Posts Tagged ‘stability’
Posted by terrepruitt on May 29, 2014
Aaaahhhh! I did it again. I do it all the time. I see things on Facebook that I want to look at but I don’t have time or when I see it is it not the right time to look at it so I open it in another window. Then I can watch it, read it, do it (whatever) days later. But then I forget who posted it. This is a Nia video so I know that one of my Nia friends posted it. It took me days to get around to watching it. Then once I did watch it I was soooo disappointed. It is a video of Carlos Rosas (NKA Carlos Aya-Rosas) at a conference talking about the 5 Sensations of Nia. As he is talking I start looking at the time left and I keep thinking, he’s not going to make it. I kept HOPING he would, but I kept thinking, he is not going to make it. He didn’t. He was halfway through (or so it seemed) his talk about Mobility when the video stopped. Sad face. That is why I was disappointed. I was sad because we don’t get to hear all five sensations. But . . . watching the ones he did get through are well worth it. It is just a bummer that we didn’t get information on all five.
I am not sure what year it is, but you will see that they are being referred to as Debbie and Carlos Rosas. Which I always thought that eventually they were referred to as Debbie Rosas and Carlos Rosas. But that is not the point of this post or the video I was just trying to see if I could have an idea of what year it was, but again . . . not that important because the information is tremendous.
The information is very helpful no matter when it was recorded. Carlos first walks you through some things you can sense. He connects them to the 5 Sensations. If you’ve read a few of my posts about Nia you might be familiar with my belief that Nia takes everyday things you are familiar with and probably aware of and connects it to Nia ideas. If you watch this you can get an example of them doing that in the time from 2:45 to 7:00.
After the initial connection to the five sensations, the first sensation Carlos defines is Flexibility. He describes it as energy moving out. So not just stretching, but energy moving out. Then he talks about Agility. He describes that as a quick start stop. He uses the adjective “explode”. This is a very entertaining part of the video. Carlos is a very funny speaker. Then he gets a few minutes into a mobility. He describes that as continuous movement. He talks you through a bit of it, then the video stops.
Even though we only get to see two sensations and a portion of mobility it is still great information. I am not giving you too many details because I want you to watch it. It is so much better from the creator than from me just typing what he is saying.
This was posted by Nia, in addition to watching this video you can go to the Nia Channel on Youtube (click here) and see other videos they have posted. Also, you can go to NiaNow.com and watch recordings of classes. From the home page scroll through the pages and you will find videos of Nia classes. You can dance right along with Debbie and other trainers!
I invite you to watch the video and participate with his exercises to connect you with the sensation of Flexibility, Agility, Mobility, Stability, and Strength (this is the first portion I mentioned). Then stick with it for even more connection to Flexibility and Agility.
Well, what do you think?
Posted in Nia | Tagged: agility, and Strength", Carlos Aya Rosas, Carlos Rosas, dance video, Dance Workout, Debbie Rosas, Facebook, FAMSS, Five Sensations of Nia, flexibility, Inner Idea, Mobility, Nia, Nia Channel, Nia class, Nia Dance, Nia trainers, Nia workout, NiaNow.com, stability, Youtube | Leave a Comment »
Posted by terrepruitt on November 14, 2013
Nia is a cardio dance exercise that I teach. It is more than that, but that is one way to describe it. One of the ways it is more than that, is, it is a practice. If you chose to treat it like a practice, as one might treat yoga as a practice, one would become aware of Nia’s 52 Moves. There are 52 moves that get choreographed into the Nia Routines. One of the moves is Traveling in Directions. This is a great move for many reasons.
One reason Traveling in Directions is great is because it is very easy. Another reason it is great is because it is very adaptable and can be used in almost every song and in every routine. The main way to travel in a direction is to simply walk. Using the Heel Lead technique just walk forward, then change the direction you are walking, then change the direction, etc. With the simplest of forms you look where you want to go before you move in that direction. So before your feet actually start going a different direction — LOOK. There is a little bit of thinking involved because we look before we go. Allow your arms to move freely. Step confidently in whichever direction you choose to look. Move your body as a whole.
The Nia Technique book states: “Practicing Traveling in Directions keeps your body agile for moving through space in all directions, able to change direction with ease.”
When we use this move in our routines we have a lot of fun playing with it. The move really is as easy as stated, the fun comes when changing directions quickly. You can be the leader of your own movement or sometimes you are being directed by the teacher. This makes agility one of the Nia sensations we practice with this move. Moving one way then quickly stopping and going another way. Stopping, changing, starting. Varying the speed at times will allow for additional Nia sensations such as strength and stability to come into play.
When Traveling in Directions on your own you become aware of the direction you want to go, then you look, then you go. As I said, there are times when you might be listening to the direction of the teacher, which would still mean you would need to become aware of the direction you want to go, but when being told where to go your body’s reaction is quicker. There is a quick look then a move in that direction. Less thought is involved for you as the participant because someone else thought of the direction you were going to go.
Often when this move is done in a class, quick thinking, quick moving, and quick reacting are additional skills that receive attention because we are dancing with others on the floor so we might have to switch our trajectory quickly to avoid a dance floor collision.
Modifications of the traveling can be done by going backwards or sinking low or even rising high. So many ways to travel in directions. All of them are great opportunities to try out the Nia Sensations, the more you do, the more ways you move your body. If you want you can even skip. Skipping in different directions adds a new dimension to the move.
Sometimes this move is choreographed into the Nia routine with specifics and sometimes is allowed more of a Free Dance. However it is added to the Nia workout it is a wonderful way to dance.
How would you Traveling in Directions to your current favorite song?
Posted in 52 Moves (of Nia), Nia | Tagged: body agile, cardio dance exercise, dance class, dance floor, Free Dance, Heel lead, Nia, Nia choreography, Nia class, Nia participant, Nia routines, Nia sensations, Nia Teacher, Nia workout, Nia's 52 Moves, Practice, stability, strength, The Nia Technique book, Traveling in Directions, Yoga, yoga teacher | 2 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on September 14, 2013
In Nia we have the five sensations that we dance and move with. I always feel that one of them is a personal favorite of one of the co-founders of The Nia Technique. I think that Debbie Rosas really loves stability. I imagine she loves them all because she does a superb job of ensuring they are all included in a each Nia Routine, but sometimes I just get this feeling that practicing balance is her favorite. It could be because sometimes stability, being balanced, requires flexibility and/or agility and/or mobility and/or strength. So you can practice and play with all of the five sensations when practicing balance. In yoga there is at least three of the five sensations we experience in Nia. In yoga there is flexibility and/or strength and/or stability/balance. In the Gentle Yoga class I am teaching I really like to put a huge emphasis on balance. I think balance is very important and yoga is a great way to practice it. There are many poses in yoga that are balance poses. Not all of them are standing poses.
One pose I really like to use for enhancing balance is the Gate pose. This pose is a kneeling pose, somewhat.
In the gentle yoga class we start on our knees. Up off our calves, as in we are not sitting on our legs. Then we lean forward and over to one side, say the left. We lean forward to the left placing both our hands on the ground in front of the left knee. Then we swing our right leg out so it is pointed out to the side. The heel of the right foot is aligned with the left knee or slightly in front. The right foot is flat on the ground and the toes are pointed away from the body. We then lift up so we are kneeling on our left leg with our right leg posed out to the right of our body. Then the left arm comes up reaching straight over the head. Palm towards the right. The right hand is palm up resting on the right thigh. If stability and balance is achieved then those that are comfortable lean over to the right, allowing the right hand to rest lower on the leg, at the shin, not the knee. If comfortable we turn the head to gaze past our left arm. All the while the crown of the head is moving away from our body and the tail is moving in the opposite direction. We are lengthening our spine. The shoulders are being drawn back and down. Even though one arm is up we still keep the space between the ear and the shoulder open and large. The same with the side we are leaning towards.
Whether you are staying up right or leaning over to the side, keep your body from leaning forward. Stay in the pose for a few breaths. After you perform this pose on one side, do the other.
Parighasana, the Gate pose, is a nice way to pursue balance. The foot that is out can be adjusted to a parallel (to the body) position if that allows it to be more comfortable or stable. Or the foot can be lifted leaving just the heel on the ground. The depth of the side bend is always a point that can be adjusted for the individual’s needs at the moment.
I love all the poses in yoga that allow for balance practice. I think this is a great post with which to practice balance.
Are you familiar with the Gate pose? Do you like this pose?
Posted in PiYo/Pilates/Yoga | Tagged: balance, co-founders of Nia, dance, Debbie Rosas, enhanced balance, FAMSS, Gate pose, gentle yoga, Nia, Nia Dance, Nia routines, Nia's Five Sensations, Parighasana, stability, The Nia Technique, Yoga, Yoga class | 2 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on July 9, 2013
I am very shocked and somewhat embarrassed that I have had this blog for over four years and I have never written a post explaining PiYo™. PiYo is a combination of Pilates (Pi) and Yoga (Yo), brought to us by Chalene Johnson. Chalene is the creator of Turbo Jam®, Turbo Kick®, TurboFire®, Hip Hop Hustle®, and ChaLEAN Extreme®. These programs are put out by either Beachbody or her company, Powder Blue Productions. With PiYo the idea is to combine the two mind/body practices in order to appeal to a large audience. Pilates and yoga are somewhat similar to begin with, both have a component of connecting the mind and the body in conscious movement. Both have ideals on breathing and breath. Both are a way to improve flexibility, stability, strength, and balance. Depending on which type of yoga practice there could be agility and mobility involved as in Pilates. Now this might sound familiar if you know about Nia. In Nia we have the five sensations flexibility, agility, mobility, strength, and stability (FAMSS) which we play with in our dance. In PiYo the same sensations can be experienced. The manual states: “PiYo is considered a ‘Western’ approach to the practices of mind/body fitness.”
I believe that many people think yoga has been “Westernized”. Since there are so many types of yoga there might not always be a spirituality in the yoga class or chanting, meditating, or even the Sanskrit terminology. That is true with a PiYo class. It is more about the physical with an awareness.
PiYo combines yoga breathing and Pilates breathing. In general a yoga pose is done with yoga breathing and a Pilates exercise is done with Pilates breathing. Of course, students are encouraged to breath in a way that is comfortable to them and that works with their individual body, the aforementioned is just a general guide.
The PiYo class follows the tried and true module of a typical exercise class. There is a section for warming up, a section for general strength and balance, a section with more of a focus specific area of the body (say a core, upper body, or lower body), then a cool down and relaxation section. While yoga poses could meet all the requirement of each section and Pilates exercises could also, it is often the case that each section will have a majority of one or the other. Although, you might be like me and think that there is such a huge cross over it is difficult with some moves to claim it is only a yoga move or only a Pilates move. While I am certain the move did originate from one or the other practice specifically it seems as though currently there is a huge cross over. That is one reason why I think Pilates and yoga marry ups so well. They can be considered very similar.
So throughout the class there will be yoga poses and Pilates exercises. It is up to the instructor and the make-up of the class as to whether the yoga poses will be held for a measured amount of time or done in a flow. No matter which is chosen it will be a sequences of poses. Whereas the Pilates exercises are done in repetition. Generally sequences of repetitions.
A PiYo class is allowed the freedom of design. As mentioned there is a class format, but then the way it is carried out is dependent on the instructor and students. The consistence of a PiYo class is that it is for the body and the mind using both yoga poses and Pilates moves.
Do you practice yoga? Do you practice Pilates?
Posted in PiYo/Pilates/Yoga | Tagged: agility, balance, Beachbody, ChaLEAN Extreme, Chalene Johnson, chanting, conscious movement, exercise programs, flexibility, Hip Hop Hustle, meditating, mind/body fitness, mind/body practices, Mobility, Nia, Nia class, Nia Dance, Nia five sensations, Pilates, PiYo class, PiYo manual, PiYo/Pilates/Yoga, Powder Blue, Sanskrit terminology, spirituality, stability, strength, Turbo Jam, TurboFire, TurboKick, types of yoga, Western approach, Yoga, Yoga class, Yoga Pose | 2 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on August 30, 2012
Now, I know that I’ve been doing the knee sweep a lot longer than I have been doing Nia. So it is true that Nia’s 52 moves are not necessarily unique to Nia, but they are part of the core of Nia. You will find a large portion of Nia’s 52 moves in every routine. There are correct ways to do them, but Nia allows for the body’s way and also, I believe Nia allows for the move to be incorporated into the dance. For instance, The Nia Technique book states that the starting position for a knee sweep is the sumo stance. I am sure that I have done a knee sweep from a sumo stance at one time, but the first dance that pops into my head where we do the knee sweep it is not from a sumo position. But the by the book (oh, yeah, that reminds me, “BUY THE BOOK!” :-) ), anyway, the by-the-book version of the knee sweep starts from a sumo position, complete with arms in ready position and everything. Then the body rises as you come up on one leg bringing the other leg up with a bent knee. The knee crosses the midline of the body, the opposite hand “pushes” the knee out. The knee swings out so the pelvis is open. Then the leg comes down and the foot lands on the earth. That is the knee sweep of Nia’s 52 moves.
The book does not indicate that when your foot comes down it is in the toes-to-the-front position, but that is how I teach it. I don’t want my students landing on their foot with their knee out to the side. If we are just doing knee sweeps as an exercise, maybe I would have them do that, because they would be aware of the torque in their hip, but probably not.
When I was first doing this move in Nia I was trying to do it as the book shows and as many of the people on the Nia instructional DVDs do and as the instructor does (whether it be Debbie Rosas or Carlos AyaRosas). And that was with the knee out to the side very wide. REALLY opening the pelvis. But when I did that I noticed a “something” – I don’t know what it was, but it was something – in my lower back. So I decided that opening my hip that wide and having my leg out that far was not MY body’s way, so I do not do that. I share with my students that I found the comfortable spot to be about as far as my forearms can reach. I “glue” my elbows to my sides and hold my forearms out to the side. As far as they can go is as far as I allow my knee to go. That is what works for me.
Some of the time that we are doing the knee sweep it is at the end of a “up-two-three-four (knee sweep), back-two-three-four (knee sweep)”. So that would not allow for the sumo position to be the start. Other times we are standing upright. As I said, I am sure I have done it from the sumo position because I bet it is in a routine I am not thinking of. But the ones I am thinking of it is done from a walking or standing position.
The amazing thing about the knee sweep is that it calls for the knee to cross the midline of the body. So that means that if you were doing a left knee sweep (with your left leg) your left knee would enter into the right hemisphere of your body. If you were doing a right knee sweep (with your right leg) your right knee would enter into the right hemisphere of your body. It is a great thing when your limbs cross the midline. It helps stimulate the brain. So there is a reason in many exercise routines and cardio classes that we have you do “cross overs”.
The knee sweep is one of those moves that requires balance. Since at one point you are standing on one leg, you will be able to improve your balance or practice what you have. Also the moving of the leg helps with that stability. Standing on one leg helps with strength and opening the hip helps with mobility and flexibility. The knee sweep of Nia’s 52 moves does a body and brain good!
Are you familiar with this move? Have you done it before in your exercise class? Did you give it a try?
Posted in 52 Moves (of Nia), Nia | Tagged: Cardio classes, cardio dance class, Carlos AyaRosas, cross the midline of the body, dance, Debbie Rosas, exercise routines, flexibility, improve balance, Knee Sweep, Mobility, my body's way, Nia, Nia instructional DVDs, Nia routine, Nia students, Nia's 52 Moves, stability, strength, Sumo Stance, the Nia Technique books | Leave a Comment »
Posted by terrepruitt on August 28, 2012
My husband and I used to dance. We danced “Country Western”, we did the two step, the cha-cha, the waltz, and the west coast swing. We liked to dance. I sometimes would fake it though. Yeah, I would. We would go to a lesson and they would show us a move. We would practice it during the lesson then usually there was a dance party after. We would join the party. My husband would always DO THE MOVE WE JUST LEARNED. I would say, “Ack! You’re doing the move we just learned!” And he would look at me with a look that said to me, “Of course, Silly Woman, that is why we are here. To learn stuff and then actually DO IT.” But for me the time spent in the lesson was never enough to actually learn it. Even though the leader’s part is much more difficult than the follower’s, I still couldn’t get it in one lesson. So a lot of the times I would fake it. And by fake it I mean, that if you were to look at my feet and KNOW where there were supposed to be, you would know my feet were not correct. I could move in a way that if you were just casually looking you would think I was doing it right. I would always make sure I was facing the right direction so you wouldn’t really know my feet were not doing the move correctly unless you knew the move yourself! Since most people don’t stare at your feet the entire time I often got away with it. I was good at faking it. Faking it was easy in the fast songs.
Eventually I would learn the move correctly, but there were some moves that took me a long time to get. Then somewhere along the way we decided to compete. I mean, competing really is the only way to know if you are really improving and to spend all that money on lessons and not improve can be a silly thing. So we decided to compete. Do you know what that meant? No more faking it. I mean the whole point of competition is to have someone look at you and judge — among other things — your feet. So I had to stop faking it.
I am learning a lot as I sub for different exercise classes. I recently subbed a class and I was reminded of the faking it. It is easy to fake it in some classes. Let’s say Zumba for example, I’ve posted before about how Zumba is all agility (I have since learned otherwise, but I will reflect on that in a post at a later time). Zumba is the fast start and stop. Move stop the move and move the other direction, move stop, move stop. The full range of motion is usually not achieved, you are moving to another move before you really get to finish the first one. Start, stop, start, stop, start stop. It is easy to fake. The fast dances were always easy for me to fake. The good thing about faking it is you are still moving and that is good in a sense. Even if you are not doing the move correctly you are moving and burning calories and often it is so fast the casually observer or someone standing next to you is not going to notice. I think this is one of the things that people like about Zumba . . . you are moving and dancing even when you are faking it.
It is the slow dances that are difficult. With Nia it is not as easy to fake. With Zumba a move could be hopping from one leg to the other. With Nia we might actually balance on one leg. No speed to it, just lifting one leg off the ground and standing on one leg. Strength and stability. No faking. I always invite participants to use a chair, a wall, the barre, or even their other foot, but either way you cannot FAKE standing on one leg. Sadly, I think for some, not being able to fake it keeps them from joining in the joy of Nia. The judgment from themselves is so great that they can’t let go and just do what they can because what they can do is not blurred by the start and the stop. What they can’t do is not blurred by speed. And they don’t give themselves the chance to learn how to do the moves. They don’t allow themselves the time to get the muscles in a condition where they can move slow and controlled. Faking it is easy, it is actually doing a move slow, controlled, and correctly where the difficulty comes in.
When I take a Zumba class I know I fake it often because I don’t know the move so I concentrate on being at the right place and/or facing the right direction at the right time. Eventually I get the moves . . . well, most of the time.
I know this is my opinion, I don’t really KNOW, but it is coming from a place of judgment based on some things I have seen and heard. You know I am always trying to figure out the differences between Zumba and Nia and why people like them. And recently this was a thought because of something I heard and observed . . . the speed, the faking, the judgment.
Do you fake until you make it in your exercise class?
Posted in Nia | Tagged: agility, balance, cha-cha, Country Western Dancing, dance party, exercise classes, Nia exercise, stability, two step, waltz, west coast swing, Zumba, Zumba classes, Zumba exercise, Zumba party Nia class | 2 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on June 30, 2012
I teach Nia. I have been teaching Nia for three and a half years. Not as many people who I talk to have heard of Nia as have heard of Zumba so I am constantly being asked the difference between Nia and Zumba. Since I am often asked I am often thinking about them and comparing them. First, they are actually the same in that music is played and participants dance to it. Second, in both the instructor leads the participants through the various dance moves. Third, participants of both claim they are both fun. One difference is Nia is an experience in five sensations, Zumba seems to concentrate on one.
The experience is such a big part of Nia we actually call them the five sensations of Nia. I have posted about them before (FAMSS). They are the sensation of flexibility, of agility, of mobility, of strength, and of stability. In a Nia class your body will move in a way that allows you to sense the energy moving out and away. You will bend and stretch to play with flexibility, either retaining what you have or improving upon it. There are moves in the routines that require the start and the stop. The movement that is agility could be done with our feet, our arms, our hands, our bodies, our heads or a combination of body parts but we sense the start and the stop. With every routine there is a lot of mobility, some routines have more than others, but all of them that I have experienced have a lot. With mobility it is just the same as agility in that it could be a body part that is moving or our whole body. Whatever the case there is a lot of movement from each joint that helps create a healthy joint by allowing the fluid to move to it and within it. Then we also play with strength. We might squeeze our muscles sensing the energy moving in as if the bones are being hugged by the muscles. We might do squats or sit-ups, punches and/or kicks, but there is time where we play with strength. I say Nia is very big on balance because we do many moves that requires us to be stable. Many of our moves are balancing on one leg, could be a kick, could be a stance, but it requires stability. Moving from one move to the next often requires us to call upon our stability. In a Nia routine we experience all of these sensations. I’ve reached the conclusion that Zumba is primarily agility.
In Zumba the moves are always fast. So it is a constant state of start and stop. The only sensation I sense while doing Zumba is agility. Fast start, fast stop . . . . even when there is a stretch where your muscles are yearning for a second to move to their fullest length, it is a fast stretch that does not allow for the muscle to be fully stretched. Doing a full hour of agility is not a bad thing at all. It can be fun and it can produce a lot of sweat. And many of us are programmed to think that sweat equals a good workout. I think that if you are adding Zumba to a stretching program that has some balance practice in it that is great.
I am also a believer that there are a lot of things that compliment Nia too. I actually think that if you like Nia and Zumba and you are able to do both that is a nice combination. You get two different types of cardio. One that is a workout in the sensation of agility and one that can move you through more use of the entire body to get that heart pumping.
I really believe that whatever gets you moving is GREAT. I think that you have to like what you do in order to make it a constant in your life. So Zumba, Nia, Jazzercise, U-Jam, yoga, kickboxing, bootcamp, weight training, whatever works for you is great. Do what you will do! That is the key!
It is that I am always asked about the difference between Zumba and Nia that I am always thinking about it and this was my latest thought after I did a Zumba class. I think I posted before about how I am left wanting to extend and finish my moves in Zumba and it dawned on me that it is the sensation of agility that is predominant in Zumba. Some Zumba classes I have attended do take a song to stretch at the end, but not all of them. So I guess it depends on the instructor. Nia instructors are encouraged to infuse their classes and the routines with their personalities, so I am sure that every Nia class has a few differences too.
Both Nia and Zumba are great cardio workouts. It just depends on what you want to do during your workout and what you want to get out of it. Do what you will do!
So, what is it that you do?
Posted in Nia, Working Out | Tagged: agility, bootcamp, cardio dance, cardio workout, dance exercise, FAMSS, five sensations, flexibility, Jazzercise, kickboxing, Mobility, Nia, Nia Classes, Nia instructor, Nia Moves, Nia participants, Nia routines, Nia Teacher, Nia vs Zumba, stability, strength, U-Jam, Ujam, weight training, Yoga, Zumba, Zumba classes, Zumba instructor, Zumba participants, Zumba routines | 11 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on February 24, 2011
In Nia classes we have the opportunity to experience flexibility AND mobility AND agility AND strength AND stability. Depending on the starting point we can either be increasing or maintaining. I also believe it is good for people to participate in a weight training program. I believe it is good to use weights to keep strength or build strength. I think having muscle strength in important. Most people do not have to concern themselves about getting big and bulking up. I have heard women say they don’t lift weights because they don’t want to do either of those things.
First of all, as a reminder, weights are not the only way to build strength, any type of resistance can work muscles. Depending on your starting point different things can be used, for example body weight alone without the use of weights is a great place to start. The use of resistance bands or tubing can be a great way to work muscles without having to deal with storing the weights. Working with weights (resistance) is a great way to stave off the aging process.
I think it might help people who are afraid of building big muscles to know how it happens. Basically if you want to build big muscles you have to work really, really, really hard at it. It doesn’t happen from going to the gym two or three times a week doing a few exercises at 8 repetitions each. Hypertrophy (muscles getting bigger) occurs when heavy weights are lifted in a specific way . . . more than the average person is going to lift (75% to 85% of what you can absolutely lift), more exercises than the average person takes time for, and with less rest time than most people take in the gym. It really takes work and concentration. It is very stressful on the body and people often don’t like to be sore. The type of lifting required to cause hypertrophy is not something the average woman is going to do. Doing 8 to 12 repetitions of a few exercise two or three times a week will enable your muscles to stay toned or it might even build some strength, but it will not make the muscles really big. If you want to increase your strength add more resistance or more reps.
What could actually happen if you start working with weights is the shape of the muscle might adjust and it you might think it is bigger because you actually start sensing it. I would recommend you measure your limbs with a flexible tape measure before you start a weight regimen. After a couple of weeks measure again, see if there is actually an increase in size. I’ll be waiting to hear . . . .
Posted in Training and Exercise | Tagged: agility, anti aging, flexibility, hypertrophy, Mobility, muscle building, muscle tone, muscle toned, Nia, Nia Classes, resistance training, stability, strength, strength building, strength training, weight training | 5 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on May 29, 2010
I am always a little taken off guard when someone comes to me before Nia class and tells me with shock that they were sore (after the last Nia class). I recently came to the realization that these people who are shocked–and maybe a bit offended–are shocked because they didn’t realize they are exercising in Nia. They didn’t realize what a great workout they received. They certainly weren’t aware that they were using muscles they may not have used in a long time OR that they may not have used in that way. Nia is a vacation from normal exercise, but it IS exercise.
Nia is a cardio dance exercise class so there is ample opportunity to move with an intensity that will get your heart rate up. Some people sweat, some people don’t. Everyone does Nia differently. EveryBODY has different needs. Needs can change from class to class. Nia teaches to listen to your body and to learn to give it what it needs.
Nia is a form of movement. It is a mixture of nine different movement forms. The mixture includes actual movements from some of these forms and elements and ideas from these forms. But it is not these forms. In other words if you attend a Nia class you will not be practicing yoga, tai chi, or the other martial arts but we might do some moves from some of those forms or we might use the ideas from them.
With the availability of so many moves and concepts we are able to move in Nia the way the body was designed to move. We can play in the different planes, moving up and down and work on the ground. Nia allows us to work on flexibility, agility, mobility, strength, and stability.
All of this motion and action is sometimes different from what your body might be used to doing. Even though the movements are moves the body was actually designed to do, some of them you might not do in your everyday life, for instance rotating and opening the joints. When you move your body after not moving it at all or move it in a different way than it is accustomed to moving there is a possibility that you will experience soreness or DOMS.
It could be that the muscles are sore or it could be that there is awareness of the joints because the tissues or muscles that make up the joints are strengthening. While doing Nia we encourage people to try all the moves and experience them, but to tweak them so that they are comfortable to the body. Since we invite participants to sense Joy during the workout they might walk away not realizing that there could be some soreness after. Nia is also non-impact, but it can be intense so sometimes people are amazed that they sweat. It IS a workout after all.
Not everyone likes to sense the soreness that might accompany a good workout. I like it, I appreciate it because I know that it means I did something good for my body. It is ok for a body to be a little sore, it means that it is adapting to change. If the body is sore because it has not moved then it is good to have it adapt to the change of movement. If you are one that does not like to feel the effects of change on your body, then while in a Nia class you can make your movements smaller. If you don’t mind a little change then keep playing in all the levels. Nia allows for which ever path you chose and whatever you chose is up to you, I just wanted to help you understand so you can be aware of what might be happening and make an informed and mindful choice. It is my pleasure to be your travel guide and enable Nia to feel like a vacation.
I also have Tips for a Pleasurable Nia Experience and Tips for Moving Nia.
Are you ready for a relaxing yet exciting journey?
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