Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

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    Thurs 8:45 am

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Posts Tagged ‘Amazon’

Lateral Travel

Posted by terrepruitt on February 11, 2014

In Nia we have a base of 52 Moves. Not surprising they are called The 52 Moves of Nia. As I have stated before they are not unique to Nia. You have probably done some of them at one point in your life. If you have taken dance or you participate in a group exercise class that is dance oriented then you more than likely have done some of them. They are just gathered into a group for Nia because of their benefits and fun. So they are included in the Nia Routines. Not all of them are in every routine, but a good portion appear in each routine. Plus whenever there is Free Dance they might make an appearance. One of the base moves . . . . moves we do primarily with the base of our body . . . is Lateral Traveling.

Lateral Traveling is specific and different from Traveling In Directions. Traveling in Directions is a move done in all directions . . . . Lateral Traveling is done to the side. The Nia Technique (have you gotten your copy yet? Click here to go to Amazon to order your copy.) describes Lateral Travel as a step together step or a grapevine. The specifics are to start in a closed stance, then take one step to the side, then place your feet together (moving the other leg to the first leg that stepped), then take one step to the side, then move the leg toward the other one, but instead of placing it next to your leg cross it back.

A grapevine is where you step one leg to the side then the next step is BEHIND, then step to the side, where the next step goes depends. Sometimes you can land on the heel or behind or with the knee up. Grapevines are a nice replacement for four point turns. There are many reasons why people don’t turn so using this lateral move, the grapevine, is perfect.

With both methods the instructions say to use your hands to lead you. Have them out in the direction you are going. The instructions also say, “When you step behind, step onto the back ball of the foot and keep your knees spring loaded and your spine vertical.” For clarification, the “back ball of the foot” is the foot that is in the back or behind.

This is a “two side” move. To practice you do to one side then the other. To the left, then to the right. (Or to the right, then the left.)

So this is the specific Lateral Travel: Step together step or grapevine. I have found my self using the phrase “travel laterally” at times when I am leading my San Jose Nia class (or any Nia class for that matter) and I am not instructing them to do the specific Lateral Travel. But I guess that is the difference. There is “travel laterally” and do the “Lateral Travel” move.

Many moves in Nia are good for the coordination. This is one. Step together step is not necessarily a difficult move but depending on the speed and what comes before it and after it, it can call upon your coordination. Although, I would say this is one of the easier 52 Moves of Nia.

Varying the speed and adding some movement to the body can change it up a bit and perhaps add a some challenge to it.

So there you have it another move in Nia’s 52 Moves.

You probably find yourself doing this one often, huh? Even when you are not on the dance floor?

Posted in 52 Moves (of Nia), Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Stepping Back Onto The Ball Of Your Foot – One Of Nia’s 52 Moves

Posted by terrepruitt on June 27, 2013

Stepping Back Onto The Ball Of Your Foot is certainly not unique to Nia.  Many dance modalities incorporate this move.  In fact this move is incorporated into every day life.  How often are you moving forward only have to stop and move back?  You could be in line at the store or anywhere when the person in front of you moves back towards you so you take a step back.  While you might not “hang” out on the ball of your foot as we do in Nia you more than likely don’t take a step backwards heel first.  Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaSo, yes, Nia has taken moves that might be done in other dance practices, martial arts, and even everyday life and put them in their list of Nia’s 52 Moves.  Nia then weaves the moves into the Nia Routine choreography.  This move Stepping Back Onto The Ball Of Your Foot is part of our Base Moves.  It is done with the feet and legs and they are a part of the base.

This move is described on page 123 of the Nia Technique book written by Debbie Rosas and Carlos Rosas and you can purchase it from Amazon.

As I have said many times there is a proper way to do all moves and while you are practicing them and learning them you do it the proper way.  Then as you come across it in a Nia class while doing a Nia routines your body will know the proper way yet be able to adapt to the choreography that you are dancing at the moment.

So to practice this move you can start in Open Stance.  Then with one leg step back onto the ball of foot.  When stepping back pull the leg straight behind not to either side.  Keep the foot parallel to the stationary foot, don’t turn the heel.  As is indicated step back onto the ball of the foot.  Keep the spine up and the heel high off of the earth.  Then shift your weight onto the foot of which you just stepped back on and take the other foot off the ground.  Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaYour torso is upright, pelvis, chest, shoulders, chin, eyes facing forward.  Do the same movement with the other foot.  You don’t necessarily always have to start in open stance.

After you are comfortable with the stationary start, walk around and stop and step into the move.

This move helps with the mobility and flexibility in the foot.  It also helps create or improve stability in the ankle.  It helps with balance, especially if you hang out for a measured amount of time on the ball of your foot!

At the moment I can think of one routine in which we step back onto the ball of foot as a large portion of one of the dances.  I know we step back all the time, but in this routine I think of one of the songs as “showcasing” this move.  The choreography calls for lifting the leg of the foot that is off the ground.  Or doing a knee lift.  So that is a good example of the variations that Nia choreography uses with its 52 Moves.

Well, what do you think about this move?  Can you see how it helps with mobility and flexibility in the foot?

Posted in 52 Moves (of Nia), Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Nia Stance Sounds

Posted by terrepruitt on January 5, 2013

There are a few posts on my blog about sounding in Nia.  I even have a separate category for it.  See over there to the left under categories, under Nia?  Sounding is what we call making noise in a Nia class.  Sounding is great for many reasons.  Sounding is a release.  It can help release tension, emotions, spirit . . . whatever needs “releasing”.  Sounding is fun.  Sounding can assist in the stabilization of the torso.  Sounding can help ground you . . . physically, emotionally, and your spirit.  Often times when I am doing Nia both when I am teaching and when I am a student, my spirit just makes a sound.  I don’t plan it, I don’t think about it, a noise just comes out.  I “woo” a lot.  But sometimes other sounds comes out.  Sometimes the sound I make makes me laugh because I really don’t think about the sound, something just comes out.  I could be thinking of something, for example, maybe the move we are doing reminds me of a swirling skirt, so then the sound could be a “whosh” as in the sound of a skirt, or it could be a giggle of a girl twirling in a skirt.  I don’t always think about the sound I just let it out.  Sometimes I do think of the sound.  Sounding can be purposeful.  The noise can have a purpose.  I have posted about healing sounds and sounds associated with the chakras.  This post is about the sounds that are associated with Nia stances, which are part of Nia’s 52 moves.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaThe picture in this post is an approximation of how MY feet would be placed in the various stances.  Remember that your stances would probably be slightly different.  The width would be according to YOUR body and your body’s way.  The picture is just to give you an idea and maybe help remind you of the various stances.  At this time I have a post associated with four of the six stances.

In Nia’s closed stance the sound is the vowel sound “o”.  The sound is made to “create volume in your chest cavity”.

In Nia’s open stance the sound is (to say) “balance” or “ground”.  Saying the word “balance” can assist you in your balance.  The word “ground” can assist with allowing you to feel grounded and sense balance.

The sound for Nia’s “A” stance is “aaaaahh!”.  You say it on an exhale.  Letting out all your breath until you are ready to inhale.

Sumo stance or riding stance (feet as wide apart as if you were riding a horse) has an explosive sound.  Say “ha!”  To me this helps with stabilization.

The bow stance has a sound of “u”.  The bow stance is done with either foot in front, not just with the left foot in front as shown in the example.

The cat stance (standing on one foot, with the other foot pressed against the standing leg) has the sound “wooooooo” associated with it.  This is done on the exhale.  This stance is also done on the other foot and not just the left one as in the example.

So as you are practicing the Nia stances you can use the sounds associated with them for added benefit and fun.  It is just fun to make noise.  To me it adds to the experience.  In my classes I encourage people to make any noise they want.  I also like to play with the noises, sounds, and words associated with the move.

Do you attend a dance exercise class  or exercise that encourages you to make noise?

Information regarding the sounds made with the Nia stances can be found in The Nia Technique book written by Debbie Rosas and Carlos Rosas (NKA, Carlos AyaRosas).  The book can be purchased from Amazon.

Posted in Nia, Sounding | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

My Reasons For Getting A Blendtec

Posted by terrepruitt on October 20, 2012

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaPeople ask me about my blender.  Just this week we were talking about super blenders after our Nia class.  A lot of people are interested in making green smoothies.  I was never interested in them because they sound so gross and the ones I had seen looked gross.  I also really like to EAT my fruits and veggies and felt I was eating enough, but I realized I could use more in my diet.  Eating more is sometimes difficult and that is why people have been making and drinking smoothies for so long.  It is a great way to get some additional vegetables in your diet.  I chose the Blendtec for a few reasons.  I started looking at it because it was on sale at Costco.  From there I started looking at prices on the internet.  I found that I could get a Blendtec for less than a Vitamix.  That was a big selling point to me, but not the only one.  I did more research.  The decision will just come down to what you prefer.  In addition to the Blendtec being less expensive I feel the one I got at Costco was a great deal.  At Costco they sell the blender and two containers/jars for less than the price I’ve seen elsewhere for the blend with just one container/jar .

To save you time, nutshell list:

–two jars; WildSide and FourSide
–easy to clean “buttons”
–it fits under most cabinets (Company claim)
–no tamping
–preset buttons/controls
–variable speed buttons/controls
–pulse button/control
–3 HP

If you are looking at buying one of these super blenders you might notice that not only are the blenders different but the containers they sell are different.  They have tall ones, short ones, round ones, square ones . . . all types.  With the Blendtec you can buy the blender with what they call the FourSide Jar or the blender with the WildSide Jar.  Now I didn’t know the difference and I didn’t know if I would want both jars, but when I saw that the jar alone was $100 and that Costco was selling the blender with BOTH containers for less than what I was seeing it cost for the blender with one container, I thought that was a good deal.  (I am now seeing the same deal on Amazon so if you don’t belong to Costco you can get the same deal on Amazon.)

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaNow the bummer to me was that this one was only sold in black.  All of my appliances are white and I would have loved to have a white one, but I wasn’t planning on leaving it on my counter anyway so I didn’t want to spend the extra money for white.

The features on the Blendtec that sold me were the “buttons”.  I am an old school girl so I like to be able to control things and I think knobs are better than those electronic squishy “buttons”.  With the knob on the Vitamix I was assuming I could get better control over the speed of the blender.  But then I realized, I don’t need more control.  What I need is not to have a knob that I have to clean under, on, and around.  The Blendtec has been amazing in how easy it is to clean.  I always seem to drip green smoothie all down the front so every time I do I am thankful I don’t have knobs and “real” buttons to clean all around.

The Blendtec is shorter than the Vitamix and will fit under most cabinets.  Even though I was not planning on leaving mine out on the counter, being a shorter blender means it would fit IN the cabinet better.  Being a shorter blender also means it is easier to use because you can add things easier, as in you don’t have to get the step stool to reach the top of the container!  :-)

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaThe real thing that sold me is the information I read which said you don’t need a tamper with the WildSide Jar.  Now, I am not certain, but I think the Blendtec containers don’t need tamping because the lids are vented so I think the air gets in there and that does the job of tamping.  I liked the idea of just turning the blender on and letting it do its thing.

That is another thing, in addition to not tamping, the Blendtec has push-and-go buttons.  You just push the button for what you want and it does it itself.  I decided I didn’t need the control of doing it myself and if I do, the Blendtec has variable speed buttons and a pulse.  So I can turn on the blender to whatever speed I want or pulse it.  So I still have the control if I want.

Also the Blendtec has more horsepower than the Vitamix, that might be another reason a tamper is not required.

Please keep in mind I am comparing base models.  There are a lot of different models that are high-end and professional, but I was just looking at the two comparable models and these are the things that “sold” me on the Blendtec.

I would love to learn more about the Vitamix  if you have one and you would like to share?  Any of you out there wanting to get a super blender?  Do any of these things sound like features you’d like?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Too Bitter To Swallow

Posted by terrepruitt on May 10, 2012

I have a friend on FB who works really hard to feed her family healthy things.  I think there are food allergies and intolerances involved so she has to be very particular with what she feeds her family.  Often times she posts some pretty creative cooking ideas.  One thing she is always asking about is greens.  How do you cook your greens?  She usually states which green she is working with but she always comes back with, “It is so bitter.”  Now some of the greens she says are bitter taste a little bitter to me, but with olive oil, salt, garlic, and onion the flavor is masked.  Some of them she claims are bitter aren’t bitter to me.  I really think that the bitter taste has less to do with which vegetable than with our genes.

Back in 1931 a chemist (Arthur Fox) was pouring a powdered chemical (PTC) and some of its dust got in the air.  His assistant said the dust tasted bitter, while he couldn’t taste anything.  The chemist proceeded to experiment with PTC and the taste on his friends and family.  Some could taste a strong bitter taste, while some could taste a mild bitter taste, while some could taste nothing at all.  Seventy-two years later in 2003 the gene that is responsible for this was discovered.  They call it the PTC gene or TAS2R38.  This gene has seven forms, five of which are rare, and two of which are common.  The two common forms are the ones that allow for tasting bitter and one that does not.  Since all genes come in pairs we can end up with both being the tasting gene, or both being the non-tasting gene, or one of each.

If an individual ends up with both of the genes that allow for them to taste PTC then they will be able to taste bitter things more strongly than others.  If an individual has the genes that are the “non-tasting” genes then they don’t taste bitter.  Then there are the individuals that have one of each. It has been found that there is a familial link, if some family members can taste the PTC than other can too.

I would imagine that if an individual has a set of bitter-taste genes then it would be almost impossible to cover up the bitter taste of many vegetables.  I am thinking that my friend and her family must have a set of those genes because she says she has cooked some veggies a multitude of ways and her comment is still, “It is so bitter.”  Probably the only way to deal with the bitter is to cover it up entirely in a sauce but then that would somewhat defeat the purpose of trying to eat a nice green healthy vegetable.  Plus I would bet that most of the sauces contain ingredients she is trying to avoid.  She is determined though.  She knows that the bitter vegetables have really good stuff in them so she keeps trying.  In the meantime her family is still getting the nutrients even though it is bitter and doesn’t taste good.

There are test strips that can be purchased to see which gene you have.  I found some on Amazon.  Interesting, huh?

Do you have a good sense of taste?  Do you taste bitter really strongly?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Little Speaker for the iPad, iPhone, iPod, iTouch

Posted by terrepruitt on August 6, 2011

Not too long ago another Nia Teacher and I were practicing Nia in a local park.  She had brought her laptop so that we could look at the DVD and practice the routine.  As you might realize it is very difficult to see a laptop screen outside when you are not right in front of it.  We were dancing to the DVD, so we were not right in front of it.  She also brought a long a little round speaker.  She hooked it up to her laptop to help boost the sound.  When we finally gave up on the laptop she plugged the speaker into my iPhone.  Cool.  It was round and had pretty good sound.  It had a little leather looking case and was it just so cute.  Of course, I wanted one.  It is perfect to carry around “just in case”.  I pretty much always have my iPhone because I have my music on it, but not everyplace I have taught has a sound system so a little round speaker would be GREAT!  It could fit in my purse.

So to Amazon I went.  I am the type that looks at something online for a little while before I decide to buy it.  I have a house FULL of stuff.  I do not need anymore stuff.  I am a stuff collector.  So I tend to hesitate before I buy more stuff.  When I looked online I was seeing a little round speaker for more money than I need to spend on stuff I don’t need.  ;-)  Right?  I mean, when I am buying something I can live without I tend to have a limit as to how much I will spend.  So I looked around on the website.  I was finding some nice speakers.  I read some reviews.  I looked here and there.

iHome mini speaker, rechargeable speaker for iPad, iPhone, laptop, MP3 playerI spotted a BLUE one (uh-oh, BLUE?).  It was round and cute and it was blue!  It was rechargeable so it doesn’t take batteries.  I really like that.  It also expanded to give you “larger” sound.  But since it was blue, cute, expandable and rechargeable I thought it would be more than the other speakers I was looking at, but lo and behold it was LESS.  And totally in my self-alloted price range.  But I still hesitated because I really don’t need it and even though I thought it was completely affordable I could always use that money for something else.  So, in my normal style I didn’t buy it right then.  I like to “sit on it”.  But then you know what happens?  I think about it all the time.  I end up in situations where, “Oh it would be perfect if I had that (fill in the blank) that I wanted.”

iHome mini speaker, expandable speaker for iPad, iPhone, laptop, MP3 playerWhen I always find myself thinking about the item for a while, I usually give in.  And I am so glad I did.  It is so cute.  And the sound is pretty good for the price and what it is.  The sound is WAY better than the sound that comes out of the iPhone.  A mini-speaker.  Yay!  Does it give GREAT sound?  No.  Is it stereo?  No.  But it give really good sound and I can hear the music much better than on my iPhone.

The description on Amazon says: “Speaker works with any 3.5 mm headphone jack, perfect for laptops, cell phones, portable game devices, MP3 players, etc.”  So you can use it on all of your devices.

It doesn’t come with a nice leather case like my friend’s but it does have its own little bag.  That is good enough for me.  I just like something that fits the device AND its cord.  Something some people might like is that its audio cord does not come apart from its charging cord.  I know we end up having so many cords that it is easy to misplace (or as my friend says, “Put away so well.”) some of the cords.  When you have a cord to charge the device and a separate one to use it sometimes the power cord can get lost because you don’t use it as often.  Well, these two cords do not come apart.  There is a little plastic separator that hold them together, it is the little square below the USB connector and the audio plug, and they are connected near the end too and become one cord.  The cords also have a build in “clip” to keep them neat and tidy.  In this picture it is to the left of the bag, the black plastic square.  Cool.  All built-in!

Blue things make me happy.  Blue things that are cute make me happy.  Blue things that are cute that allow me to hear my Nia music and all music better make me really happy.  And that it was less than $20 makes me so happy I want share!

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Its All About Love

Posted by terrepruitt on October 14, 2010

As you know, I wanted to share Nia with the world. There are a lot of people, students, teachers, trainers, and participants that share my desire.  For me the easiest and quickest thing to do was to join the plethora of Social Networking.  So I joined Twitter and when I did I looked for people who were tweeting about Nia.  In doing so I ran across Lissa Rankin.  She lives North of the San Francisco Bay Area.

She recently wrote a book that I had no intention of buying because I just didn’t think I needed it.  Then during her book tour she did an in person launch but she was across the country.  So for us on the west coast she did a live online launch.  She read from her book and that is what had me jumping on Amazon to buy it.  Her book is not so much NEW information as it is more like confirmation for me.  I am not even half way through the book so I can’t say that I won’t learn something I never knew.

I can say that I love the way it is written.  Lissa is down to earth and lovable.  While she is an Medical Doctor not all of her answers are “go see a doctor”.  This last section I read had me jumping up to the laptop because I have been trying to find a post topic and the feeling I felt made me think, “Ah-ha!”

The feeling I am getting from this book thus far is health and well-being.  Every topic she touches upon has the same message . . . “its your body . . . . be aware of what is a healthy state and a not healthy state . . . love and take care of your body . . . above all be safe.”

It is a book — so far — I would recommend women of all ages read and men read too.  It could serve as a great learning tool for men and women a like.  I am sure when I am done reading it I will have more to say, but so far, I just wanted to put it out there that even though this book is about “What’s Up Down There?” its underlying message is be healthy and safe and love yourself and your body.

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Sodalite and Moonstone

Posted by terrepruitt on April 29, 2010

Sodalite – From the things I have read the main thing sodalite is believed to do is bring calm, inner peace, and balance. I have often seen it associated with helping make clear and rational decisions. (Which I would imagine would be easier if your mind was calm and you had inner peace, so those two things seem like they would go together.) In addition to clear and rational thinking, some information states it helps with creative thought too. I have also seen that it helps with inflammation which goes along with the information I have seen that says it assist with immune systems. (Because inflammation is part of that system.)

Moonstone – I see that this stone is said to also bring calm. Most information states, “Moonstone is a stone of inner growth and strength.” Also, it is said to stimulate balance of hormones. (Which we must remember is necessary in males as well as females.) Several things say it is a stone of protection and that it is a healing stone.

This is stuff that interests me. At one time I thought it was pretty (what I call) woo-woo, but then when I start looking into Nia I started seeing things a little differently. When I first discovered Nia I bought the book (The Nia Technique Book). As I started reading it I thought it was too “woo-woo”, but then they related it to science and it made sense. Then I started thinking that there had to be things on this earth that we were given before we had science that could assist with our health and wellness. So I thought, “Why not energies in a stone?” So, I am just interested in this. I feel more comfortable when I read the information out there (and there is so much out there) and it states basically the same information. Then I feel like at least everyone is on the same page.

I was interested in some of the properties these two stones were said to have. I have not listed them all but just some. I have a few in the house. Not sure they are doing any good, but they are pretty.

Do you think stones have energies? Do you think stones have healing properties?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »