Terre Pruitt's Blog

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

  • I teach Nia! THREE group classes a week!

    Tues, and Wed 9 am

    Thurs 8:45 am

    Please see my website for details! I sub for the City of San Jose and the YMCA so check my website for dates and times!

    I am also available for private Nia and/or Personal Training!

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Posts Tagged ‘Nia teachers’

Nia Shines

Posted by terrepruitt on January 21, 2014

Nia is a cardio dance exercise . . . . yes, it is much more than that, but that is sometimes where we start.  The Nia Technique produces DVDs that teachers use to learn the Nia routines that have been choreographed by the Nia Trainers.  The teacher-learning-routines process is similar to many exercise formats that are taught in group exercises classes across the board.  Most often the music is adored by my students.  They don’t like every song, but I would begin to wonder if they did.  Nia uses a large variety and I would think it odd if EVERY SINGLE SONG was liked by every student.  Every so often though there is a song that someone asks about.  They want to know who sings it.  They want to know the words.  All of Nia routines are available for purchase as an album*, but sometimes it is just a song.  Currently I am teaching a Nia routine with one of those songs.

The song is Shine by Joshua.  The lyrics are as follows:

People want freedom in life
People want freedom in life
come seek a, come seek a
People want freedom in life

Verse I
(Shine within)
My sun is blossoming my dreams
aloft amidst the winds and the promises they sing
walking in the stream
lovin’ runs often in my veins
become light
so I breathe softly when it rains
crossing over phases of the moon seas change in a whisper
risen from the chambers inner wisdom
painted with the pigments of a vision(ary)
dancing in the plumage of illuminary
I ruminate the way that newness carries me towards my selfness fragrances in praises form a shelter
waves of vibrations pour over relics saturated in wellness precious moments envelope me so my language is angelic
tell it – like a picture spoken in scripture
listen – to the morning born from hope in the mists of enigmas ocean of rhythms sweet ambrosia of beginnings openness is living

Chorus
People want freedom in life
come seek a
way of living, breathing the light
it’s gonna be the
eve before the dawn song before the rhyme
open up and let your love shine
(love shine)
(repeat)

Verse II
Rays of sun trickle down my throat coated with sounds of growing abound
and hope flutters on a melody telling me to develop these heavenly grounds of mine
*Shine* *Shine*
Soul surfing the divine
nurturing intuitions relearning to visualize the moment’s gift it’s open like an infant’s mind
an intimate design a wish up in the sky wisps by “Spread your wings! Come let your spirit fly!” (fly fly)
Ascending inside levity mending the mind states to befriend a sublime face of a love you always knew and present beside waves of benevolence, rise, bathe and through cleansing your eyes you’ll see:
that love was always you!
flow through the mirror to embrace your destiny it’s beckoning so hold it dearly to your breast and feel the blessings the fibers of your being vibrant reasons to let me be me – free
a love shining to eternity, a love shining to eternity, a love shining to eternity, a love shining to eternity, a love shining to eternity, a love shining to eternity, a love shining to eternity, a love me to . . .

Chorus

Let your light shine, let your light shine
Let your dreams shine, let your light shine
Let your heart shine
Let it all shine, shine, shine
Shine now, shine now
(repeat)

Chorus

Heart shine, dreams shine, mind shine
I shine, you shine, we shine… we shine… we shine…

Composed, written, arranged, performed,
produced, and engineered by Joshua Seaman.

Give it a listen at:  http://music.relicpro.com/shine/  You can buy it from this site for a dollar, or you can *buy the album that this song is on from: http://www.nianow.com/product/music/r1-cd

I first looked up the words when I heard the part I have in bold.  I love that.  I hope you enjoy this song.  It is a look into some of the music that we dance to in Nia.

What type of music do you like to workout to?  Do you have a favorite song that really helps you get your “exercise on”?

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

I Changed My Mind, I DO Teach Nia

Posted by terrepruitt on January 18, 2014

I know – well, I am pretty confident that I have mentioned before in a blog post that I don’t think of myself as teaching people Nia.  Even though I say I teach Nia, I usually prefer to say I lead Nia.  I wish I could find that post because I would like to check what I said exactly because I am feeling a bit different these days.  Or maybe I have it clarified in my mind better.  I believe I said that I don’t like to say I teach Nia because I feel that a dance teacher is one that demonstrates the steps and then has the student try to do them while the teacher watches.  Then maybe the teacher demonstrates again and the student does it again and then maybe there is some adjusting done by the teacher.  Or even in a group dance class setting the move is done over and over until it is somewhat learned and then the next move is added on.  Sometimes there is a sequence of moves that is demonstrated then practiced over a few times and then a new sequence added on.  That is what I think of as teaching dance.  So in THAT way I don’t teach Nia, but I DO teach Nia.

I do not show the move then have the students practice it over and over before we dance it, but sometimes when the song allows we do a preview and practice.  It could be that the song has a long introduction in which there is no specific choreography and in that time we demo a move.  While I might not tell a participant in particular a way to tweak the move I will look out into my class and see something that could use tweaking so I might say or even do something that I hope will lead to a change.  Say, we are doing a move using our toe and I look out and see someone using their heel, I might suggest using the toe like squashing a bug or testing the water (depends on what we are doing).  So in essence I hope to teach the students that we are using our toe.  I teach the move as we are doing it as opposed to the aforementioned way.

IN addition, I like to share things about Nia while we are dancing.  Sometimes I talk about how Nia incorporates the BMES (Body, Mind, Emotion, and Spirit)  I might explain Nia’s Five Sensations while we are moving on the floor.  Allowing the Nia students to be reminded of them and possibly use them in the floorplay.  I often remind the Nia class about Natural Time letting them know they are free to move through the movement/choreography in their body’s own natural way and timing.  Sometimes this is actually part of the song and if not people are always encouraged to move in this way.

So, I take it back if I said — as I believe I did — I don’t like to say I teach Nia, because I do teach Nia.  But I don’t teach it as if it were a dance, because it is not just a dance.  While we do dance, Nia is so much more.  Maybe I should say I lead people through Nia Routines and I teach Nia?

Have you ever taken a dance class like I describe – the demo-do-type?  Do you see the difference between two?

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, Zumba, PiYo, Gentle Yoga

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

Goodie Jar – Check In #35

Posted by terrepruitt on October 25, 2013

Ha, ha, ha.  Seems like “The Fox” will not go away.  Two weeks ago I posted a video of a “live” version Ylvis did on Late Night.  Today I received word that some of my fellow Nia teachers are going to use the song in their Halloween Nia Routine.  They even printed out the words so that people can sing along.  I love it.  So funny.  I posted the words here:  I Give Up, What Does The Fox Say?

I am still filling my Goodie Jar with good things.  Remember this is a practice to help us recognize things that we might not stop to notice normally.  Also it is something to help us remember the good things even when there are things that are not good happening.  So . . . . really . . . . anyone can do it.  It is not too late to start, if you have not already.  There are two full months left of the year!

So . . . . how is your jar coming along?

Posted in Good Things in the Goodie Jar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

I Give Up, What Does The Fox Say?

Posted by terrepruitt on September 7, 2013

This past week there was a video posted on Youtube that went viral.  And I am just giving in and posting about it, because, honestly, it is stuck in my head.  It was posted on September 3, 2013 and it has over 7.5 million views.  Wow!  It is hilarious.  It was posted on Facebook, that is where I saw it.  A fellow Nia teacher posted it.  Then several of my friends posted it.  As I mentioned, the first one I saw was a Nia Teacher , she was daring other Nia Teachers to create a dance using it.  It already has some great choreography.  It is one of those videos that you watch the first time in total and utter disbelief.  It starts out as funny, then it just gets more and more funny as it goes on.  Then you have to watch it again because it is just so hilarious.  Then you just watch it again because you can’t believe it.  It is just funny.  I honestly didn’t even notice the dancing until about the fourth time.  The first time I almost choked on my lunch.  Then next two times I was laughing so hard I couldn’t see.  I also was staring at the words.

In case you want to sing the song without the video playing:

Dog goes woof
Cat goes meow
Bird goes tweet
and mouse goes squeek
Cow goes moo
Frog goes croak
And the elephant goes toot
Ducks say quack
and fish go blub
and the seal goes ow ow ow

But there’s one sound
That no one knows

What does the fox say?

Ring-ding-ding-ding-dingeringeding!
Gering-ding-ding-ding-dingeringeding!
Gering-ding-ding-ding-dingeringeding!

What the fox say?

Wa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pow!
Wa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pow!
Wa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pow!

What the fox say?

Hatee-hatee-hatee-ho!
Hatee-hatee-hatee-ho!
Hatee-hatee-hatee-ho!

What the fox say?

Joff-tchoff-tchoffo-tchoffo-tchoff!
Tchoff-tchoff-tchoffo-tchoffo-tchoff!
Joff-tchoff-tchoffo-tchoffo-tchoff!

What the fox say?

Big blue eyes
Pointy nose
Chasing mice
and digging holes
Tiny paws
Up the hill
Suddenly you’re standing still

Your fur is red
So beautiful
Like an angel in disguise
But if you meet
a friendly horse
Will you communicate by
mo-o-o-o-orse?
mo-o-o-o-orse?
mo-o-o-o-orse?

How will you speak to that
ho-o-o-o-orse?
ho-o-o-o-orse?
ho-o-o-o-orse?

What does the fox say?

Jacha-chacha-chacha-chow!
Chacha-chacha-chacha-chow!
Chacha-chacha-chacha-chow!

What the fox say?

Fraka-kaka-kaka-kaka-kow!
Fraka-kaka-kaka-kaka-kow!
Fraka-kaka-kaka-kaka-kow!

What the fox say?

A-hee-ahee ha-hee!
A-hee-ahee ha-hee!
A-hee-ahee ha-hee!

What the fox say?

A-oo-oo-oo-ooo!
Woo-oooo-ooo!

What does the fox say?

The secret of the fox
Ancient mystery
Somewhere deep in the woods
I know you’re hiding
What is your sound?
Will we ever know?
Will always be a mystery
What do you say?
You’re my guardian angel
Hiding in the woods
What is your sound?

Buppawaydo
Bubitty upupwaydo
Buppawaydo

Will we ever know?

badabapbopwaydo

I want to . . .

bababydmadom

I want to . . .

I want to know!

abittybopbopbaydom

All brought to you by Ylvis, a pair of Norwegian variety show brothers.  They have their own TV show.  And this video . . . shows you why.  Pure entertainment.  Hilarity in every second.  I can’t get enough of it.  And, obvious, neither can anyone else . . . over 7.5 million views in fours days.

Well, I hope this helps stick it in your head as it has been stuck in my head for the past few days.  I also hope to see the creative choreography out on the dance floor, from some of my fellow Nia teachers.

Here is the link to the video:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jofNR_WkoCE

And their Facebook link:

https://www.facebook.com/IkveldmedYLVIS?fref=ts

Ahh, as I said, I hope this sticks in your head.  My husband believes that the only way to get rid of an earworm is to give it to someone else.  Maybe this will help me.  Maybe you will get it stuck in your head and I will be free.  Fre-e-e-e-ee!   Fre-e-e-e-ee!  Fre-e-e-e-ee!   Ahhhh!!!

Have you seen this yet?

 

In case you are interested in hearing the fox for yourself:  Ylvis Is Correct

Posted in Entertainment, Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments »

Nia’s Routine Pamphlets

Posted by terrepruitt on June 1, 2013

Nia Technique’s Outstanding Routine DVDs (Part 3)

Nia Classes are led by Nia teachers who learn routines.  It is kind that we are only obligated by license to learn four Nia routines a year, because if we dive into the depths of a Nia routine it could easily take three months.  The training information they provide is incredible.  It is multi-faceted and multidimensional.  Three years ago I mentioned in a post that I would specify what came in Nia’s Routine for Teachers DVDs.   Well, in the three years there has actually been changes in how the information is presented.  I am using three posts to explain what I have in the routine packages that I have purchased and I am also sharing to the best of my knowledge what is in the newer ones.  At the basic level you receive a CD and a DVD and a pamphlet is available online.

This is the third post in this series.  In the first post I talked about everything that you get in the package and the sections on the DVD.  I made it through two of the sections:  the Focus and Move the Move.  The second post took us through: Learn the Move, Energize the Move, and the Music.  Here in this post I am taking a quick look at the pamphlet.

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, ZumbaIn addition to the wonderful Nia Class and explanations on the DVD there is a pamphlet.  As I said in post one of this series, the pamphlet used to be included in the routine package.  But now I believe you have to download it yourself.  I am not certain if the older ones still come with the pamphlet or not.  But if you look at the pamphlets online (must be a member) you can see how the material has changed.  I am certain that along with the morphing of the DVDs there has been a greater change over the years than I have even seen.  The routines that I own with pamphlets that came in the package have the focus and intent stated along with the “Routine Description”.  It also contains “Suggested Alternative Foci”.  It lists the 7 Cycles.  Under each cycle is gives a little information.  The cycles in which there is music it lists the song that is in that cycle and information on what it teaches you.  As an example the routine I am looking at states:

“Track 1: Sexy Teaches You To —

Move through the stances of Closed, Open, A, and Riding to ground, warm up the back and core and move from the inside out”

That is one bullet, as you can see each track has more than three bullets with information regarding what the choreography teaches you.  A lot of information!

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 next section in the pamphlet gives you the 8BC’s.  Just the bars of the 8BC’s.  There is indicators as to what the sections are in the song, but no flowering, no dressing, no choreography.  Just the bars.  There is a lot left to still do with the bars.

With the new routines, the pamphlet is a bit different.  In addition to what I’ve previously mentioned and a lot of information reminding us of what we learn in the Nia White Belt Intensive there is new information.  Such as “Working With the Focus” and that the 7 cycles remain the same, but there is differences within each cycle depending upon different things, say the focus for example.  There is also a section with the shorthand for Nia’s 52 moves because now the bars come with choreography notes.

Now the bars are in color which is used to show the different sections.  The same colors taught in the Nia White Belt Intensive.  And as I mentioned, they have choreography notes.

The pamphlet also states that as of 2012, “videos include on-screen 52 moves choreography text. You will see this appear at the beginning of each new choreography sequence, and repeat throughout the routine.”  Which is great and news to me.  At the time of this writing I have obviously not learned a routine that was created and filmed in 2012 because I have not seen the text on the videos.  Cool.

The last thing that one of the “old” versions of the pamphlet had that I am not seeing on the new ones is the Music Credits.  The ones I have list the name of the number of the track, the name, the artist, and information about each song.  I find some of that information kind of interesting.  For instance the track 1 on Oshun is Sexy, by Illumine which was actually recorded Live at Studio Nia.

So maybe now you can see why the description of a Nia Routine Teacher Training DVD needed to be three posts.  There is a lot of training in each package.  There is a lot of information to absorb in learning a routine.  I will confess that I have not done all of this on all of the routines I lead.  My intent is as I go back and complete more of these steps as I revisit the routines.  Now that I basically know the music and the moves, I can watch the other portions of the DVD and I can read the pamphlet information.  With each section of time I lead the routine I can add something new to my learning.  Nia routines are very multidimensional.  The training has many aspects.  There is so much to learn and so many different ways to do it.  Just like Nia.

I hope this gave you some information you might need or like to know in regards to Nia Routine DVDs for Teachers.

Do you have any questions?  Is there any additional information you would like?

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Celebrity Visits

Posted by terrepruitt on March 23, 2013

Whether you do Nia, Zumba, yoga, Pilates, country western dance, motor-cycle race, play tennis, or just about anything there are the “Gods” or celebrities of the practice/dance/sport.  Often the “Gods” or gurus are the masters or the top teachers, but sometimes it is the CREATOR himself/herself.  That is when the event is really rockin’.  That is when the events sell out or get so crowded it is crazy.  Well, Nia is going through a lot of changes and they have been working for a couple of years training the top instructors to move up even further to become top trainers.  The male of the male-female combo that created Nia, Carlos AyaRosas (FKA Carlos Rosas) retired a bit ago, so that left the female creator to continue on.  She is coming to the San Francisco Bay Area . . . . . which is a rather large area.  She is going to be in the North Bay, the East Bay, and the Peninsula.  And it is going to be rockin’.  She and a top trainer are going to be here.

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, Zumba

April 2013

Debbie Rosas is the (co-)creator of Nia.  Kevin VerEecke is a Nia Trainer.  They are going to be in the San Francisco Bay Area in the beginning of April (2013).  They are going to have seven classes.  It is going to be incredible.  Every thing has its superstars, its celebrities and these are ours.  It is really exciting.

I took my Nia White Belt Intensive at the Nia Headquarters in Portland.  The trainers doing the intensive were Debbie and Carlos.  Plus they were here for a “Spirit of Nia” tour within the last four years.  So I have met them both.  I have never met Kevin.

I am excited that Debbie and Kevin will be here sharing the Nia experience.  The classes that they are going to be doing are 52 Moves classes.  While we have a basic set of 52 Moves we don’t typically do all 52 in every Nia Routine.  We do many, but not usually all.  In these classes they are going to lead us through all 52 Moves.  There are going to be seven chances to check it out.

The first class that will be held will be with Keven VerEecke only in San Rafael.  Then Friday’s classes, Saturday’s Classes, and Sunday’s Classes will be both Debbie and Kevin.

The flyer indicates that all classes will have a different playlist.  I guess for some people that is important.  I know Nia enough to know that all seven classes could be the same EXACT playlist yet all seven classes could be totally different.  That is the beauty of Nia.  And with two masters leading the dance it wouldn’t matter.  BUT . . . the flyer does indicate all classes will have different play lists.

I hope you will take this opportunity.  Nia is always fun, but when you have the creator up in front of a room full of people who are there to dance, move, and have fun there is no way you can experience anything but MAGIC.

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

Pearls And The Realms, Part Of Nia Blue Belt Principle #3

Posted by terrepruitt on December 11, 2012

Nia Blue Belt Principle #3 – Awareness, Insight, Clarity – Pearls and the Realms, is an exciting principle.  I found it really exciting because there are things that Nia teachers are supposed to do in Nia class that I really wanted to learn to do better.  There is a particular way we are supposed to teach or more accurately there is a tool that we have available to us to use while we teach.  The “tool” is called a pearl.  When I go to other Nia classes I often find myself wanting to stop moving and just write down what the other teachers are saying.  I often find their verbiage, their wording for something to be just what the move is about and so I want to use that in my class.  Since I don’t REALLY want to stop dancing I repeat it in my head while I am dancing and sometimes I can even convince myself that I will remember what they said.  Sometimes I do remember and sometimes I don’t.  Sometimes I have a vague recollection that leads to a pearl of my own that works out fine.  These pearls are what we use to enhance the class.  They are words that allow the participant to connect to a move, the music, a feeling, a sensation, almost anything . . . . and this in turn allows for a better experience.  Part of the Nia Blue Belt Principle #3 – Awareness, Insight, Clarity, was a lesson on how to come up with pearls.  It was insight into where they can come from.

As a reminder, in these first posts about the Nia Blue Belt Principles I am just writing quick about what I initially got out of it.  I am just sharing and getting it down in print as a tool to help processes it.  This principle has a lot more to it than just assist with what to say and how to describe things in a Nia class.  As I said the principle is Awareness, Insight, Clarity, with a tag line of Pearls and the Realms.  And it is the pearls that I have been longing to learn more about.  So that is what I gleaned most about this principle.  As I go back and read the manual I am sure I will even get more.  As I continue to teach even more will be revealed.

Have I mentioned before that the manual is 276 pages?  Yeah.  It is intense.  It is a lot of information.  It is amazing.

Anyway . . . this principle gives us the place that the pearls come from.  It helps categorize them.  In knowing where they come from it is easier to allow them to come.  In the categories or realms a Nia teacher can decide to utilize pears from all realms.  To me this can help balance a class.An example of pearls we could use for each realm in a class would be:

Everybody sense your ankle.  This would be from the physical realm.
Everybody feel lonely.  This would be from the emotional realm.
Everybody imagine you are a dog.  This would be from the mental realm.
Everybody wiggle and jiggle.  This would be from the spirit realm.

I was so excited to learn the different type of pearls.  Part of my excitement came from confirming pearls don’t have to be physical and part of it came from realizing I did use pearls more than I thought.  I thought I used them a lot less, so it was nice to learn I use them, I just didn’t know it.

So the pearl portion of Nia Blue Belt Principle #3 – Awareness, Insight, Clarity was a great eye-opening.  And, of course, you really can’t have the pearls without awareness, insight, and clarity, right?  I didn’t explain that here, but it’s true.  This post jumped right to the middle.  I may or may not do a post explaining about the first part.  I really think I should leave somethings for you to learn when you do your Blue Belt Intensive.  ;-)

Do you get excited when you think you are not doing something you are supposed to be doing but you find out you are doing it?

Posted in Blue Belt, Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

It’s Nice To Hear Someone Agree With Agility

Posted by terrepruitt on October 18, 2012

I teach a Nia Class for the city of San Jose.  The city has it set up pretty cool in that instructors can have a day and a time at a specific community center that we can call “my” class and we can also teach other people’s classes as a substitute.  We have this forum where we post requests and needs.  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, ZumbaMany instructors have full time jobs and kids so they have other responsibilities that call them away from their regularly schedule class.  Plus there is always a cold, a serious illness, or a bump/bruise or strain.  This network of teachers allows us to live our lives and take care of ourselves when necessary.  It also helps expose our community to different types of workouts and different teachers.  I have shared before how at one point I was trying to make Nia be more like whatever it was I was subbing for.  If you haven’t read that post, I am sure you might be able to imagine how that turned out.  It made this Nia teacher very unhappy and I don’t think it was a great service for the attendees either.  One of the reasons I applied for the job with the city was so that I could share Nia with the community.  Recently I taught Nia as a substitute class for Zumba, and my thoughts on Zumba and agility were confirmed.

A few of the student came up afterwards to talk to me about Nia.  Some shared how they like it because it was gentle yet allowed them to work up a sweat and get a great workout.  One woman made me giddy because she said the same thing that I had just decided about Zumba.  It took me a while to get to this conclusion and she jumped to it her very first time.  She said that Nia is more complete.  She said that she loves Zumba, she does it three times a week, but the moves are not completed.  She said it was nice to be able to finish a move.  Nia allows you to move through the entire range of motion, through the entire range of the joint.  I loved that she was able to get that from one class.  I also love and appreciate that she can like both, Nia and Zumba.  They are both cardio dance exercise workouts, but they are different.  Seeming to always have to explain the two together, I am always thinking about it and just recently reached the agility conclusion. I explained in one of my posts how I feel Zumba seems to only move in one sensation.  Well, having gone to a training and experienced the Zumba Fitness Program I believe a Zumba class can move in all five, but it concentrates on agility and touches on the rest.  But they are in there if you know to look for them.

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 this student who was talking to me after class picked up on that fact that in Nia we move through all five sensations and Zumba focuses on one.  This is not to say that is bad, this is just again pointing out how they are different.  Also this is me sharing that it is not just other Nia teachers and my Nia students that think that, it is other people who are more familiar with Zumba than Nia.  This is just a happy confirmation post sharing that I felt I got it right when I explained Nia and Zumba in that way.  Yay.

Both Nia and Zumba are great fun.  I encourage you to do whatever it is that will get you up and moving!  If you decide what type of movement you want it can help you decide what you can do to get it.

Do you like to take different types of exercise classes?  Do you like to just stick to one type of class?

Posted in Nia, Zumba | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

South Bay Nia Jam

Posted by terrepruitt on August 7, 2012

Well, Palo Alto seems to be as close to as to what I consider the South Bay as we have gotten since I have been attending Nia.  I really want to have a Nia Jam in San Jose.  I am going to work on that for 2013.  The Nia Jam for San Francisco Bay Area Nia Association in the South Bay in 2012 was at a Jewish Community Center in Palo Alto.  As I have described before, a Nia Jam is a Nia class only longer with multiple teachers.  It is like a Nia class on steroids.  A typical Nia class is 60 minutes, a Nia Jam is usually 90 minutes.  In a Nia Jam there is a group of teachers who take turns teaching.  As with all Nia classes the Nia Jam had a focus and an intent.  The focus of this Nia Jam was Yin & Ying of Creative Play, with the intent of providing both a high energy experience and a quieter, more reflective experience as Nia can support either or both.  I have to be honest, I didn’t get a quiet, reflective experience out of this jam.  We were on fire!  The energy was so high it was tangible.  It was amazing!

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 I am so glad that the energy is always so high because I had taught my Saturday morning class in San Jose.  Then I stayed at the studio and took a class, then I raced over to Palo Alto to teach at the Jam.  The energy energized me!

There were six teachers who taught.  It is so fun to dance and be led by a variety of teachers.  It is a wonderful thing to be able to experience a song, a kata, that you know, in a different way.  While usually the basics are there, there is often a little nuance that the teacher adds to the song.  It could be just a sound that is not normally made, a word not usually spoken, or it could be the addition of a different step or the removal of a step, it could just be their way of cueing that makes it different.  Whatever the difference it is so invigorating to do what you know a little differently.  I also love doing the unknown.  I don’t know all of the Nia routines and I love to get to dance katas I don’t know.

At the same time a Nia Jam is perfect for someone new to Nia because they get to dance with many different teachers and experience different styles.  They also can witness the warmth of the Nia community.  New participants can also enjoy the astronomical energy that is present at Nia Jams.  They can also confirm that Nia students and Nia teachers do sweat as Nia is a moving grooving cardio dance exercise.  They can corroborate what I have been sharing — a great workout does not have to be done extremely fast and hard it can be done with movements of the whole body.

Monday in class my students were still talking about the Nia Jam.  It was THAT fun!  It was THAT energizing.  It was great!  I know Nia is a great workout.  I invite you to go to a class, one of mine (click for schedule) or one you find near you (click for worldwide listings), but I implore you to go to a Nia Jam.  If there is one not far from you, go.  You will enjoy it for all the reasons I mentioned above, for reasons I have not mentioned, and for reasons of your own.  Nia Jams are always fun and the Nia Jam for the South Bay on the Peninsula did not disappoint!

For more pictures go to: http://www.helpyouwell.com/nia-jams.html

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Always Looking At The Clock In A Nia Class

Posted by terrepruitt on July 24, 2012

In Nia we use the clock a lot.  We don’t actually USE the clock, but we use the idea of a clock face on the ground.  When we are moving and dancing we often times refer to the hours on the face of the clock to indicate where to put our feet or move our body.  I had mentioned this in my post about Katas.  I find that it works well when I am learning the routines.  I note the “o’clocks” on my bars.  I find it works well when sharing the moves in my Nia classes.  And I find that Nia students appreciate having a reference point.  It REALLY helps me when there is an actually clock in the room in my line of site.  I know that probably sounds silly because the reason we use a clock to assist in the dance is because it is something familiar and constant, but sometimes it just helps to be able to glance up and be able to say, “Step to one o’clock.”  I use the clock a lot.

Dance Exercies, Nia, Nia Campbell, Campbell Nia, Nia classes in Campbell, evening Nia, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, NiaOften times our stepping isn’t exactly on an hour.  Often times I feel as if it is BETWEEN the hours, say between one and two, but it is still a great reference point.  As with many of our moves in Nia it could be that we are stepping on the foot we have placed at a specific hour or it could be that we are pointing or tapping on the hour.  Using the hours of the clock as a reference can help prevent confusion when required to state which foot is being used.  Since we are moving to music one does not always have time to state, “Cross your left foot to the right diagonal and stop.”  And saying, “Left right diagonal” could be confusing, so it is nice to have a set “direction” by using the hours on a clock.  So I can say, “Left at 1:00″ and that is even more clear than saying either one of the instructions previously stated.  It is clear that the left foot is to cross over and land at 1:00.

Also it seems to even work better than just saying the directional left and right.  If I were to say, “Put your left foot out” I have not actually indicated WHERE to put your left foot, but when I say, “Left to 9:00″ it is clear where the left foot should go when it goes “out”.  Another example is a bow, it could be executed with the leg directly behind or crossed back so again the clock adds a greater level of instruction.

Of course, the participants in a dance exercise class are watching the instructor but giving them verbal instructions allows them to do it in their own body’s way instead of just trying to do it the exact way the teacher’s body is doing it.  Some people might have a LARGE clock face on the ground on which they are dancing and other’s might have a smaller one.  It all depends on where they leg reaches, but at least they know what direction.

In Nia there are even moves that refer to the clock.  Within Nia’s 52 moves we have a “slow clock” and a “fast clock“. So as I said we use the clock or at least the idea of a clock a lot in a Nia class.

Makes Nia sounds easy, huh?  It is.  And it is fun.  Find a class near you nianow.com or check out my Nia class schedule on my website (www.HelpYouWell.com).

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