Terre Pruitt's Blog

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Archive for June 8th, 2013

Sense Your . . . . .

Posted by terrepruitt on June 8, 2013

In Nia we often say while dancing, “Everybody sense your . . . ”  (For more see: Nia White Belt Principle #13  Teaching What You Sense.)  This is to help bring attention to specific body parts.  It could be because we are doing a specific move and we want to have the student’s attention on that body part.  It could be that we feel a body part just needs attention.  It could be that we want the students to move in a different way.  Sensing a body part though does not require movement of that part.  If I were to say right now, “Everybody sense your hand.”  I wouldn’t necessarily mean for you to move your hand.  I mean for you to sense it.  Recently on Facebook I posted, “EveryBODY sense your trachea!!!!!! Breathe . . . . . . . .” and one of my friends asked HOW?  Fabulous question.  How do you sense your trachea?  No, really how do YOU sense your trachea?  How do you sense any of your body parts?

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, ZumbaAs I said, sensing a body part does not necessarily mean moving it.  It could, if that is how YOU bring attention to a part and if that is how YOU sense it.  It could mean you LOOK at it.  Maybe looking at it helps you sense it.  It could mean you touch it because you want to cause it sensation so that you can sense it.  There are many ways to sense a body part and we all have different ways of doing it.  Some might start with closing their eyes and picturing it in their head.  Some might just think of it and be able to sense it right away.  Part of the practice is the discovery of how we sense different body parts.

For sensing your trachea I thought that one way an individual could do it was by breathing.  That might help you sense your trachea.  Sensing your breath coming in and out might help.  Maybe coughing would help?  Maybe meditating on it?  Maybe touching it?  There really are so many ways to do it and it is up to the individual.  Sensing body parts could even take practice.  Maybe each body part is different.  Perhaps you can easily sense your hand without looking at it, moving it, or touching it, but since you might not often “sense your trachea” it could take a little bit of thought and practice.  Again . . . . the wonderful journey that is Nia and sensing your body.

Often times we don’t even give a second thought to a body part, unless it is in pain.  Unless it SCREAMS at us for attention we might never stop to listen to it.  We might never stop to sense it.  There are so many reasons to sense your body . . . I have already stated just a few that might come up while in a Nia Class.  I am sure you can think of many others.

This is one of the things we do in Nia that can be carried out into life and as we like to call it as we “dance through life”.  This is one of the things you can do that makes Nia “practice”.  You can practice sensing your body parts throughout the day.  Back to the “pain” part of attention . . . say you have pain in your knee, you are going to want to sense it as you move throughout your day so that you can move in a way as to not cause more pain.  Another example if you’re wanting to straighten up your posture a little bit you might want to practice sensing your spine or your shoulders during your day.  As I said, many reason to play with and practice sensing your body parts.  And it really is an individual thing.  You do it in your own way.

Starting with body parts you can see and touch might be a good place to start if you are needing a suggested starting point. That way looking or touching can be the beginning of the sensing journey.  Either way, if you let yourself be open to it, I am sure you will find a way.

So how do YOU sense your trachea?

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