Terre Pruitt's Blog

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

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Archive for the ‘Nia’ Category

New Way To Connect

Posted by terrepruitt on October 14, 2020

I was recently listening to a recorded meeting for Nia teachers and one of them came on camera to share something she was doing as a way for her to learn a routine and connect with students. The teacher said that she had “pop-up” Zooms where they just popped on for 15 or 20 minutes to review a song and that was it. I thought this was a great way to connect with community during this time when we can’t actually meet in person, so I tried it today. We had a great time.

This being the first time I decided to do this “pop-up” Zoom right after our regular Nia class. I was thinking that it would be easier for the students to just stay then if it were a separate meeting. I figured the Nia students would stay and more people could join.  I had notified people of the plan ahead of time.  My husband pointed out that advance notification makes it not truly a “pop-up”.  To which I responded, that since it was not in my monthly e-mail or on my website I was considering it a “pop-up”.**

When everyone arrived I quickly spoke a bit about katas, what Nia calls a combination of moves. The katas were what I wanted to focus on, the arrangement of the katas can be changed and would take a lot longer than 15 minutes to learn so that was not what this meeting was for — AND THAT WAS THE PART I WAS TRYING TO LEARN. Simple review, me showing/explaining, then them doing.  I would check in after each kata and with a “thumbs up” response we would move to the next one.  I reviewed the three katas in the song, and then we basically did them to music in the order in which we reviewed them.  To me I often feel a review of moves does not prepare me for doing them with the music, so we did them to the song.  Then after a “thumbs up” all around we danced the entire song.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via Zoom, Nia White Belt training via ZoomThe moves were so easy and I didn’t talk too much beforehand so we finished – having danced the song twice – in 20 minutes.  We had a lot of fun.  I picked a really easy song so we could get through it and have fun.

Thanks to Joan T.  for her idea.  I think we are going to do it again!  Although the next time I will probably send out advanced notification and I might put it on my website so I might have to change the name to a “pop-in”.  Pop in, learn the song then go about your day.  I want it to be a quick thing so people will come and we can keep it light and fun.

What do you think?

Are you or your teachers finding ways to stay connected while we are not have in-person classes?  What are you all doing?

**(edited 11.19.20) I am not calling this quick “non-classes” POP-INS, and having actually classes that are Pop-Ups!

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Changes For Nia Members And Teachers

Posted by terrepruitt on October 12, 2020

Ahhh, today there were two meetings on Zoom to introduce the new options for Members and Teachers.  There was one for brand new Nia White Belt Graduates, since I just attended that training I was able to listen to that one.  Then there was one for people who are current Nia Members and I am a current Nia member.  So in light of those meetings I feel like it is the perfect time to post this post that has been sitting on my desktop.  I want to remind readers that I am a Nia teacher, I teach a dance exercise class called Nia.  Nia is really much, much more than that, but that is how I describe it when talking about what I teach.  I have written many posts about it and I have a lot of information about it on my website.  Nia was initially created by two people, Debbie Rosas and Carlos AyaRosas.  Carlos left the organization in, I believe it was 2010.  Debbie has continued the work.  It is so difficult to describe what “the work” means.  She continues to learn about the body and why it needs to move and then applies that to trainings.  It is multi-dimensional.  I am posting this as a reminder that anything I post about Nia has come from their/her teachings.  As I have said many times before not everything in Nia is new . . . they did not invent the moves we do in Nia, but they have added their own way of doing them and learning them and showing how they can help you move in your body more comfortably.  In addition to that reminder I want to remind people that many of the movement class forms (Zumba, PiYo, etc.) that you may take require the teacher to be licensed.  Nia is one of those things.  I pay a fee in order to market my class as “Nia”.  And Nia is introducing new ways that people can be licensed.

When I directly quote Debbie or the material I state it.  As a Nia teacher we are encouraged to share information about Nia.  I have taken pictures of our routine covers and I have created documents myself.  I have also used pages of The Nia Technique Book.  But I don’t post pictures of the training material from the belts.  ANYONE can buy The Nia Technique Book, but only a participant receives the training material – well, now I can say only a graduate as a current member receives the training material.  🙂 (This is part of the new options.)  I share the information about the belt trainings to entice you into wanting more.

Nia is giving options on licensing.  It used to be that if you wanted to teach you paid a licensing fee – either monthly or annually.  That fee came with a lot of things . . . DVDs of the routines (music, the choreography, and the additional training for a routine), teleconference calls, written articles, handouts, and various stuff, now the routines are on NiaTV and there are podcasts and other recorded things.  There are meditations and various types of movements including routines with the 52 Moves and Moving to Heal . . . there is a plethora of stuff.  Nia is going to have three tiers in which people can stay connected to the wealth of Nia training, they will still have the monthly NiaTV subscription if you just want access to Nia Workout Videos, Music, and Podcasts. The tiers just relate to the additional stuff that is part of Nia.

They are putting up a new website this week (hopefully Wednesday, 10/14/20) so you will be able to get all the details there.  I do not want to start to list them because I don’t want to misstate anything.  It is better for you to get the information from the source.  I am just giving you a heads up to let you know that there are options now.  And with Nia there is always a huge amount of material to access.  So as a member you can get a lot of information and if you want to teach you get more.  Each tier adds on stuff we will have access too.

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Since the old website is going away and it will have a new look, I thought I would post my profile page as a photo for this post.  I really hope that you will look into Nia . . . you can look into as a movement practice (if you like to dance) or if you want more.  Keep in mind the new website should be up this week.

So exciting!  Who wants to talk about Nia with me?

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That’s A Wrap – FIRST EVERY Nia Belt Training Online

Posted by terrepruitt on October 5, 2020

Ahhh . . . so today was the actual last day of the FIRST EVER NIA WHITE BELT TRAINING ONLINE! Ok, I just want to clarify it was not only the first Nia White Belt Training online, it was the first Nia Belt Training online – ever. So it was super special! If you have read this journey from the beginning you may know, but just in case you haven’t I want to summarize briefly. Nia is a holistic wellness system, I call it a practice (like yoga) . . . through it, I teach cardio dance classes. Nia has levels of learning called belts. The first one is the Nia White Belt. The belts have thirteen principles (yoga has limbs). The principles can be applied to everyday life so you do not have to have teaching Nia in mind when you take the training. The Nia White Belt is all about the body and living in sensation. For some it is a reminder to dance through life and enjoy living in the body — for others that is a totally new and unique concept. Regardless it is a really amazing experience. I have said over and over Nia isn’t always about NEW stuff but the way Nia describes things and relates it to life it very cool. The training was two hours, once a week over sixteen weeks and it is over. I am going to go out on a limb and say we are all sad. I know that is very presumptuous, but I really believe it to be true. We are all sad that it is over. It was an amazing experience and we are sad it is done. But we are also happy because there is a lot more to come. With Nia there is always more.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via Zoom, Nia White Belt training via ZoomToday was not really what I was thinking it would be . . . a little disappointed that it wasn’t more of a ceremony, but it was very celebratory and joyous. We actually spent most of the time moving. We spent A LOT of the time dancing. We danced and Debbie reviewed the Nia White Belt Principles 2020. It was awesome.

Last week we were told there is new stuff and we would be told about it today, but I am guessing they couldn’t fit it all in so we are having another meeting next week that is going to explain the membership. If you want to teach you have to pay to do so . . . pretty much like every single licensed thing out there. Instructors pay for Zumba, PiYo, and all the things out there so that isn’t new, but the pay structure is going to change . . . so that is what I wanted to hear about today, but that didn’t happen. We danced and that was fun.

Even though we were not together in a room dancing, it really did feel like community. Especially when the host (we were on Zoom) shared everyone dancing, my entire screen was full of people dancing all over the world! That is amazing to me. I so love the idea of that. I know that I danced with a woman in Africa, a woman in Germany, a woman in Tennessee, a woman in Washington, two women in Texas, a woman in Idaho, and a woman in Chile. I don’t know where everyone else was but we were all together and we were dancing.

This was the second time I have taken the White Belt, the first time was in 2008 and an audit in 2009, but this was a full retake and the material was new. Again, the way it was presented was new, the language was new, but the core teachings are the same. I keep emphasizing that because that is important to me. Nia is not an opinion, which can change, it is a system based on science and ancient teachings so the base is consistent, yet it adjusts and grows.

Today was really fun. I loved moving and dancing with everyone.

I hope that you choose to explore more about Nia. I have posted about the thirteen Nia White Belt Principles 2020 I just studied (and will continue to study) and I have posted about Nia before. There is information on this blog and my site and of course, information about the trainings on Nianow.com

In Joy!

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Nia White Belt P13 – Living What You Sense – 2020

Posted by terrepruitt on September 30, 2020

I can’t believe it.  I was just agreeing with a Nia friend via Facebook that the time in our Nia training went really fast when we thought it would be a long training.  Sixteen weeks.  We started in June and we are approaching our last meeting.  It just proves to me that time really is relative.  I don’t know what the last meeting will be like because the most recent meeting we just had was the introduction to the 13th and LAST Nia White Belt Principle – 2020.  So we have been through all 13 principles.  The last one is Nia White Belt P13 – Living What You Sense, with a tagline of Crafting With Sensation.  A Sensory Study of Somatic Leadership.

Live what you sense through your body.  As a top level example: if you sense you are cold, put on a jacket.  🙂  Somewhat basically what we do daily.  Listen to the body and express yourself accordingly.  And, actually a lot of us don’t do that.  Some of us can’t do that for many reasons.  One could be something as necessary as a job.  Sadly sometimes we have to ignore our bodies to do our jobs.  A person may not be able to go to the bathroom because of their job . . . if you are out in the field or can’t leave your post.  A person many not be able to eat when they are hungry because they can’t eat on the job.  So sadly, in our society, sometimes we have to repress our body’s communications with us.  But hopefully when we are able we can listen to it.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via Zoom, Nia White Belt training via ZoomThis principle has three triads, the main one: Listen, Sense, Express and two others.  P13 (t1) is Wait, Receive, Act so a drill down of the way we can respond to a body’s message from “taste, touch, listen, look, smell”.  And P13 (t2) which I think can be applied to life and students of Nia, but has a big impact on Nia teachers as it is Listen, Dance, and Share.  In between the Dance and Share corners is a little insert triad of Ask, Wait, Receive.  So a Nia teacher is taught to dance what s/he senses.  So we listen to the music and really dance to it.  We are taught that the choreography is important.  We are told that everything is crafted with science in mind, with the BMES and the FAMSS in mind, and with the choreography in mind so it is very important, but it is not as important as DANCING to the music.  And so we are taught to “ask” our bodies what we sense, then we wait allowing us to receive and answer and THEN we share.  So while we are dancing we might ask for some information and then notice that our hip is tight so we invite our students to sense THEIR OWN HIPS, by saying, “Everybody sense your hips . . ” , or our shoulders seem tense, so we can say, “Everybody sense your scapulae or your wings” or that our feet are light with a sense of ease and we may say, “Everybody sense the energy in your feet” . . . .  We invite everyBODY to sense any number of things to help everybody to bring awareness to their body.

Also included in this portion of the book aligned with this principle are the 7 Cycles of Nia.

This is one of the principles that has changed, the core of it is the same, but it has changed to be more of an”anyone and everyone type of principle” instead of just being geared towards people who want to teach.  Keep in mind this belt, the Nia White Belt is what needs to be taken in order to teach Nia, but not everyone that takes it goes onto teach Nia.  It is NOT just for those that want to teach.  So the principles have been morphed over the years to be more broad.  There is a specific belt that may be taken for those that want to teach or are teaching, but it is not required only the white belt is required to teach Nia.

I want to again remind you and invite you to look into Nia further.  Maybe buy the book – keeping in mind it is from 2004.  Definitely take Nia classes.

As always, I am sure that as I keep learning I will keep sharing, so stayed tuned.

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Nia White Belt P12 – Body + Life Transformation – 2020

Posted by terrepruitt on September 21, 2020

This week we quickly reviewed Nia White Belt Principle 12.  It is a pretty involved principle and there is not a lot of time to really dig deep into it.  There are four triads to this principle.  That information alone is an indication of how complex this principle is.  Nia White Belt P12 – Body + Life Transformation with a tagline of Purpose – Potential – Possibility.

Like many places, here is where Nia and Nia training can translate into something that a person that doesn’t want to teach can benefit from.  Even twelve years ago when I participated in the Nia White Belt Intensive it was not ALL about teaching us how to teach Nia, but as Nia continues to grow it has shifted even further into being a “life style practice” to include those that don’t want to teach.  The description of this principle is Sensory Study of Personal Enrichment and Growth.  The first triad is about Past, Present, and Future with the center being Knowledge with wings of NiaTV and Nia Training.  Basically it’s representing oneself and indicating that we can continue to learn and gain knowledge with the things available to us.

The additional triads each have a tagline and description, which you can learn about when you take the training.  As often is the case, I don’t want to give it ALL away and really can’t get into each principle or triad in depth because I do – believe it or not – try to keep my posts from being too long.  P12 (t1) is about oneself with purpose, potential, and possibility making up the three corners of the triad.  Tapping into our ideal of ourselves.  P12 (t2) is very complex and is about potential with a top-level “map” on how a teacher learns a routine.  But, it can be applied to a student too as it represents loDance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via Zoom, Nia White Belt training via Zoomoking, moving, then sharing a routine.  It reminds us of how we blend science, craft, and art into our dance.  The science has us looking, listening, and imagining as tool to learn and do the moves.  Then we can energize the moves with the nine energies (movement forms), crafting the routine.  And the art is the part where we share, having really connected through the music we are able to dance to the music sharing the science and craft.

P12 (t3) is class, core, magic where we learn, embody, and share.  I feel like these two triads should be switched, but I also feel the main triad should have a different order.  Which reminds me, there are a lot of different ways people learn and to me I would Learn – Embody – Share Nia Routines (t3 tagline) as a way TO engage the Somatic Wheels of Transformation (t2 tagline), but I also see needing to engage them first in order to share Nia.

While for me, aspects of the principle that are related to teaching Nia are the most intriguing I see how it is all related.  That is what is amazing and fun about Nia . . . the principles can be applied to daily life.  One does not have to want to teach Nia to be able to relate it to life.

This principle is about purpose, potential, and possibility and the triads are little maps or signs to remind us of the tools that we have in our Nia toolbox.

Can you see how this (thinking about your purpose, potential, and possibilities of your life) can be MORE THAN just an fitness practice?

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Tweaking Nia White Belt P11 – 2020

Posted by terrepruitt on September 17, 2020

Normally I post on Wednesdays.  I have this self-imposed posting schedule.  I thought it was important to be consistent.  I have eased up a bit and try to cut myself some slack when I miss a day.  Sometimes I forget, sometimes I can’t think of anything to write, sometimes I just get busy, sometimes I wanna break . . . . I try to let it go.  And NORMALLY, I wouldn’t post on Thursday, because . . . well, so many reasons, but I decided to post today.  As many of you know I am taking an online training.  It is THE FIRST EVER Nia Belt training online.  It is amazing to be a part of the FIRST EVER Nia Belt Training ONLINE – but I don’t think we are that special because a couple of weeks in (if even that many) other trainers starting teaching Nia Belts online and Debbie started other belts online.  We were just the first by a couple of weeks or so.  But they learned a lot in those first couple of weeks.  Anyway . . . I started with that because part of the training is POD meetings.  I know I mentioned the PODs before, but it was in the beginning and I didn’t know exactly what they would be.  Well, it is great.  I don’t think that POD stands for anything in fact it should probably be Pod, but I got POD stuck in my head so that is how I think of it.  Anyway (again) . . . my POD meets on Thursdays and I wanted to share somethings that came out of my meeting today.

First of all the PODs are led by Nia Trainers.  Nia Trainers train for years.  I am not sure how many years – if there even is a requirement – one has to be involved with Nia before asked to be a trainer, but I do know that becoming a trainer is a long commitment.  I think it is about two years.  A Nia TRAINER is someone who can deliver Nia Training, so one of the belts or one of the other modes Nia has.  The trainers are volunteering their time to be POD leaders and to mentor us students.  With all of that said, I believe that all of the POD leaders are great, I mean they have to be because they are Nia Trainers, but I know I am very lucky to have a FABULOUS mentor.  My POD leader is Laurie Bass.  If you are looking at anything Nia you will more than likely see Laurie.  She has been used as a model for many of the promotional material.  You can see her at 2:34 in the Debbie Rosas and the Nia 5 Stages video.  She is an amazing trainer.  I feel very fortunate to have been assigned to her POD.  She is very generous with her knowledge and her time.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via Zoom, Nia White Belt training via ZoomIn my last post I wrote about how the term “Sacred Athlete” didn’t really resonate with me.  Well, Laurie gave me some suggestions and ideas on how to make it work for me.  As I have said over and over, Nia changes the language a lot so she reminded me that I could do that.  I could just use something else instead of “Sacred Athlete”.  If I use something that DOES resonate with me then I can work with the principle and use it to further my relationship with Nia.  Sticking with a term that I just can’t get on board with made me want to shrug off the entire principle.

The first thing she said helped too, “Where do I want to expend my energy?”  I feel this is a great question to start off the study of Nia White Belt P11 – 2020.  Then she threw out the idea of “sacred” meaning “with purpose” and “athlete” aligning more with “training to reach greatness”.  So trying to shed the definitions that bother me does help, but I really liked her suggestion to just let the “Sacred Athlete” phrase be “your goal/your ideal”.  Not the words “your goal/your ideal”, but the ideal YOU or the goal YOU.  And, to me that tied in to what I mentioned Debbie said . . . she said she had different philosophies for the different Debbie’s in her life . . . different for WifeDebbie, MomDebbie, CEODebbie, etc.  Ahhhhhh!

So that scrunchy face (the one I mentioned in my last post) relaxed.  My whole body went, “Ahhhh!” Being able to just dispense with that term made me feel much better about this principle.  Laurie also had more wisdom to dispense that is helping me cringe less, I am not saying that I won’t tense up when someone uses that term (ICK!!!!), I am just saying that I can now dig into Nia White Belt P11 – Creating A Sensory Life – 2020. because her take on it is making it less and less distasteful.

Do you have any phrases that bother you?  Do you have substitutes for those phrases?

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Nia White Belt P11 – Creating A Sensory Life – 2020

Posted by terrepruitt on September 14, 2020

So this is one of the principles that has changed a bit.  The true core of it hasn’t, but I feel that Nia is trying to make it more accessible to everyone instead of just people that want to teach Nia.  This shift was introduced not too long after I took the Nia White Belt training.  So instead of focusing on the business and marketing required as a Nia teacher, the Nia White Belt Principle #11 focuses on your “life’s purpose”.  So this week we were introduced to Nia White Belt P11 – Creating a Sensory Life.  This is a great principle for when someone is looking for their life’s purpose or when someone wants to hone their purpose or goals.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via Zoom, Nia White Belt training via ZoomThe triad consists of Body, Nia, and Life with corresponding Purpose, Potential, and Possibility.  Then we have Purpose again as one of the wings along with Philosophy expanding out from the middle which is Sacred Athlete.  That term just does not resonate with me in any way.  In fact if you watch me when someone says it or I read it you may detect a scrunch in my face.  I cannot reconcile any definition of sacred to this principle and certainly not when it is combined with athlete.  But that is ok.  I do not have to agree with everything Nia teaches, nor all of the language they choose to use.  I get the gist of it and that is what is important.

This principal has other language that makes me (somewhat) cringe so I will just share what I understand the core of this principal to be . . . basically search your soul for your purpose and then live daily to move yourself toward that purpose.  When you are living your purpose you will be happy.  In the training today we did some exercises to help guide us towards determining our purpose/goal.  In addition to what we did in class Debbie shared some other tools and exercise to help.

She shared that she has a separate philosophy that she applies to each area of her life.  Her philosophy for her marriage is not the same as for raising her kids . . . that kind of thing.  She also reminded us that our purpose can change.  She encouraged everyone to keep searching and checking in (with ourselves) to always make sure we are moving toward our purpose . . . even if we examine what we are doing and realize that if we keep doing it we will not reach our original goal . . . so that is when we may need to adjust what we are doing or it could even mean we need to re-write our purpose.  It can somewhat be related to how we dance.  We want to move to have pleasurable sensations in our body (for example walking without pain) so we take inventory of our body and our body’s movements and then move in ways that will enable us to reach our goal of pain free (as per my example) walking.  We may at times need to tweak how we are moving in order to reach our goal.

So, to me, this principle is what makes Nia “a holistic fitness practice addressing each aspect of your life – body, mind and soul.”

Do you know what your life’s purpose is?  Do you take steps daily towards it?

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Nia White Belt P10 – X-Ray Anatomy – 2020

Posted by terrepruitt on September 7, 2020

This is a great principle . . . ok, ok, yes, I know I say that about all of them . . . Debbie does, too.  I laughed at her today when she said something like that.  Again this principle has not changed since I originally took my Nia White Belt back in 2008.  Like I continue to say, the language has changed, the way it is presented, and the knowledge behind it has greatly increased but it is still the basic principle – look at the clues of the body to help you see what is “inside”.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via Zoom, Nia White Belt training via ZoomNia White Belt P10 – X-Ray Anatomy.  The triad, as you can see is Bones/Joints, Ligaments/Tendons, and Soft Tissue/Muscles.  These are the things we can “see”.  We make observations then move from there.

If you see one arm able to reach higher than the other or a pant leg shorter than the other, is it a mechanical situation or is it a structural one?  Is there muscle tightness in the shoulder that is preventing the arm to reach high or is one leg actually shorter than the other?  X-Ray Anatomy is just about looking and observing.  With the insight we gain from observing we can decide how to proceed in moving in a class, in teaching a class, and/or just moving through life.  We can then apply our knowledge of movement and anatomy to move in ways to help create ease in the shoulders that will allow the arm to reach its full potential and ease in the legs to allow for their full length.  We can also learn to give our body what it needs to find balance and ease even when it is not equal on both sides.

One way we learn X-Ray Anatomy is by Zorro.  Zorro is just a term Nia uses to describe making note of the flow of energy or the lines in a body.  You can do it by observing people – they can be people on TV or people you see in person.  Just quick strokes on paper (or if you have a device you can use) to note the movement of a body.

As I have said, I have posted about Nia Principle #10 X-Ray Anatomy and Zorro before so no reason to go further in this post.  Please click on over to those posts to learn more.

X-Ray Anatomy is just what we in Nia call observing a body and how it moves and we use Zorro as a tool to see the flow of energy all with the goal of helping ensure that we and our students are moving in the most safe and efficient way available.

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Nia White Belt P9 – Upper Extremities – 2020

Posted by terrepruitt on August 31, 2020

Sometimes I laugh when I start to write up my share for the Nia White Belt training. It is so rich there is absolutely no way I can share it all . . . and that is good because it is fun to get more information when you take the training. And with Nia and the Nia 52 Moves there is always more to be had. This week we went over Nia White Belt P9 – Upper Extremities.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via Zoom, Nia White Belt training via ZoomThe picture shows you Principle 9 as Upper Extremities with the tagline of Creative Expressions. And the definition being Sensory Study of Expression. The triad consists of the fingers, hands, and shoulder girdle. Then we have the spine in the middle because it helps and/or is a part of these movements along with the base and the core. We use our fingers and our hands to express ourselves and communicate, yes? Think about it, many of us “talk with” our hands, we reach out with our hands to comfort and be comforted, we can tell someone to come, go, stop, hurry up with our fingers and/or our hands, things like that. They also can be moved in ways that open and close joints and direct energy. Finger and/or hands can be moved to activate muscles. They can be used as the vehicles to help move our arms. Energy flow or lack thereof can affect our base. The spine can provide stability or enable us to move our fingers, hands, and shoulder girdle. The same with the core, it can provide stability or help us with the engagement of our upper extremities.

There is so much that can be said about each of the Nia 52 Moves individually, it is one of the things that is really fun to experience in a training (as I mentioned and will continue to mention).  We review the anatomy (because, remember Nia White Belt is about the BODY) and how the moves move the joints and muscles in the body. I can always revisit any movement and according to my current list of posts I still need to post about a few of the Nia 52 Move that are upper extremities, but for now I will just post the list and links.  I also want to state a reminder that the Nia 52 Moves instructions are done int THE BODY’S WAY.  It could be that your body will not move that way but after practicing the moves your body starts to move that way OR it could be that your body will never move in the exact way the Nia 52 Moves are laid out.  We all have different bodies and sometimes there are injuries or trauma we are dealing with.  And sometimes we are just not made to move that way.  That is why it is very important to keep BOTH THE BODY’S WAY and YOUR BODY’S WAY in mind when practicing Nia (or any movement for that matter).

The Upper Extremities

Arm Moves (3)
35.  Blocks
36.  Punches
37.  Elbow Strikes

Hand Moves (7)
38.  Touching
39.  Fist
40.  Pumps
41.  Strikes
42.  Chop Cut
43.  Webbed Spaces
44.  Palm Directions 

Finger Moves (8)
45. Finger Extensions
46. Finger Flicks
47. Creepy Crawlers
48. Spear Fingers
49. Catching Flies
50. Claw Hand
51. Power Finger Crossover
52. Balance Finger

I invite you to click on the links to see how you can do each move.  Then practice and play and let me know what you think.  Which is your favorite?  Which ones do you do throughout your day (Dancing Through Life)?  Which ones do you do in YOUR workout?

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Nia White Belt P8 – Core – 2020

Posted by terrepruitt on August 26, 2020

Nia describes the core as three body weights, pelvis, chest, and head. In the training we are currently studying Nia White Belt P8 – Core | Three Body Weights. Again – at least I think I have mentioned it – since Nia is so rich and it is easy to spend a lot of time on one thing, I somewhat feel our two hours are a little rushed, even though Debbie skillfully got through the entire lesson. It would be easy to spend more time. Not only does Nia study the bone structure of the core (the pelvis, chest, and head) but it incorporates the energies associated with each. So the description of the principle is “sensory study of energy centers.”

First we discussed the Nia 52 Moves associated with the core. There are seven.

PELVIS MOVES (2)Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia online, San Jose Virtual classes, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, Nia Technique, Yin Yoga, stretch classes, online exercise, Zoom classes, virtual yoga, City of San Jose online exercise, live classes via Zoom
Pelvic Circles
Hip Bumps

CHEST MOVES (2)
Chest Isolations
Shimmy

SPINE MOVES (2)
Undulation
Spinal Roll

HEAD MOVE (1)
Head and Eye Movements

Then we discussed the physical body as is represented by the three points of the triad for Principle 8, pelvis, chest, and head. We reviewed the bones in the pelvis and then moved through the two pelvis move. Since Nia is based on how the body moves we spend a lot of time on how the body is put together. When you understand how the bones move in relation to each other is helps you understand how the body is supposed to move AND, if you pay attention, it can help you understand how your body moves.  For many people, when bones are likened to objects it helps with understanding how they function, say the pelvis is a bowl or a container that is meant to hold and contain and ribs are like a cage made to protect. Remembering that the hip joint is a ball and socket and NOT a hinged joint could lead to a smooth gait when picturing the movement as a rolling movement and not a back and forth. So, in Nia, we examine the structures, learn how they are supposed to move according to the way they were designed, and then we move in different ways to allow us to sense our own body’s way.

We spend a bit of time reviewing the Nia Moves and how they can be adjusted in regards to the planes, the intensity levels, and different body’s needs.

Then she spent time connecting the areas of the spine and body with the energy bodies or the chakras.

CHAKRA 1 | Base or RootAssociation to Core:  Pelvis
It is located at the base of the spine, near the coccyx, in the pelvic area between the perineum and the anus. It’s energy is associated with your legs, coccyx, rectum, and sex organs.

CHAKRA 2 | The Sensual Center (Sacral)Association to Core:  Pelvis
Sacral chakra is located in the lumbar region, just above the sexual organs, and about 2 to 3 inches below the navel.  It is above the root chakra. It’s energy is associated with male and female sexuality, survival, and creativity.

CHAKRA 3 | Solar PlexusAssociation to Core:  Chest
It is located at the mid-thoracic area near your solar plexus. It’s energy is associated with your will, self-confidence, and personal power.

CHAKRA 4 | The HeartAssociation to Core:  Chest
It is located in the center of your chest, at the first, second, and third thoracic vertebrae. It’s energy is associated with love, compassion, joy, and sorrow.

CHAKRA 5 | The ThroatAssociation to Core:  Head
It is located in your throat at the third cervical vertebra. It’s energy is associated with ability to be expressive, to speak up and stand for yourself and for what you believe to be true and real.

CHAKRA 6 | Brow or Third EyeAssociation to Core:  Head
It is located at the first cervical vertebra. It’s energy is associated with your connection to your intuition.

CHAKRA 7 | CrownAssociation to Core:  Head
It is located at the point of your pineal gland. It’s energy is associated with your connection to divine spirit, and soul energy.

She also covered the vowel sounds associated with each chakra, as have I in a previous post.

So along with studying what makes up the physical body, how it is put together, and how it was designed to move, we also studying the energy body.  We move in ways to keep the energy flowing and balanced and we can add sounds to help with that.  Nia is based on Western science as well as ancient beliefs.  Nia White Belt Principle 8 – Core / The Three Body Weights is a very deep principle indeed.

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