Terre Pruitt's Blog

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

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch! SIX group classes a week!

    Nia: Tues and Thurs at 9 am, Fri at 10:15 am

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

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:15 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!

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  • My Bloggey Past

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Posts Tagged ‘Natural Time’

Different Ways To Recycle

Posted by terrepruitt on October 23, 2017

I like it when I have an idea for a blog post and I don’t have to think about what to write. I wish that were always the case. I like to post on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, but I just don’t always have that many posts in me. I have been struggling lately with posting on Mondays when I have been at my dad’s all weekend. Going through stuff and getting rid of items is proving more difficult than one would think. So many people and entities say to recycle and donate, but that is harder said than done. While trying to think of something to post about I got to wondering what I posted about on this day (or close to it) in the years past. So . . . speaking of recycling. (See how I did that?)

In 2009 I posted about the free songs iTunes used to give away. Do they still do that? Back then they used to give out cards at Starbucks and they had a code to a free song. I was introduced to a lot of artists and songs that way that I still listen to. I also posted about Collage Video which is a website you can get exercise DVDs from. I had liked the way they described the videos with a break down of minutes of each cycles.

In 2010, October 23rd fell on a Saturday and I was posting on Saturdays back then. I posted about Nutrition Facts of Bell Peppers. I LOVE bell peppers.

In 2011, the 23rd fell on a Sunday, on October 22nd, a Saturday, I posted about being Ready To Receive. In my post I talked about when we first experience or hear about something sometimes we put up our barriers and we don’t want to accept it, so we really have to be ready and “open” to receive in order to actually receive and learn. I also mentioned Natural Time and how we are ready and open in our own natural time. While I wasn’t talking exactly about what was going on at the time, it was somewhat related to it. October 2011 is the year my mother-in-law was in a fatal automobile accident. She died October 23, 2011, six years ago today.

October 2012 I was making smoothies. In September of that year I had gotten my super blender for my birthday and I was making and drinking smoothies. I found that during that period I did believe the science behind the need to rotate the vegetables according to the family, but I never quite got it right. I wrote about it in my The Greens Go Round And Round post, but for me it was easier said than done.

October 23, 2013 fell on a Wednesday and I wasn’t posting on Wednesday back then, I was posting on Tuesdays and Thursday. On Tuesday the 22nd I posted about a yoga pose. I posted Icky Name, Great Pose which is about the locust pose (Salabhasana) where you lift your legs and chest up off the ground creating a back bend. On Wednesday I posted about how Messing Up Is Fun. It is about Nia and what a student felt about it.

I was actually thinking about my post from October 23, 2014 just the other day! But I didn’t know that. I was thinking about the “tea” that I had heard about that one blogger drinks when she is sick. She calls it Sick People Tea. I wrote a little bit about it and the oregano that is part of the recipe.

October 23, 2015 was a Friday. I wasn’t posting on Fridays back then. But we had our cats and on the 22nd I posted about them. The post includes some of the best pictures I have ever taken of them. They are pretty darn beautiful. On the 24th I posted about the difference between what are labeled Leisure Classes with the City of San Jose and what are Group Ex classes. Although the City of San Jose no longer has the “Group Ex” program we have SJCITY Fit, which is similar. You might want to check it out as their annual membership is a GREAT deal!

In 2016 I was posting on my current schedule of Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. The 23rd of October fell on a Sunday so the closest post to the 23rd is the 24th and I posted about Sunburns And Ants.

I do hope you will have a moment to click over and check out one or two of the posts from Octobers past.   Which one  has you wanting to click over and read it?  Perhaps you can click over and like it and leave a comment.

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

My Cootie Catcher For Nia

Posted by terrepruitt on April 22, 2016

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitIn my last post I told you how I was recently reminded of the Cootie Catcher.  I explained how you can make your own.  Did you?  What did you use it for?  Well, I also mentioned that I would be using mine for picking a focus and an intent for Nia class.  Well, I used it today and I liked it.  It worked.  In Nia we set a focus and an intent for each class, which allows us so many different things.  It could help us move differently to a familiar routine, it could allow us to help work out some kinks in the body and mind, it can do many things.  It is a powerful tool in the Nia tool box.  Most often I ask my students if they have anything they would like to focus on.  Then we go from there deciding an intent.  One of the most requested focuses is shoulders.  So many of us hold tension in our shoulders.  Rarely is there a time when no one has something they want to focus on, but I thought it would be fun to mix it up giving us an alternative for picking the focus of the class.  Plus I thought it would be a good way to get some focuses in use that we don’t use that often.  So I made a cootie catcher to assist us.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitI wrote four of the seven Nia Class cycles on the outside.  I used the number of the cycle.  Warm-up is cycle 3, Get Moving is cycle 4, Cool Down is cycle 5, and Floorplay is cycle 6.  I could have just used numbers but I wanted to remind people that Nia has cycles.  I wish I could have used all seven.  So we have someone pick the cycle, then we open and close the catcher that number of times.  Then someone picks a focus or I might have them choose a number . . . that way they won’t really know what focus they are picking.  Ha, I will probably do it both ways.  Anyway . . .we now have our focus.  Then the catcher is opened and closed as many times as the corresponding number.  Then someone picks another number and we open that triangle and read the intent that is behind it and that is our intent for the class.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitToday in class we picked Natural Time . . . to empower us to connect with our body.  NICE!

Each focus can work nicely with each intent.  So no matter what combination is picked it will work.

You may notice the underlining on the focuses (Joints is underlined, Extension is underlined), originally I was going to use the words, spelling them out to open and close the catcher, but I decided to go with the numbers.  But again, I might try that way, too.  There are so many ways you can do it.  That is one thing that makes it so fun!

There are many ways we can decide on a focus and intent, this is just one.  If you are going to make one to use to help with a focus and intent you need FOUR things for the outside (that is where I put the cycles).  Then you need EIGHT focuses and EIGHT intents.  So that would be the same formula for anything you are going to use the catcher for.  Four, eight, eight.

I would love to make more and have all kinds of different focuses and intents.  So, you Nia teachers and Nia students, share with me your favorite focus and intent!

 

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, PiYo, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

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

The Nia FreeDance Playshop Was Awesome!

Posted by terrepruitt on April 9, 2015

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, PiYoAt the end of March (2015) there were two Special Nia Events in Campbell, California.  They were special for a lot of reasons.  One reason being is because a visiting teacher was going to be doing them.  It is always special when someone who does not live in the area comes and shares their talents.  Another reason is because the Nia Class is a one-of-a-kind-creation.  The visiting teacher created the routine and was going to lead us through it.  ANOTHER reason, they were special, was that one of the classes was a workshop or a playshop as we like to call them in Nia.  And it was also, the creation of the visiting teacher and it was something that I think anyone that dances Nia can benefit from.  Another reason they special was they were the first Nia Events that I produced.  Produced meaning, when I heard that the Nia Teacher who created the Playshop was coming to my area I contacted him to invite him to do these events.  I secured the location, I created marketing material, I promoted the events (as I am sure you have seen, I posted about them often), I worked to get participants to the events, and I worried about how it would all turn out. So, two special Nia Events.  I have posted two separate posts (What Did Frankie Say? and Dancing, Learning, Posting, Editing) about the Nia Class that was held on Friday, March 27, 2015.  This post is about the Playshop.

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, PiYoThe Playshop on Saturday, March 28, 2015 was a playshop regarding Nia FreeDance.  In a Nia class, there is normally choreography.  Nia Headquarters and the training staff create Nia Routines.  There are Nia Routine DVDs that Nia Teachers purchase.  We learn the routines and lead our students through them.  We have a lot of freedom with our classes.  We can follow the routines “exactly” or we can play with them.  We can create our own routines from a mix of Nia Routines or we can take the Nia choreography and add it to other music.  Or we can create our own routines with other non-Nia music.  But with almost every routine there is FreeDance.

FreeDance is where there is not specific choreography.  You are not told exactly how to move.  Now, I have heard the creators of Nia express very different opinions on FreeDance.  I heard one of them say in the past that FreeDance should ALWAYS be guided and the other one say that FreeDance can just be free.  So . . . there are different opinions on the matter.  I think that in keeping with the Nia White Belt Principle #4, Nia FreeDance does not need to be guided because “Anything Goes . . . movement-wise”.  But FreeDance in an exercise class is a challenge to many people.  There are many reasons as to why people cannot or will not just move their bodies in their own way in an exercise class.

This playshop was brought here to help people with that.  Many of the tools (ideas) Jason shared were covered in the Nia Intensives.  So if you have not attended a Nia White Belt Intensive or Nia Blue Belt Intensive, they would be new to you.  They are GREAT!  And they were the reminder and push I needed to pull them out to use them.  The most valuable things he shared with me though were not necessarily the guiding ideas, but more about how the individuals in class can be left to be.

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When I see people in my class not moving or seeming to struggle with FreeDance, I take responsibility and blame myself for not getting them to move with my suggestions and guidance.  But he brought up some very good points that I will now take to class and practice just letting those people be where they are, at that moment, in class.

Although I will still strive for the “When Harry Met Sally Moment” of wanting people to look at us and say, “I’ll have what SHE’S having.” I will also take into consideration that they could very well be doing my suggestion, but it looks different to me than I would do it.  Or that they are just not in a place to FreeDance.  Could be a case of Natural Time.

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, PiYoI learned a lot.  I had a lot of fun.  I am excited for Jason to come back again!  This video and the video on my website are the same song.  As I only stopped participating one time to video.  The videos are at different times so they are a little different.  Also shown here are a few of the pictures I took during the Playshop.  I took more pictures during the hour Frankie Say Nia class than I did during the 3.75 hours of the Nia FreeDance Playshop.

There might be one more blog post about this, but we will see.  These are the extent of pictures and videos.  Enjoy!

Please share your comments.  Please ask if you have any questions!
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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

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

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

Doesn’t Mean You Die Even When You Decide To

Posted by terrepruitt on April 1, 2014

HOLY MOLY!!!! Sigh. Ok, I feel that since I started it, I need to continue with it. Right? I mean, it is not my intention to make my blog all about death, but since I asked for love and support, I think it is only fair that I give you all an update. I sat with my mother in her hospital room for roughly seven days. During that time she was presented with an option that would have been extremely painful and risky. The surgeon gave three scenarios that could occur and two of them pretty much ended with immediate death, so she opted to skip the procedure and just spend her last days with a tube down her throat, unable to speak and unable to cry. She entertained visitors. Not many because it was exhausting to her. She also was asked to pick the day on which she would have the tube removed. The thoughts were that her trachea is so encroached with cancer and would be so traumatized by the tube that when they pulled it out she would not have much time before she died.

Regarding the procedure mentioned — for those that are curious — it was a stent. A stent was to be placed in the trachea. The idea was that it would hold open the collapsing trachea so that she could breathe. But, it would only be for a few days. The stent is not a permanent or even semi-permanent solution. It is also metal and rigid, it would not have flexed and moved. It would have been very uncomfortable/painful, because the trachea moves.

She did not want to go. She had a lot left she wanted to do. Knowing she couldn’t do ALL that she wanted to do before she died, she thought she could at least do SOMETHINGS. So she decided to have the tube removed on Monday. She made that decision on a Wednesday. It is MY belief that if she knew all that she would have to go through between Wednesday, March 26th, and Monday, March 31st she would not have picked that day. But she wanted to at least get her Easter cards written out. She also wanted to advise me of who gets what in the stack of Christmas gifts she already bought. She also wanted to spend as much time with her family as she could — who wouldn’t, right? But in order to do so she suffered a lot. The medical professionals taking care of her were always there to administer the drugs she needed so she wouldn’t be in pain, but those drugs made her groggy and unable to think clearly so sometimes I think she held off a bit. Plus the procedures that need to be done to allow someone to breath through a tube are not comfortable. So anyway . . .

Hand holding - for post 04.01.14We got to visit for several days. As I have said several times, she was unable to talk with the tube in her throat. She also was unable to cry because the contractions that happen when one cries caused too much pain. Normally I would not tell someone not to cry because crying is such a great release. I believe crying is good for the BMES – ha, yes, that is a Nia acronym. It helps clear the tear ducts and allows for a physical release. Crying helps clear the mind also. It is an emotional release as well as a spirit helper so to me, it is a good thing. So if you want to cry, cry — except while you are driving or you have tube down your throat and it hurts too much.

I was there until Friday night. I got home around midnight on Friday. I came home to do some laundry, teach a yoga class, do some paper work, and pick up my husband. We went back up Saturday night. We visited all day Sunday and waited around for 1:00 pm on Monday. We all were under the impression that at 1:00 pm it would happen. But we all forgot that “hospital time” is not exact. They do things — even scheduled things — around other things. So our 1:00 pm scheduled extubation turned into 2:28 pm. I trusted the medical staff (although it turned out not to be who we were told it would be) would see that she was not in pain, but we still didn’t know if there would be any gasping and gagging and who knows. I was confident that it would not be a long time after. I saw the MRI of the trachea/esophagus area. Nurses and doctors helped convince me that it would be quick. Well it was not. We are going into our 29th hour.  While my mom is so medicated she doesn’t know what is going on and she feels no pain . . . this is NOT what she would have wanted. Lingering on. In fact every visitor that came to visit her while I was there, her answer to their comment of “I’m praying for you.” was “Pray that I don’t linger.” Again, I am at a loss.

Yes, we all have ideas as to why she has not died . . . . she is not ready . . . . she is doing it in her own time (something we call Natural Time in Nia) . . . ALL TYPES of ideas . . . but really we don’t know. All that I know is that this is really hard on my dad. This is not a case where she might revive and be ok. This is not a hopeful, “Oh, I’ll sit by your bedside until you are awake.” This is a grueling death watch. Judge me anyway you want, I left last night. I didn’t want to see her as I know she would not want to be. I didn’t want to hear the “death rattle”. Ugh!  Since it is hard on my dad, if it drags on until the weekend I will go back up.

Well, this post is way longer than I like to have my post, but I really wanted to let you know what the status is. Also . . . I guess it helps to write it out. One more thing . . . I believe that I would not have been able to handle this if it weren’t for all of you. So many people have “come out of the wood work” to share and support and deliver sparkles. So thank you all for sharing and caring and giving. I have not been told I am loved or said, “I love you” this much in as many days before in my life.

Please keep up with those thoughts, prayers, stories, sparkles, and all that jazz.  It REALLY helps!

 

Posted in Diane Bacho | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments »

I Changed My Mind, I DO Teach Nia

Posted by terrepruitt on January 18, 2014

I know – well, I am pretty confident that I have mentioned before in a blog post that I don’t think of myself as teaching people Nia.  Even though I say I teach Nia, I usually prefer to say I lead Nia.  I wish I could find that post because I would like to check what I said exactly because I am feeling a bit different these days.  Or maybe I have it clarified in my mind better.  I believe I said that I don’t like to say I teach Nia because I feel that a dance teacher is one that demonstrates the steps and then has the student try to do them while the teacher watches.  Then maybe the teacher demonstrates again and the student does it again and then maybe there is some adjusting done by the teacher.  Or even in a group dance class setting the move is done over and over until it is somewhat learned and then the next move is added on.  Sometimes there is a sequence of moves that is demonstrated then practiced over a few times and then a new sequence added on.  That is what I think of as teaching dance.  So in THAT way I don’t teach Nia, but I DO teach Nia.

I do not show the move then have the students practice it over and over before we dance it, but sometimes when the song allows we do a preview and practice.  It could be that the song has a long introduction in which there is no specific choreography and in that time we demo a move.  While I might not tell a participant in particular a way to tweak the move I will look out into my class and see something that could use tweaking so I might say or even do something that I hope will lead to a change.  Say, we are doing a move using our toe and I look out and see someone using their heel, I might suggest using the toe like squashing a bug or testing the water (depends on what we are doing).  So in essence I hope to teach the students that we are using our toe.  I teach the move as we are doing it as opposed to the aforementioned way.

IN addition, I like to share things about Nia while we are dancing.  Sometimes I talk about how Nia incorporates the BMES (Body, Mind, Emotion, and Spirit)  I might explain Nia’s Five Sensations while we are moving on the floor.  Allowing the Nia students to be reminded of them and possibly use them in the floorplay.  I often remind the Nia class about Natural Time letting them know they are free to move through the movement/choreography in their body’s own natural way and timing.  Sometimes this is actually part of the song and if not people are always encouraged to move in this way.

So, I take it back if I said — as I believe I did — I don’t like to say I teach Nia, because I do teach Nia.  But I don’t teach it as if it were a dance, because it is not just a dance.  While we do dance, Nia is so much more.  Maybe I should say I lead people through Nia Routines and I teach Nia?

Have you ever taken a dance class like I describe – the demo-do-type?  Do you see the difference between two?

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, Zumba, PiYo, Gentle Yoga

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

Form & Freedom, Yin & Yang

Posted by terrepruitt on January 17, 2013

I participated in a Nia Blue Belt Intensive in the beginning of November 2012.  Nia trainings are accurately named as intensive because they are intense.  They are intense because it is 50 plus hours of moving and thinking and learning and listening and exploring, etc.  It is a lot.  Nia is a great cardio dance workout, but if you want, it is a lot more.  The way things are connected is pretty amazing.  I am writing posts somewhat off the top of my head as to what my initial thoughts are in regards to the 13 Nia Blue Belt Principles.  After I get through all 13, I want to go back and write more as I read about each one and live with each one.  I also want to review the 13 Nia White Belt Principles.  At this time, I am on Nia Blue Belt Principle #9.  The principle is Form & Freedom.  The tagline is The Yin and Yang of Nia.  As I have stated in my other posts about the principles there is a lot more to them than I am writing about.  Nia is deep.  This is just off the top.

There are forms in Nia.  Some of the forms are:

-The 52 Nia Moves
-The Nia Routines
-The Seven Cycles of a Nia Workout
-All the PrinciplesDance 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, Zumba
-All the Triads
-The music
-The movement forms
-The Nia 5 Sensations

Some of the freedoms are:

-The energy variety
-Personal creativity
-Silence
FreeDance
Natural Time
-Adapting the Choreography
-Movement variety
-Mixing routines
-Transubstantiation

We have a lot of things that give us form.  We have a lot of things in which we have freedom.  There is yin and yang.  The form and the freedom can be separate . . . we could just dance a song entirely FreeDance with no form at all.  Just everyone dance their own way, no choreographed steps, no guidance, no form.  Or we can marry the two.  I love that.  I love sharing with my Nia class that we are free in our form to do what we want.  We can think about what we are doing and the moves we are doing or just let the music dictate to us.

Right now the routine I am doing is full of places to have the form and the freedom.  There are many places in the routine where our feet have a specific form.  The moves, according to Carlos AyaRosas (FKA Carlos Rosas), are precise.  Our feet have a specific place, but our arms are free to move.  While our arms are moving when the concentration is on the feet you can sense the form, the structure, the precision.  But when the concentration is on the arms . . . .even if you are just letting them dance on their own to the music . . . you sense the freedom.  You can sense your spirit.  When you’ve had enough practice you can do both, have the form and the freedom.

The form is what many of us are accustomed to having, it is what we were trained to have in an exercise class. The freedom is what helps Nia be unique.  With the Nia Blue Belt Principle #9 – Form & Freedom -The Yin and Yang of Nia we get to play and it makes the possibilities endless.

Have you ever played with form and freedom?  Why don’t you try it?  Put on some music you like to dance to and get your feet moving in a specific pattern.  After a few rounds of the pattern just allow your arms to go.  Let them move freely.  Can you see how that can add up to an amazing workout?

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Ready to Receive – Natural Time

Posted by terrepruitt on October 22, 2011

Nia class, Nia Teacher, Nia San Jose, San Jose Nia, cardio workout, cardio dance class, fun exerciseI have learned a lot in my 43 years.  I know there is a lot more I could learn, but one thing I have learned AND that I find fascinating is that I need to be ready to receive.  Have you ever shared something with someone and they “pishawed” you?  You had tried to tell them something you found fascinating/interesting/money-saving/yummy/good to do and they had acted as if you didn’t know what you were talking about.  Then two weeks later they come to you to tell you the very thing you tried to share with them?  I used to get offended, even upset, but I am starting to see it differently.  I am starting to see that when I tell people things and I feel as if I have been “pishawed” it is not as I once perceived it . . . it is not their mind is snapping closed . . . but, maybe, just maybe it is the mind just saying, “What? I have never heard of that . . . let me deal with that later . . .” And then when it is heard again the mind has a space for it because they had heard it before, so their mind is more open to accepting and listening.

It is somewhat like Natural Time in a Nia workout.  In Nia, in our workouts, we have natural time allowing individuals to move their bodies in their own time.  Could be they are not ready to do the move the first time they see it, but after a few repetitions they are ready to receive.  Their bodies are ready.  — Funny.  I didn’t start this post off as relating to Nia, but as I was sitting here typing it dawned on me that being ready to receive is Natural Time.  And as you know, all of the Nia White Belt Principles can be applied to everyday life.  Just as many principles from any practice; Yoga, Jujitsu, aikido, Ballet, etc. can be applied to life.

Sometimes we have so much on our minds that adding something new just isn’t gonna work.  So maybe when we first hear something we just say, “NO!”  Then our brains move on.  But maybe the new “thing” left a spot, like rust . . . . but good, where it just stays and either it actually starts seeping into our brain or it just sits there until we hear it again.  Then we are able to open to the idea.  It is like the old idea of a seed.  Sometimes it is not ready to be planted, but it is there in its own little space.

I can actually remember specific times when this has happened, especially with my hubby, but I am posting about it because I recognized awhile ago that I do this.  Because I have heard something and pishawed it then later examined it.  It fascinates me.  It makes me wonder why I didn’t recognize good advice/information when I first heard it.  I wonder why I am not smart enough to recognize beneficial information when I see it.  So that is why I think that we have to be ready to receive.  It really doesn’t have to do with being intelligent.  Sometimes being ready is something of natural time.  We have to be ready in our own time.  In our own time is the best time in which to learn.  Amazes me.

Have you ever learned or heard something and when you really thought about it realized that you had heard the same thing before but it didn’t sink in?  Have you ever experienced the second time around as being the time you benefited from something?

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Nia is teaching Me

Posted by terrepruitt on July 12, 2011

Nia is a cardio dance workout. We turn on music and we dance. We have Nia routines that we do to certain music or we can put the patterns to different music.  We are not limited to these two choices this is just an example.  We dance to music, we have fun, we don’t even realize we are exercising.  To me, it is “like” Zumba in that way.  But Nia is a practice. Nia has different levels and each level has principles.  If you choose to experience the different levels you can, but even if not the principles of Nia can be applied to the workout and to life. To me, Nia is like Yoga because of the fact that some of the “stuff” you do in a workout can be applied to life. Since the ideas and principles of Nia can be applied to life they are not necessarily “new”, most of it is not made up by the creators of Nia. Some of it you might recognize and have heard elsewhere. It is the way it is applied and put together. I have stated this before . . . that things are not new, so you aren’t imaging that.  I do like to repeat it because a lot of people have not heard of Nia so they might think it is something new and “way out there”, but it is not, it is based on science and things you know.  Some of the things I am learning are things that I have to continue to “practice”.  🙂

Here are a few of the things, in no particular order:

–It is ok not to be perfect. That is not really the way we state it when we talk about it, but I have started many posts with what we really say and maybe one day I will post one, but I am not ready to deal with the spam and odd comments I might receive from our actually verbiage of this same idea.  But basically we don’t have to do things perfectly. Which is really great because there really is no such thing.

The Four Engery Allies are always something I am having to practice. (Speak with impeccability / Don’t assume anything / Don’t take anything personally / Always do your best)

–Even silence is music. We actually practice listening for the silences in our music. A lot can happen in a silence, it could be a birthing place for something spectacular. Or it could just be a place of rest and calm. Either way it is sometimes something to look forward to.

–Natural Time is a gift. Moving and living in ones own natural time and not having to do everything by the clock that society runs on, is not always possible. There are some things you just have to do, so when there is an opportunity to move and live in natural time I take advantage of it and I consider it a treasured gift.

–Live in the moment. I am always doing one thing and thinking another. We live in a society of multi-tasking. It is celebrated and even rewarded, but it is not joyful nor rewarding. Sometimes I forget why I walked into a room because I started walking there to do something and then after the first two steps my brain has already jumped to the next task. So I arrive in the room thinking, “What am I doing here? I know what I want to do when I am done with why I came in here, but I don’t know why I am here.” So this is something I am always having to practice.

All of these things are things we learn in our Nia workout.  We don’t have to dance perfect, we have our energy allies when we dance, silence can be part of our movement, we move in our own natural time, and we move in the moment and dance to the music.  All of these things work in and off the dance floor.  So Nia teaches me a lot and it continues to teach me.

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Nia Routines

Posted by terrepruitt on February 4, 2010

I always get questions about the Nia Routines.  Are teachers given the routines?  Do teachers make up their own routines?  How many routines are there?  And more.  In this post I’ll just cover those three questions.

At the time of this writing there are 18 Nia routines showing on the teacher website for purchase.  I know in the 26 years that Nia has been around there have been a lot more.  I believe back when Nia started having routines, music rights and all that big business part of music was not an issue.  Now, I think, that portion of life has affected Nia and the routines.  I think they had to remove some from sale.

A routine is group of songs.  I think 8 to 10 is the average, but it depends on the length of the songs.  An average Nia workout class is about 55 minutes, give or take a few minutes.  At the time of this post Carlos and Debbie were the creators of the routines.

As a teacher, we purchase a routine which includes a DVD disc, a music CD, and an information pamphlet.  It is an amazing piece of educational material.  This post is not about the fabulous package of material we receive or about learning the routine, it is just general information about Nia routines.  But whenever I talk about the Nia routine packages I feel compelled to exclaim how wonderful they are. I will save the explanation of them for another post.

Teachers are encouraged to use their own creativity when leading a routine.  Nia routines are very well thought out and put together.  It is my understanding that with higher belt levels choreography is discussed, but with White Belts, Nia encourages them to use the routines that Nia has created.  But at the same time we are encouraged to do the katas to different music than we are given.

With the encouragement of using our own creativity, I believe comes the impression that we can do things in Natural Time and to me, that means we can adjust routines.  A kata might be less aerobic, but if we want to help make it more so we can add cha-cha-chas in place of a regular step, or just do fast side steps instead of a grapevine.

In addition to changing simple steps we are empowered with all of the different Movement Forms.  When we employ the energies of the different movement forms they can change the routine dramatically.

I do mix up the katas from various routines to “create” new routines.  To me this gives the participants a feeling of doing something new, yet at the same time they are moving to familiar patterns.  Or once, I had an out of town friend attending my classes, after the first class, she admitted she couldn’t do turns.  Well, if she were going to be my student for any length of time, you know I would put those in and work with her on them, but since she was only going to be in one more class, I put together katas that didn’t have turns so she would enjoy her workout more.

When I do mix it up, I make certain I adhere to the seven cycles of Nia.  I also try to make it a well-rounded routine.  I love it when I put something together and afterwards the class says, “Ahhh, I really liked that routine, what was it?”

I hope this helped to answer some of the questions about Nia routines.  Please let me know if you have other question.

I am going to continue to you invite you, my reader to a Nia class.  If you are ever visiting the San Jose/South Bay Area or you are local to me, please, come to one of mine :-).  If you are not local, look up a class near you and try Nia in your area.

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Nia Natural Time

Posted by terrepruitt on December 29, 2009

The Nia White Belt Principle #2 is Natural Time and the Movement Forms. I have posted about the movement forms, here I talk about Natural Time. There is the Natural Time of the Mayans with the 13 moons to a year and there is the Natural Time of one’s body and one’s own movements.

In a Nia workout class even as the teacher is leading the participants through a routine, the participants are encouraged to follow their own natural time. There could be a section of the exercise that consists of floating down and rising up. I might invite you to do it in “your own time”, your “natural time”, encouraging you to do it as you sense. The music could be motivating you to float down slowly and rise up quickly, or vice-versa, or slow both in the downward motion and the upward motion. But it is up to you and your body, your own natural time. So even though we are moving all together we are doing it in our own time. We are allowing our bodies to listen the music and move as we sense it.

The same goes, really for our choreographed moves, one might move it fast and big, whereas the person standing right next to them might move it slow and small. It all depends on one’s own body. Moving in natural time helps us connect deeply with our own bodies. Without being forced to move at a specific speed or “volume” we can ensure that we get the exact workout out bodies need.

The routines in Nia are choreographed in a way that allows for people to play with the moves.  Participants can move their own way and in their own time.  Most steps are simple and allow for simplifying or spicing it up.

Nia also considers 13/20 to be the code of Natural Time.  There are 13 major joints and 20 digits of the body.  Body movements moving all 13 joints and 20 digits is a way to receive information from the body.

Visit my site for details on my ON-GOING classes in San Jose (the schedule and the classes I mention on the blog might change from time to time.  The best way to find out about CURRENT classes is to visit: http://www.helpyouwell.com/nia-class-schedule.html .  Thank you!)

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