education recording and Debbie Rosas said to do small acts of kindness for ourselves throughout the day. In this Nia training she briefly mentioned the act being a shift in posture, something having to do with the body. The reference to an adjustment in the body reminded me of the information in my post about Dance Conditioning Tips. In reading the tips I thought they were not just for dance and could be applied to everyday living. The tip was to sense your body while doing a task and see if is in alignment. Well there are more things than just “off” alignment that could cause discomfort, so I was thinking of things that we could do to be kind to the body. Maybe some of them are just adjustments in the way we are sitting that can be made. If your neck is tense is your keyboard to high? Can it be lowered or can your seat be raised? Would the small act of sitting straighter be kind to you back? How about the much talked about and needed break? Taking just a few minutes away from the desk for a little stretch or shake out.
What about a glass of water? A small and simple way to be kind to your body. Would you object to closing your eyes for a moment and taking deep breaths? It’s a great way to show some body kindness. I bet you could go for taking off your shoes and wiggling your toes and flexing your feet moving your ankles—-I bet your feet would LOVE you for that small kindness.
Ok, I have one, it is a big one, and don’t deny you have done it because I would bet we ALL have done it at one time or another . . . . . don’t wait! Don’t hold it. Get up and go to the restroom. I bet more of us have done that than not. We have to go to the restroom because of that small kindness of a glass of water, but we just want to finish one more thing, then we will go. Then that one thing turns into another and next thing you realize you are sprinting to the restroom. Do your bladder a small kindness and don’t “do one more thing”. Stop what you are doing and go to the restroom.
These are all little things, so small, you might not even realize how big of an impact they can have until you try one. The “small” part allows you to do them without much or any interruption to your day. Just little adjustments or small acts of kindness for yourself to fit in easily to your day.
So what do you think? Do you think you any of these would be something you can do? Can you think of a small act of kindness that you can do? Can you think of a small act of kindness that you can do for your body? Do tell.
Posted in Helpful Hints, Misc | Tagged: body kindness, dance conditioning tips, Debbie Rosas, kind to the body, Nia, Nia Continuing Educations, Nia training, Random acts of kindness, small act of kindness, take a break, taking time for yourself | 6 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on March 3, 2012
Not too long ago on Facebook a friend of mine posted a list I found to be very interesting. It was a list of food people crave (from Naturopathy Works). The list was an explanation and a counter to the craving.. If you crave this . . . . your body needs that. I thought it was awesome. I love the idea. The food craving or behaviors listed are generally “unhealthy”, the list then shows the thing that is needed; sometimes a vitamin, a mineral, or something along those lines. Then to be ultimately helpful there is a list of suggestions as to what to eat or do, in order to help with the craving or behavior. Isn’t that marvelous. Isn’t it interesting? I thought so.
If you crave Chocolate, your body needs magnesium so you could substitute a healthy alternative of raw nuts and seeds, legumes, fruits. Oh honestly, as I typed this I heard the collective future groan of the chocolate lovers that read this. I know there are people who believe there is no substitute for chocolate. And sometimes, there isn’t. If your heart, head, and mouth are dead set on chocolate, there usually isn’t anything that will suffice, but if you are actually willing to forego it and try something else to satisfy your craving there is a healthy alternative.
For some of the food cravings there is a list of things you might really need, coffee or tea for instance. If you are craving coffee or tea the list states you really need phosphorous, sulfur, NaCl (salt), iron. I would suggest that you then think about your diet and what you have eaten and decide what you might really need. For me I can honestly say I doubt I EVER need salt. I think I get quite enough of it in my diet. So I wouldn’t need to try the substitutions for salt which are: Sea salt, apple cider vinegar (on salad). I might want to try the chicken, beef, liver, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy, nuts, legumes for the phosphorous, or the meat, fish and poultry, seaweed, greens, black cherries for the iron. But I don’t think I would need the garlic, onion, cruciferous vegetables for the sulfur, but maybe the egg yolks, red peppers, and muscle protein. If you read my blog you know I get a ton of garlic and onion (my only flavorings!) and cruciferous veggies. But I am not big on protein, so I am sure that is where I would get the help if I were to look for a substitute.
As I said this list has food cravings and behaviors, as in “General Over Eating” and for that the items needed are silicon with a substitution of nuts and seeds, but a behavior or elimination of avoiding refined starches. Other things this list states a body might need if it is over eating is tryptophan so try cheese, liver, lamb, raisins, sweet potato, spinach, vitamin C supplements or orange, green, red fruits and vegetables for tyrosine.
I found this interesting and helpful. I haven’t had much time to put it to use, but I plan too. A healthy alternative is often a great way to go. But then there are times I feel it is ok to give into the craving, but the key is moderation. Do you find this interesting? Would you give it a try? Let us know if any of this helps satisfy a craving.
Posted in Food, Helpful Hints | Tagged: crave chocolate, crave fatty foods, crave oil, crave salt, cruciferous veggies, Facebook, Facebook Friend, food cravings, healthy alternative, I want chocolate, Naturopathy, substitute for food cravings | 4 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on February 25, 2012
Are wrist blood pressure monitors accurate? I was wondering because my blood pressure seems low when I use my wrist blood pressure monitor. I know meditative body mind practices like Nia can help keep blood pressure down, but it seems really low. The first thing I looked at on the internet made me laugh. The question was, “How accurate are wrist blood pressure monitors? Mine consistently shows a lower blood pressure reading than that taken by my doctor.” And a portion of the answer said, “blood pressure measurements taken at the wrist are usually higher and less accurate than those taken at your upper arm.”
I often think that blood pressure taken at the doctor’s office is higher just due to the stress of being at the doctor’s office. Even if you don’t have what they call “white coat syndrome” sometimes the stress of getting to the doctor’s office (maybe there is traffic, or you have had to interrupt your busy life to take time to go to the doctor), the stress of WHY you are at the doctor’s (most of us don’t go to the doctor when we are healthy and feeling fine, so the fact that we are there could be stressful), or the stress of having to wait (often times we don’t get called in by our appointment time, or we do and we are stuck sitting on the table) can be causes for higher blood pressure readings than normal. I think that a blood pressure reading at home is more accurate because you are IN your life. You are IN your normal stresses. That is why I was wondering about the wrist cuffs because I think the situation (home monitor) is more ideal then doctor office monitoring. But with mine showing lower than I would expect I was wondering. It isn’t actually LOW, it is just lower than I expect. Because what I usually do is think, “Oh, I should check my blood pressure.” as I am downstairs so I run upstairs and try to sit and wait before taking it, but I end up pressing the button and just seems lower than I would guess because I was just moving around.
The American Heart Association states:
|Systolic mm Hg (upper #)
||Diastolic mm Hg
||less than 120
|less than 80
||120 – 139
|80 – 89
|High Blood Pressure
(Hypertension) Stage 1
140 – 159
90 – 99
|High Blood Pressure
(Hypertension) Stage 2
160 or higher
100 or higher
Just like with all information I found conflicting information. I found information stating that wrist monitors were good and I found information stating they were not accurate. The main concern regarding accuracy was arm position. The common statement was that the readings accuracy is affected by the arm position so if the arm was not properly placed the reading could be wrong. Makes sense, but I was not truly understand why resting one’s left elbow on a table so that the right and monitor were at heart height would be such a challenge to people using a wrist monitor. I also found information stating that wrist monitors were more expensive than arm cuffs, but then the monitors that I saw being advertised on the internet were less than the cuff ones. So, again, a lot of conflicting information. I did see information stating that wrist monitor quality (meaning reading accuracy) had improved a lot I personally think that cuff blood pressure monitor, the kind where you put your arm in the cuff and secure it around your upper arm, is more accurate. However, I also believe they are more expensive, so I bought a wrist monitor.
If you are interesting in having a blood pressure monitor at home, I suggest you buy one from a place that allows you to return it. Then when you go to the doctor take your monitor and take your blood pressure with it to compare to the doctor’s blood pressure monitor. If it is not accurate then you can return it to where you bought it.
There is a technique for ensure your arm is in the correct position when using a wrist monitor that could be easier than the elbow-table method. Cross you arm over your heart, as if you are holding your right shoulder in your left hand. This ensures no movement and that the monitor is above the heart/level with the heart. Don’t hold your shoulder just let your fingers rest on the front of your shoulder. I thought this was an excellent method.
Are you thinking about owning a blood pressure monitor? Wrist or arm cuff? Do you already have a blood pressure monitor at home? Wrist or arm cuff? Do you get a little “white coat syndrome” at the doctor’s office?
Posted in Helpful Hints, Misc | Tagged: blood pressure, Blood Pressure Monitors, body-mind practice, diastolic, meditation, Mind-body practice, Nia, Nia Practice, systolic, white coat syndrome, wrist blood pressure monitor | 12 Comments »