Posts Tagged ‘Yoga’
Posted by terrepruitt on May 4, 2013
The Sun Salutation is a sequence of asanas. I have not yet included it in any of my Nia classes, but I am thinking about doing so. In general modern day usage “asana” is what people call a yoga pose. So the Sun Salutation is a sequence of yoga poses. Now, if you look up Sun Salutation on the internet you will find a lot of variations. There are certain asanas that you will consistently find in all of them, but then not all of the Sun Salutations will include the same EXACT ones. I’ve seen anywhere from 9 to 13 poses in a single salutation. Since yoga is considered a practice associated with religion, a meditation, a prayer, a movement form, and/or a straight out exercise it makes sense that there are so many difference ways to do the Sun Salutation. If you are chosing to do the movement as a form of worship it might have different movements than if you are doing it to get a specific physical benefit. Most of the instructions on how to do it agree that the movements are based on breath. Inhale here, exhale there. I have decided on a combination of what I have been trained with, what I have practiced in classes, what I practice at home, several applications, and things I have learned along the way. I have decided on thirteen movements. I move using the right leg through 11 asanas, then through them again using the left leg. Two of the poses making the sequence 13 are only used only in very beginning and the end.
I start in Anjali mudra then go to the
Mountain Pose, then arms move out and up into an
Upward Salute, then I swan dive into a
Forward Bend, up into a
Standing Half Forward Bend, then I place the left leg back into a
lunge then the right leg back into a
plank then I move down onto knees into
knees, chest, chin/Ashtanga Namaskara or chaturanga up into
cobra, then I push back into
downward dog, I stay here longer than any other pose. I breath. Then I bring my right leg forward, so I am in a
lunge, then I bring my left leg forward then I
forward bend, then I come up a little into
Standing Half Forward Bend then lift my arms out and up as I rise into an
Upward Salute which I consider the start of the right sun salutation. I go through the sequences again this time place my right leg back into the lunge. When it is time to lunge again, I bring my left leg forward.
I find that as I move through the salutation, I like to change my Upward Salutes into more of a little back bend. Only bending back as I warm up and it feels good.
Since this is my Sun Salutation, and I am not worshiping the sun . . . in fact I don’t even think of the sun at all, I just do it my way. I do it in the way I feel like doing it that day. Sometimes I time it with my breath inhaling on this move and exhaling on that move, sometimes I stay in each pose longer and while I am aware of my breath my movements are not dictated by it. I do somewhat feel that is WAAAAAY contrary to the way it is “supposed” to be done, but then again it is MY movement. It is MY practice. It is MY meditation. So I do it the way MY body feels like doing it that day. I don’t usually decide how I am going to do it when I begin, I just begin and however I seem to move is how I do it that day at that time. Sometimes I even time it to the music I am listening too. Sometimes, unfortunately, I am in a hurry and I just want to get a few in so I do them. It all depends. That is why I think it is nice because YOU can do it how you want to do it to match the reason you are doing it. After doing at least six, I end with the Mountain Post and the Anjali mudra.
Do you do a version of the Sun Salutation? What asanas do you include in your salute?
Posted in Training and Exercise | Tagged: asanas, chaturanga, chest, chin, cobra, downward dog, Forward bend, knees, lunge, Mountain pose, Nia, Nia Classes, plank, sequence of yoga pose, Standing half foward bend, Sun Salutation, Upward Salute, Yoga, Yoga Pose | 2 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on April 28, 2013
Wow. I just noticed that there are only three days (if you include today) left of the multiple planks. Three planks a day every day for 30 days. I missed three days. Well, I have three days left to make sure I get all three in.
This morning I took a yoga class at the studio where I teach Nia twice a week. This week is Bay Area Dance Week and so the class I took was free. It was nice to get my mat out and do some poses. I don’t use my mat at home, I just do it on the carpet.
There are a lot of free classes this week so you might want to check it out. You can see a schedule of free classes in my post, Free Nia, Zumba, Belly Dance, Yoga, and More.
So I am going to go do my three planks. Have you done yours yet?
Posted in Planking | Tagged: Bay Area Dance Week, dance studio, Free Belly Dance, Free classes, Free Nia, Free Zumba, Multiple planks in a day challenge, Nia, Nia San Jose, planking, planks, San Jose Nia, Yoga, Zumba | Leave a Comment »
Posted by terrepruitt on April 25, 2013
Every year the studio in San Jose where I teach Nia Class on Monday mornings and Wednesday mornings participates in the celebration of National Dance week. This year the “week” is actually ten days, from Friday, April 26, 2013 through Sunday, May 5, 2013. This is the 15th year of Bay Area Dance Week, and the 32nd year in which there has been a National Dance Week coalition. BayAreaDance.org states:
“National Dance Week was founded in 1981 to increase awareness of dance and its contributions to our national culture. The first Bay Area Dance Week (BADW) festival grew out of a public dialogue in 1998, when dance artists, administrators, and organizations came together to explore how best to spotlight Bay Area dance during National Dance Week.“
The studio I rent from rents to different instructors who teach a variety of fitness classes and dances. Each instructor can choose to participate in Bay Area Dance Week, by offering free classes.
Bay Area Dance Week at the studio in San Jose starts Saturday, April 27th.
Saturday, April 27, 2013:
12:00 noon – 1:15 pm: Bellydance Essentials – Courtney
Sunday, April 28, 2013:
9:00 am – 10:15 am: Morning Flow Yoga – Eme
Monday, April 29, 2013:
9:00 am – 10:00 am: Nia – Terre (free to NEW Students)
6:00 pm – 7:00 pm: Zumba – Lili
7:00 pm – 8:00 pm: Egyptian Bellydance. All Levels – Hala
8:00 pm – 9:00 pm: Egyptian Bellydance Technique. Int/Adv – Hala
Tuesday, April 30, 2013:
5:30 pm – 6:30 pm: Drills & Performance Skills – Michelle
6:30 pm – 7:30 pm:
Bellydance Level 1 (4.27.13 changed) Fan Veil Choreography – Natika
7:30 pm – 8:30 pm: Tribal Fusion Technique & Choreography – Natika
8:30 pm – 9:30 pm: Turkish Bellydance – Natika
Wednesday, May 1, 2013:
9:00 am – 10:00 am: Nia – Terre (free to NEW Students)
6:00 pm – 7:00 pm: Bellydance – Setareh
7:00 pm – 8:30 pm: Hala Dance Company Rehearsal – Hala
Friday, May 3, 2013:
8:00 pm – 9:15 pm: Bellydance Cardio and Combos – Jill
Saturday, May 4, 2013:
9:30 am – 10:30 am: Bellydance Basics – Amanda
10:30 am – 12 noon: Bellydance and Beyond – Amanda
12 noon – 1:15 pm: Bellydance Essentials – Courtney
Sunday, May 5, 2013:
10:30 am – 11:30 am: The Art of Bellydance – Jizan
In regards to classes at the studio, classes not listed are not open to free drop-ins.
This is the schedule at the time of the writing. Sometimes things change so it is always good to check with the studio and/or instructor to verify class times and participation.
Remember it is National Dance Week so there are free classes all over the United States. I bet there is a class that you have always wanted to take, but have not yet got around to it. So check with the instructor of that class or call the venue to see if they are offering free classes.
The San Francisco Bay Area is beginning the week with a celebration dance on Friday in Union Square Park in San Francisco at noon. The closing event is a Planetary Dance led by Anna Halprin on Sunday, May 5th at 2:00 in Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco. You can check for free classes in the Bay Area at BayAreaDance.org. But even if it is not listed on the site check in with the person teaching it or the place it is being taught. They might be participating but maybe didn’t get on the site. So don’t be shy get out and dance.
What classes, in ADDITION to Nia, are you going to take?
Posted in Misc | Tagged: Nia, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Zumba, Yoga, Nia Classes, San Jose Zumba, Free classes, National Dance Week, Belly Dance, San Francisco, dance classes, San Francisco Bay Area Nia, SF Bay Nia, Bay Area Dance Week, Anna Halprin, Tribal Fusion, fitness classes, BADW, Studio in San Jose, Free San Jose Classes, BayAreaDance.org, Bellydance, Egyptian Bellydance, Turkish Bellydance, Hala Dance Company, Planetary Dance, Fan Veil Choreography | Leave a Comment »
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.
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: 52 Nia Moves, Bay Area, Carlos AyaRosas, Carlos Rosas, celebrities, country western dance, dance, Debbie Rosas, Kevin VerEecke, master teachers, motor-cycle race, Nia, Nia Dance, Nia Headquarters, Nia instructors, Nia Intensives, Nia routines, Nia San Jose, Nia teachers, Pilates, play tennis, Practice, San Francisco Bay Area, sport, Yoga, Zumba | 2 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on March 19, 2013
While you are doing your plank you might notice some of the muscles involved in doing the plank. As I am sure you know, there are many variations to the plank. Many movement practices/exercise disciplines do planks. There is a plank in yoga, in Pilates, in weight training . . . you probably have seen it all over. That alone tells you that it is an exercise/pose worth doing right? We even do planks in Nia. If there is a version in so many different disciplines it could be that is because does a body good. The plank we are doing in our Plank A Day Challenge is the plank on our forearms as opposed to the plank where your arms are straight (the position of the “top” of a push-up). There are a lot of muscles used in this plank.
The muscles being used in a plank are the abdominal muscles, the back muscles, the muscles in the arms, the shoulders, leg muscles, and butt muscles. So pretty much muscles in every muscle group. You can understand why it is such a great exercise. It is a full body workout. So, while it might not utilize every muscles it calls upon a lot of them. If you are participating in the challenge you might even notice that the endurance in the muscles is improving.
I often think of the plank as a great exercise to work on your core. You might have heard “core” and “core muscles” before. You might even wonder what they are. And just like so many things there are so many answers. I think of the core as a muscle group. I think of the core muscles as the group that allows your body to remain stable and/or upright. So sometimes that could include your quads if you are standing or doing a plank.
Having a strong and stable core helps us accomplish everyday things. From sitting, to walking, to doing things with our arm as in pushing, pulling, carrying, etc. A strong trunk helps us when we need to work with are arms. Especially with our arms extended. If we are do something with our arms out, say opening a window, grabbing a grocery bag and bringing it towards you, or pushing something in to a vehicle for transport, you rely a lot on your torso. So when it is strong and stable it can support you while you do these task.
On top of the strong core having arms that are able to open windows, grab and hold groceries, pull them towards you or push things help with every day life too. Be able to do all of these everyday things might be one reason the plank is in so many exercise disciplines. It is a great functional exercise. It is understood that it can assist with muscle strength and endurance. And it is one of the exercises that gets a lot of muscles all at once!
Are you participating in our challenge? Are you feeling your muscles? You have probably felt the muscles used in a plank, right?
Posted in Core Muscles, Muscles, Planking | Tagged: abdominal exercise, core muscle group, Core Muscles, core workout, exercise, functional exercise, Nia, Nia exercises, Pilates, plank, plank a day challenge, plank challenge, plank muscles, planking, shoulder exercise, stable core, weight training, workout, Yoga | Leave a Comment »
Posted by terrepruitt on March 19, 2013
So here it is day nineteen. Where are you? You can add time any day, it doesn’t have to be Sunday? Have you decided to add some time? Have you tried the stopwatch duration?
As I mentioned on my Sunday comment, planking before planking (as in doing another workout be it yoga or Nia) is a bit easier so I am shooting for a big jump this week. Again, I have my goal duration, but I am letting my stopwatch go to see how far I can comfortable get!
How are you doing? Do you have a goal duration you want to be at when the month is up?
Posted in Planking | Tagged: Nia, Plank A Day For A Month Challenge, planking, stopwatch, Yoga | 5 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on January 26, 2013
I know I have mentioned before that I teach Nia as a substitute Group Exercise teacher for the City of San Jose. What that means is when a teacher can’t teach a class s/he will send out a message saying that a substitute is needed. In order to give our clients/students what they want we work to keep the substituted class close to what the original class is. If a Boot Camp teacher needs a substitute the first choice to have instead would not be yoga. Or vice versa. As you can imagine, when someone plans on going to a class and shows up and it is not what was expected it can take a little wind out of someones sails. Sometimes in order to keep the class from being cancelled a different format will be allowed, but that is rare. Usually someone is able to step in with a similar format. It is a real challenge when people have not even heard of the type of dance exercise that you are going to do in substitution for their normal class.
It seems like with many people the first time they hear of something they are a little resistant. To me this is understandable. It seems like a natural thing to shy away from something that is unfamiliar. And as I said, it really can be disheartening when you are looking forward to a specific thing/type of workout and you walk in and find it to be a class of something you have never heard of. I don’t take it personal when people decide not to stay or leave in the middle of class. I’ve learned a long time ago that Nia is for everyBODY it is just not for everyone. It can be a HUGE step for some people. It can be a huge switch in thinking and moving and a lot of things, I understand. So when someone comes in not knowing what they are in for and completely embraces it — I love it. I find myself thinking, “YES!” I admire the person and their openness.
I have been teaching a class where I am listening to the music, dancing, cueing, sensing, and looking out into the room and as my eyes survey the students I will see someone who is completely new to Nia and utterly unfamiliar with it, dancing with all of their body, mind, and spirit. It is so amazing. For someone to come in and not having even heard of Nia before the class to just embrace something so fully–it is so wonderful. That is one of the best moments ever. The challenge for me is to keep going myself. There are times when I just want to stop and watch because it is such a beautiful thing to see someone dance with all of their heart. It is as if they are glowing and all of a sudden they are all I can see. It is so incredible.
I appreciate the people who say, “I’m open to anything.” Or even, “What the heck? I am here. I might as well try it.” But it is really amazing to look out and see the ones that are just INTO it. In a Nia class where people come to DO Nia, it is typical to see people dancing with everything they have, but to see it in a class that is usually not Nia . . . . ahhhhhhh!
I felt like sharing this today. Thank you for letting me share a bit of joy with you. Today has been a GREAT day. Nothing spectacular or even note worthy has happen but there has been a lot of laughing and any day with a lot of laughing is a great day. Don’t you think?
Posted in Nia | Tagged: Boot Camp, City of San Jose, dance class, dance exercise, exercise class, Group Exercise classes, Group Exercise teacher, Nia, Nia class, Nia exercise, Nia in San Francisco Bay Area, Nia student, Nia Teacher, Nia workout, San Jose exercise classes, San Jose Group Exercise, substitute teacher, teach Nia, workout class, Yoga | Leave a Comment »
Posted by terrepruitt on December 10, 2012
WAHOOOOOO! Day #10!!! How are you feeling about completing 10 days? Good? It is always nice to have done something good for yourself for 10 consecutive days. So yay!! Let’s keep going. I have one friend already talking about making this 30 minutes a day thing a permanent habit. That is really a great idea. Thirty minutes really isn’t that long.
Today is Monday, I’ll be back here after I teach my 9 am Nia class. This month I am subbing a Yoga class while the regular teacher is on maternity leave. I am teaching Nia and the yoga students love it.
Thank you so much for being here and for participating in the challenge! WAHOOO!
Posted in December 2012 30 Minute Movement Challenge | Tagged: Day #10, December 30 Minute Movement Challenge, Nia class, Yoga | 6 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on November 13, 2012
Last week I cancelled my Monday and Wednesday Nia class and got a substitute for my Tuesday Nia class with the City of San Jose. I decided to take the next level of Nia training. I was a White Belt, now I am a Blue Belt. Nia calls their trainings intensive. I cannot assume to know why, but I am glad they do. They are very intense. The training is part lecture and part moving. The moving can be dancing or types of exercises to further the learning process. People tend to learn better when they are doing, so there is a lot of doing. In my rough calculations it was about 53 hours of instruction, including the Master Classes. It was Saturday through Friday. It was exhausting. It was energizing. It was incredible. As I have mentioned before and I will continue to mention Nia is a cardio dance exercise. Come to a class. Move. Have fun. Sweat. Get your workout in. But Nia is also a practice. I compare it to yoga in that a person can go into a yoga class and work out and do the exercise and then leave and not give it a second though. Or they could give it a second thought. They could take on some of the aspects of yoga, they could practice breathing and/or meditating or anything else that might be attached to their yoga class on a deeper level. That is what a person can do with Nia too. So some people take the intensives for self-growth with no intention of teaching at all. Even if they are not planning on teaching or are not currently doing so, the training is just as intense.
Each belt level has its own focus and intent. Blue Belt focus is Communication, Relationship and Intimacy with the intent to energize personal connection through self-discovery and communication by following The Body’s Way. Sounds like a lot. Ok, it IS a lot. LOL!
In addition to a focus and intent, each belt level (aside from Green) has its own set of principles. With the Blue Belt, the principles were made to layer onto or over the White Belt Principles. Some of the information is very close to being the same, but with a little more added to it. It is very interesting the way Nia does things. It is very amazing the training they come up with and the delivery of it.
In this training we were shown many things, one was an enlightened way to use the Nia 5 Stages or the Developmental Anatomy to measure all types of things and where we might be in a process. It is a pretty cool tool. It is part of the Body’s Way.
I am 100% positive I will have more posts regarding the Blue Belt Intensive, the Blue Belt Principles, and my thoughts on it all. I am still processing it right now. My mind is racing with thoughts, ideas, things I learned, things I didn’t learn, just a lot of things. There is so much that I want to share. There is also a lot I don’t want to share. Nia is not a secret society by any means. There are no secrets to the intensives, in fact most of the information is things that have been around for as long as I can remember. The information is stuff you have probably heard before. It is just the WAY they deliver it. And the way it is connected to the body that is somewhat unique. If I decide not to share something or talk vaguely about some things it is because I don’t want to ruin the surprise of some things for those of you that will be taking the Blue Belt. Since the Blue Belt Principles are layered onto the White Belt Principles I will probably write more post about them too. And we will see what comes up. I have chosen to participate in Nia as a practice. For now, I will revel in Blue!
Is there something that you have in your life you consider a practice?
Posted in Blue Belt, Nia | Tagged: 13 principles, Blue Belt Principles, cardio dance, cardio dance exercise, cardio dance exercise classes, City of San Jose Nia Classes, dance exercise, Developmental Anatomy, focus and intent, Master classes, Nia 5 Stages, Nia Blue Belt, Nia dancing, Nia exercise, Nia Intensives, Nia Practice, Nia training, Nia White Belt, TBW, White Belt Principles, Yoga, Yoga Practice | 2 Comments »
Posted by terrepruitt on July 17, 2012
Because I teach Nia I am not used to wearing shoes when I workout. Nia is a workout done in bare feet, so I don’t wear socks and shoes. Yoga, Pilates, even resistance training can be done without shoes. Recently I was in a training that required me to wear shoes. And it was an all day training, eight hours. Since my feet do not really like shoes AND my tennis shoes are kind of old, I decided to wear some additional cushion in my shoes to help my feet. My right foot is very sensitive because the middle toes no longer straighten fully so the middle of my foot does not lie flat on the ground. The ball of my right foot and the pinky edge get sore. They get more work than they should. So I decided to employ a method that I used when I was young, in addition to the extra cushion I had added relief later.
Maybe this method can help some females that wear those REALLY high-heeled shoes that are so popular now-a-days. When I was younger the style was to wear pumps. I have a wide foot and pumps were not always comfortable. What I would do was, I would put a gym sock on my foot but I would roll the sock down to around the ball of my foot, then I would shove my foot – with the sock on – into my shoe. Then I would get ready. And back then I was one of those girls who took a ridiculous amount of time to get ready. So I would end up wearing the gym sock-shoe combination for at least an hour and a half. This accomplished two things: 1) It somewhat stretched out my shoe and 2) (after walking around and standing while getting ready to go out with my foot squeezed into the shoe) ANYTHING felt better than that!
One time I was getting ready and I was walking around the house and after passing my dad three or four times he finally said, “You’re not going out like THAT right?”. And I laughed and I had to explain it to him. No rolled gym socks were not part of the outfit.
So while I did not wear rolled up gym socks in the training I wore these foot huggers that have a little gel in them. So I had extra cushion and I had something that felt nice when half way through the day I slipped them off. While they were not hurting me as my gym-sock-wrapped feet did they did feel more roomy and happy after I took them off.
I think this method could possibly be applied to many things. When you have to wear shoes all day if you wear something to help cushion your foot, but might take up a bit of room in your shoe, it will feel nice when you take the cushion off in the middle of the day. At least that is what happened to me, plus it helped when I was young and smooshing my feet into pumps.
You know everything is just easier to handle when your feet are comfortable. That is why they make those “gellin’” insoles. That is also why I don’t wear uncomfortable shoes any longer. I don’t think it looks nice when a female has on a pretty shoe, but you can tell she is in pain with every step she takes. I would rather walk with comfort. So sometimes using the stretch-y method might help. The “No Pain, No Gain” is just a play on that famous saying . . . although when I was young I did it just while I was getting ready, I did not do it recently. My feet were comfortable all day. It was just that halfway through when they were a little sweaty and tired, I took off the huggers, changed my socks and gave them more room. Ahhhh. I was very happy that I had thought to do that. It worked out very well for me.
Do you have shoes that you wear that you might benefit from if applying this method? C’mon we all have at one time in our lives.
Posted in Helpful Hints, Misc | Tagged: high heeled shoes, Nia, Nia training, Nia workout, No pain no gain, Pilates, pumps, resistance training, rolled gym socks, tennis shoes, training, Yoga | Leave a Comment »