Terre Pruitt's Blog

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

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch!

    Nia: Thurs at 9 am

    Yin Yoga: Mons at 11:30 am

    Gentle Yoga: Tues at 10:30 am and Thurs at 6:00 pm

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:30 am

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

    I am also available for private Nia / yoga / Personal Training!

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • My Bloggey Past

  • ******

    Chose a month above to visit archives, or click below to visit a page.

Posts Tagged ‘Free Dance’

A Puzzle And Two Websites

Posted by terrepruitt on June 25, 2015

I am venturing a declaration, that we have all heard that exercising the brain helps it.  Whether it helps stave off memory loss, helps keep our memory sharp, or just helps keep our brain sharp, I bet we have all heard “exercising” it helps.  I bet one of the “exercises” you’ve heard suggested is puzzles.  Brain puzzles, as an example and as suggested in my last post.  Well, as I was trying to come up with a picture for the post, I was thinking I wanted to have a Nia puzzle.  I came across a cool website where you can create a word search puzzle.  I quickly decided NOT to use the puzzle I made as a picture because I wanted to make it a blog post!  I decided to make a picture for that last post, so I turned to another website that I have been using lately to create collages.  So this post is like a “Three-fer”, a puzzle, the website where you can create your own puzzle, and the website where you can create collages.

And, yes, you can Google all of this for yourself, but you know me, I like to share.  I know that I learn things from blogs I read.  I learn things that are common knowledge to a lot of people, but are new to me, so I like to share because I have faith that sometimes I am sharing something new to someone!

So, here is the Nia Word Search Puzzle.  The words all have to do with Nia:Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose,  Nia at the San Jose Community Centers, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex City of San Jose, San Jose Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique

 

Aikido – one of the nine movement forms
Awareness – a goal of Nia, to bring awareness to your body, awareness to your movements
Cardio – what Nia is, it is a cardio dance workout
Chakras – energy points danced in Nia
Crawling – one of the Nia 5 Stages, and something sometimes included in Floorplay
Creeping – one of the Nia 5 Stages, and something sometimes included in Floorplay
Dance – what Nia is
Embryonic – one of the Nia 5 Stages, and something sometimes included in Floorplay
Exercise – what Nia is
Fitness – what Nia encourages
Flexibility – one of the Nia 5 Sensations, something you will experience in a Nia class
FreeDance – a technique/practice used in Nia
Jazz – one of the nine movement forms
Joyful – what Nia can help you feel
Mindfulness – a goal of Nia, to bring mindfulness to your movements, mindfulness to your body
Mobility – one of the Nia 5 Sensations, something you will experience in a Nia class
Movement – something we do in a Nia class
Nia – the Technique, the form of cardio dance
RAW – a technique/practice used by Nia teachers when learning a Nia routine/music
Stability – one of the Nia 5 Sensations, something you will experience in a Nia class
Strength – one of the Nia 5 Sensations, something you will experience in a Nia class
Technique – Nia Technique
Workout – what Nia is, it is a cardio dance workout
Yoga – one of the nine movement forms

The website to make your own is: http://puzzlemaker.discoveryeducation.com/code/BuildWordSearch.asp

The collages are super easy to make, you just drag the photos you want to your browser.  You can pick a background if you want.  You can turn the photos, you can resize them, you can bring them to the front or the back.  All basic things.  I have several of these types of applications on my iPhone, but I didn’t have anything, but MS Word on my computer.  So this website is a great help to me.  Easy, quick, and free.  And I am not loading my photos onto their site. Website for the collages is:  http://www.photocollage.net/

Yay!  Exercise your brain!  Go create stuff!

 

The solution is at on my website (click here).

Posted in Misc, Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Lateral Travel

Posted by terrepruitt on February 11, 2014

In Nia we have a base of 52 Moves. Not surprising they are called The 52 Moves of Nia. As I have stated before they are not unique to Nia. You have probably done some of them at one point in your life. If you have taken dance or you participate in a group exercise class that is dance oriented then you more than likely have done some of them. They are just gathered into a group for Nia because of their benefits and fun. So they are included in the Nia Routines. Not all of them are in every routine, but a good portion appear in each routine. Plus whenever there is Free Dance they might make an appearance. One of the base moves . . . . moves we do primarily with the base of our body . . . is Lateral Traveling.

Lateral Traveling is specific and different from Traveling In Directions. Traveling in Directions is a move done in all directions . . . . Lateral Traveling is done to the side. The Nia Technique (have you gotten your copy yet? Click here to go to Amazon to order your copy.) describes Lateral Travel as a step together step or a grapevine. The specifics are to start in a closed stance, then take one step to the side, then place your feet together (moving the other leg to the first leg that stepped), then take one step to the side, then move the leg toward the other one, but instead of placing it next to your leg cross it back.

A grapevine is where you step one leg to the side then the next step is BEHIND, then step to the side, where the next step goes depends. Sometimes you can land on the heel or behind or with the knee up. Grapevines are a nice replacement for four point turns. There are many reasons why people don’t turn so using this lateral move, the grapevine, is perfect.

With both methods the instructions say to use your hands to lead you. Have them out in the direction you are going. The instructions also say, “When you step behind, step onto the back ball of the foot and keep your knees spring loaded and your spine vertical.” For clarification, the “back ball of the foot” is the foot that is in the back or behind.

This is a “two side” move. To practice you do to one side then the other. To the left, then to the right. (Or to the right, then the left.)

So this is the specific Lateral Travel: Step together step or grapevine. I have found my self using the phrase “travel laterally” at times when I am leading my San Jose Nia class (or any Nia class for that matter) and I am not instructing them to do the specific Lateral Travel. But I guess that is the difference. There is “travel laterally” and do the “Lateral Travel” move.

Many moves in Nia are good for the coordination. This is one. Step together step is not necessarily a difficult move but depending on the speed and what comes before it and after it, it can call upon your coordination. Although, I would say this is one of the easier 52 Moves of Nia.

Varying the speed and adding some movement to the body can change it up a bit and perhaps add a some challenge to it.

So there you have it another move in Nia’s 52 Moves.

You probably find yourself doing this one often, huh? Even when you are not on the dance floor?

Posted in 52 Moves (of Nia), Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

In Nia We Travel

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: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Messing Up Is Fun

Posted by terrepruitt on October 24, 2013

After Nia class once a month we meet for a visit.  We walk to a coffee house and get a beverage.  Some of us have coffee, some of us have tea, some of us have nothing, but that is not the point.  The point is that we visit.  It took almost two years for me to learn one of my students is a Naturopathic Doctor. As the teacher, often times I am busy with “teacher/business” duties.  I miss some of the interaction and conversations that my students have.  It is so fabulous to see friendships formed and conversations happen.  But I wanted to be in on some of the conversations and I wanted my students to be able to share with each other as a group.  I love when I can make a connection . . . when one person can meet the needs or desires of another.  So, so, so fulfilling.  It is difficult to learn about people while dancing . . . so an after-class visit is just the thing.  Students can share what they do and what is going on in their lives and we can get to know each other a bit off of the dance floor.  Also, I learn a lot of other things about my students and what they like about Nia.

I was sharing with one of my students something about the moves.  I was using a specific example and I said, “You know when I am talking about because you were giggling.”  And she said, “I was giggling because I messed up.”  She said after we did the move over and over and over she was still getting it wrong and so she was laughing.  She said messing up is one of her favorite parts of Nia.  I LOVE that.  I love that she “gets” that part of Nia.  Nia is not about doing it right.  Nia is about moving.  Nia understands that sometimes for so many reasons, you just don’t get it.  It could be a move you can normally do in your sleep but for some reason at that moment it is escaping you.  Instead of getting upset and frustrated with yourself and STOPPING, embrace the mistake and keep moving.  Use the opportunity to do the move in a totally different way.  If you are still able to move with the count, but the choreography is escaping you for the moment, move in a different way but with the same count.  If you are able to do the movement, but it is the count that you are having issues with, vary your speed even MORE.  Go faster or slower . . . what have you got to lose, not the count because you’ve already lost that!  Just IN JOY it, be in joy.  Have fun.

I love, love, love that my student loves messing up.  She embraces so much that is Nia.  She takes that as an opportunity to play.  To “be a kid again” and just not care.  You know how kids are — before they are taught differently — they just move and dance in their own way and they don’t care what opinion people have.  Also in the messing up and going with it, it is a lesson in letting go . . . . letting go of judgment, letting go of feeling you have to be perfect, letting go of making your body do something it is clearly not doing well – at the moment.  It is freeing to just move the best you can.

Now this is different from Nia Free Dance.  I mean Free Dance is where we are purposefully dancing to stimulate movement creativity, not dancing in a choreographed way.  Where we don’t think and we just move.  This, when you just can’t get a move and give into NOT getting it, is you dancing what you are capable at the moment in the choreography.  Get through it then join back in.  I would think you would keep trying to do it or continue with the modification you made, but it is not free dance.  It is more of a embrace-the-mess-up-and-have-fun kind of dance.

I was just very happy to hear that she was ok with messing up.  She was ok with allowing herself the freedom to not be perfect.  She was embracing and celebrating movement for Joy and not for moving exactly like the choreography.  She was having fun.  Awesome!

So do you enjoy messing up in a situation like an dance workout class?  Can you laugh it off and keep going?  Can you allow yourself to dance your way and get back on track when you are able?  Can you see the difference between this and Free Dance?

Posted in Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Don’t Be Afraid Of Spirit

Posted by terrepruitt on February 9, 2013

Recently a Nia student came up to me after a Nia class to ask me a question.  She said that she had talked to another woman about attending a Nia class but the woman didn’t want to because we said “Om!”  My student asked me if Nia was religious.  I shared with her what happened in the Nia White Belt Intensive I attended and my thoughts on it.  What happened in the Nia White Belt Intensive I attended in December 2008, was Carlos Rosas asked one of the intensive participants what was in Nia.  Her answer was “God.”  Carlos said, “NO!  There is no God in Nia!”  I don’t know Carlos’ religious beliefs, if he has any, or how he feels about God or religion, but I think he was saying that there is no religion in Nia.  It is not associated with any type of religion.  It is meant for everyBODY and everyone and people of all faiths and all belief systems can participate and enjoy Nia.  It truly is based on the design of the body.  It is not based on ANY religion or God.

I personally feel that if you have God or any belief system in you then you will bring Him/it into whatever it is you are doing.  But that is not a reflection on the event or activity.  With any belief if you believe it you are going to carry it with you.  So if you believe in God, Gods, Buddha, Allah, or whatever that will come with you into Nia.  But Nia has none of that as a part of it.  What Nia DOES have as a part of it is spirit.  But that should not be confused with any type of religious spirit or supernatural spirit.  Wiki states:  “The English word spirit comes from the Latin spiritus, meaning ‘breath'”.  And an online dictionary says:  “The vital principle or animating force within living beings.”  Yet some people often think of spirit as religious, as in the Holy Spirit, or otherworldly, as in ghostly spirits.

Because of that conversation I had with one of my students I had been thinking of this and in a class I said, “Let your spirit out.”  And I noticed a few students stiffen.  And I continued on, saying, “That is not to be meant religious or supernatural, I mean spirit as in ‘your school spirit’, when people say ‘show some school spirit no one gets all wiggy’.  It’s like that.  THAT type of spirit.”  And I saw people relax.  I saw some say, “Oh.”  And then I saw some spirit.

I think of spirit as a passion or your inner child.  It is the part of you that wants to slide down the banister, run up the down escalator, balance on a curb, jump in the puddles, take your shoes off and slide in stocking feet across the length of the mall, or say “WAAAAHOOOOO!”  It is the breath that we often hold in.  If your beliefs have your spirit saying or doing something in class then that is fine, but that is not to say that your beliefs are a part of Nia, that is a part of YOU that you bring to Nia.

The type of spirit you would have with school spirit, class spirit, and/or team spirit that is the spirit Nia calls upon and what Nia invites to be released in a Nia class.  Let your inner essence dance and be free, don’t be afraid . . . . . . let go.

Posted in Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Free Nia During Bay Area Dance Week

Posted by terrepruitt on April 17, 2012

Every year there is a Bay Area Dance Week. This year is the 14th annual dance week and it is being presented by Dancers’ Group. This will be the fourth year that I have offered my morning Nia Classes to New Students for free. I did it last year, but I didn’t post about it. I figured I should post about it to remind people it is happening. My 9:00 am Nia Classes on Monday, April 23rd and Wednesday, April 25th at Halanda Studio will be free to New Students. Here is another opportunity to try Nia for free.

In addition to Nia there are many FREE Classes during National Dance Week at Halanda Studio. Halanda Studio is owned by two women who rent out the studio by the hour. The variety of classes that are offered at the studio is very diverse. As you can see by the schedule of free classes there is several types of Belly Dancing from beginning to Intermediate/Advanced. Also being offered for free during Bay Area Dance Week is Hot Hula, Yoga, Zumba, Bollywood Fitness, and I’ve already mentioned Nia.

While I want you to attend classes at Halanda and in particular MY Nia class, my dancing spirit has to bring to your attention to the fact that from April 20 – April 29, 2012 it is Bay Area Dance Week. So there are FREE classes ALL OVER THE BAY AREA!!! According to the Bay Ara Dance booklet there are more than 650 groups, artists, and organizations participating. There are over 100 forms of dance to enjoy. Not only are there free classes but there are free performances.

The opening event is Friday, April 20th at Union Square Park in San Francisco. The closing event on Sunday, April 29 will be at 2 pm in Union Square Park in San Francisco where there will be simple circle dance for peace among people and peace with Earth. Looks like this dance will be led by the amazing Anna Halprin. She is 92 years old and still dancing and teaching dance . . . now that is what I call amazing!

Below is the current list of FREE classes (as of Tuesday, April 17, 2012) being offered at Halanda Studio in San Jose during Bay Area Dance Week (Friday, April 20th through Sunday, April 29th – 2012)

Saturday, April 21:
9:30am-10:30am: Bellydance Basics with Amanda
10:30am-12:00pm: Bellydance & Beyond with Amanda
12:00pm-1:00pm: Bellydance Fusion Technique with Michelle
1:00pm-2:00pm: No Rules Bellydance with Michelle
2:30pm-3:30pm: Tunisian Folk Dance with Pamela

Sunday, April 22:
2:00pm-3pm: Hot Hula Fitness with Marie

Monday, April 23:
9:00am-10:00am: Nia with Terre
4:00pm-5:00pm: Silk Road & Middle Eastern dance for Kids with Farima
7:00pm-8:00pm: Bellydance – All Levels with Hala
8:00pm-9:00pm: Bellydance – Intermediate Technique & Drills with Hala
9:00pm-10:00pm: Bellydance – Choreography with Hala

Tuesday, April 24:
5:00pm-6:15pm : Hatha Yoga – Mixed Levels with Dahlia
6:30pm-7:30pm: Bellydance Workout with Natika
7:30pm-8:30pm: Tribal Fusion with Natika
8:30pm-9:30pm Fan Veil Dance with Natika
9:30pm-10:30pm Silk Road Fusion Dance with Farima

Wednesday, April 25
:
9:00am-10:00am: Nia with Terre
6:00pm-7:00pm: Bellydance with Setareh
7:00pm-8:30pm: Hala Dance Company Rehearsal with Hala
8:30pm-9:30pm: Basic Belly with Naima

Thursday, April 26:
6:30pm-7:30pm: Killer Drillz Level 1 with Vanessa
8:30pm-9:30pm: Dances of Persia & the Silk Road with Farima

Friday, April 27
:
7:00pm-8:00pm: Zumba Fitness with Melissa
8:00pm-9:00pm: Tunisian Folk Dance with Pamela

Saturday, April 28:
8:00am-9:15am: Power Flow Yoga with Delanie
12:00pm-1:00pm: Bellydance Fusion Technique with Michelle
1:00pm-2:00pm: No Rules Bellydance with Michelle

Sunday, April 29:
9:30am-10:30am: Bollywood Fitness with FusionBeatz

There are other classes taught at Halanda, but the classes listed here are the ones that are participating in Bay Area Dance Week.

Aside from Nia :-), what classes are you going to try out?

Dance Exercies, Nia, Nia Campbell, Campbell Nia, Nia classes in Campbell, evening Nia, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia,

Posted in Exercise and Working Out, Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Choreography – The Accidental “Click” – FreeDance Stage 7

Posted by terrepruitt on January 5, 2012

The principles of the different belts in Nia provide a foundation for our Nia practice.  There are 13 Principles in the Nia White Belt.  The fourth principle is FreeDance, this principle has eight stages.  Eight things you can focus on that can become a part of FreeDance.  When I attended my Nia White Belt Intensive we danced through these stages when we danced FreeDance.  Dancing through the stages is something that can be done for fun.  It doesn’t have to be because you do Nia.  It can help you express yourself by turning on some music and applying the stages to the music.  Dancing through the stages is also used as a technique for Nia teachers to become better aquainted with the Nia music.  It is a tool that can help in learning a Nia routine.  The seventh stage of FreeDance is Choreography, the tagline is:  The Accidental “Click”.

I mentioned in my post about the eighth stage of FreeDance, Nia Class – Levels 1, 2, 3, that I often skip over dancing the first six stages of FreeDance when learning a Nia routine.  Part of the reason is because I actually forgot about it being a step.  I don’t skip them entirely, I do FreeDance about four of the stages to the music, but I don’t do all of them.  I do believe that doing all six can be a great tool, so as I mentioned, I am working on implementing this action back into my “learning of a Nia routine”.  Today in fact I started employing it with a the next routine I am learning.

Stage 7 of FreeDance, Choreography – The Accidental “Click”, is something that probably happens to all dancers and group fitness teachers alike.  It kind of seems to happen in more than just dance actually, but with dancers the “click” is to the music.  Often with the eight stages of FreeDance you are using more than one stage at a time.  With experiencing the accidental click there is going to be stage two going on.  There is going to be a lot of listening.  The listening is to ALL of the music; the silences, the beat, the tempo, the instruments, the words the vibrations–all of it.  With Nia we are taught to dance to all music, not just the kind that we turn on and can’t help but move too.  We are taught to move to music we might not actually like.  Many people are the type that when you turn music on something on their body starts moving.  A foot might start moving, a head might bob, fingers might tap, this happens often.  There seems to be some songs that EVERYBODY moves to, they just can’t help it.  But then there is music that often clears the dance floor.  The “everybody move to” music is easy to dance to.  But the floor clearing kind sometimes can be difficult to dance to.  In Nia we are taught to dance to it all.  We are taught to listen to it all.

I will be the first to admit that sometimes there are songs I don’t like in a Nia routine.  Sometimes there is just one noise that is to incessant or a beat that feels off, whatever the reason, I don’t like it all.  Sometimes I like the music but not the moves.   Sometimes I just can’t get the choreography and the music to mesh—in my head or in my body, whatever it just doesn’t work.  So I keep doing that kata until it “clicks”.  Eventually it will because Debbie Rosas Stewart and Carlos AyaRosas are great at creating routines, but sometimes it takes me a bit.  The “click” is what state seven is about.

Stage seven is connecting to the sensation of your body.  I think that often times I “don’t like it” (it being either the music or the move or whatever it is that is hanging me up) is all in my head.  So if and when I stop thinking and get into the sensation of the body, I will find that the moves DO go with the music, I was just thinking they didn’t.  Amazing how the thinking gets in the way of moving so often.

Here you have it the seventh stage of Nia FreeDance.  Yes, I am posting about them backwards, from 8 to 1.  It just happened that way.  The days I went to type up a post my eyes fell on “Nia Class – Leve 1, 2, 3 for inspiration.  So now I am going through the stages backwards.  I bet even if you aren’t trying to learn a dance routine you can think of or recognize things in your life that click.  Could be you are trying to remember a way to do something and you do it over and over and keep referring back to the instructions then one day “click”.  In Nia it’s Choreography where we eventually find The Accidental “Click”, but in life it could be with anything.  “Clicks” happen all the time.  Even if you aren’t learning a dance routine, you’re familiar with that click, right?

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

Nia Isn’t . . .

Posted by terrepruitt on May 20, 2010

Part of the purpose of my blog is to share what Nia is and to invite people to take one of my classes. I have learned that when teaching people it is sometimes helpful to share what something ISN’T to help them understand what it is.

Nia isn’t a class where you won’t sweat.

Nia isn’t a class where the teacher shouts at you to motivate you.

Nia isn’t a class where you just think about moving.

Nia isn’t Jazzercise.

Nia isn’t sitting around.

Nia isn’t about pain.

Nia isn’t hard jumping.

Nia isn’t Tai Chi.

Nia isn’t Tae Kwon Do.

Nia isn’t Aikido.

Nia isn’t a mindless workout.

Nia isn’t Zumba.

Nia isn’t taught to Nia teachers in a day.

Nia isn’t new to the fitness world.

Nia isn’t Jazz Dance.

Nia isn’t Modern Dance.

Nia isn’t judgmental.

Nia isn’t a strict combination of linear movements.

Nia isn’t a class where you are told EXACTLY how to move your own body.

Nia isn’t Yoga.

Nia isn’t stiff.

Nia isn’t rough.

Nia isn’t (necessarily) just a workout.

Nia isn’t JUST Free Dance.

The BEST way to learn about what Nia isn’t and what Nia is, is to go to a class and see for yourself.  Nia class finderWant to find a class near you?

Posted in Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments »

Nia Free Dance

Posted by terrepruitt on May 14, 2009

In Nia (TM) we have FreeDance.  It is not easy for most people to do.  It is not easy for me to do.  I am still learning.  With Nia the purpose of FreeDance is “to stimulate movement creativity”.  Whoa.  Stimulate movement creativity.

Per an online dictionary:

Stimulate:  to excite to activity or growth or to greater activity

Movement:  the act or process of moving; especially: change of place or position or posture from the same source as above

And creativity:   the quality of being creative or the ability to create

So we FreeDance to excite growth or greater activity in changing our place, position, or postures into new places, positions or postures.  Hmmmm.

I will take this time to remind you that our bodies are built to move.  And they are built to move a certain way.  Our joints allow for certain types and amounts of movement.  Now barring any ailment or disease our bodies should move like they are built.  But we often don’t move that way.  Our way of life keeps us from moving as our bodies were built.  Sometimes social stigma keeps us from moving the way our joints would like.  So in FreeDance you are invited and encouraged to break habits and to move like your body was built.

I have experienced that for some, moving their head is a new thing.  Think of the old way models were trained with a book on the head, some of us were taught to walk and be in that position.  Can’t move your head with a book balanced on it.  So moving your head could be something new in FreeDance you could do and be amazed at the result.  Something as simple as moving your head, breaking that straight neck habit could release oodles of tension.

Same with rigidly straight spines or tight backs.  When you Free Dance you are not dancing like you would in a club, you are pushing the limits, you are moving your body to experiment with it.  You are Stimulated Movement Creativity.

There is so much more to say on this.  This is Nia White Belt Principal number 4.  This principal has 8 stages, so that alone is a lot to talk about, but for now, I will leave it at FreeDance – To Stimulate Movement Creativity.  See if you can add a little FreeDance into your day.  It doesn’t have to be wild, it could be done where no one even notices, just move one move a little different than you normally do, and you will be on your way to FreeDance!

Posted in FreeDance, Nia, Nia White Belt Principles | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »