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

    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!

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  • My Bloggey Past

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Posts Tagged ‘Nia Willow Glen’

How We Used Healing Sounds In Our Nia Class

Posted by terrepruitt on April 24, 2012

A post ago I posted about Healing Sounds. In Nia classes participants are encouraged to make noise or what we call sound.  One reason to sound is to let the teacher of the class know you are breathing.  This holds true for many exercise classes.  Wanting students/participants to be breathing holds true for all teachers.  There are a lot of reasons to sound, it does not have to be for healing or feeling better.  But as I stated in that post, I just happened to come across that information and those sounds so I thought it would be fun to bring the list to class and use them as a focus.

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, The first time we used the Healing Sounds in a Nia Class, I had written each sound down on a separate piece of paper and I taped them to the mirror.  Before class I verbally reviewed each sound.  Our focus was the Healing Sounds with an intent of bringing some healing.  I invited the participants to make these noises during class.  The general invitation was to make them any way; they could breath in and make the noise on one long exhale, they could make them quick and staccato, they could make the tone high or low.  Whatever they wanted. Whatever they felt.  As with most focuses I do bring them into play specifically at times so when we were punching or kicking I might have encouraged them to make loud and forceful sounds.  I encouraged them at one point to try each sound.  I also had them play with saying a sound at least six times as was mentioned in the information I had found.  For my own practice I know that I used the sounds in a pattern and as with many things when one person does it others follow.  So we did a lot of lead and follow with sound as each person thought of different ways to use the sounds. It was very fun.

After the class I read to them what the sounds were related to and what they assisted with.  It was very fascinating.  Some commented that they had been drawn to a particular sound and they could see how that would be an area in which assistance would be appreciated.  Some had fun doing a good job of using all the sounds.  Some admitted that some sounds were more fun to make than others.

The most recent time that I used the healing sounds I again taped up the papers with each sound written on it.  But this time I read the information before class.  So the participants were aware of what each sound was prior to dancing.  The focus and intent were the same, but with the knowledge of what each sound assisted with some Nia students decided to focus on the specific sounds they felt would help them.  Again we had the freedom of how to make the sound and when to make it.  It is so exhilarating to hear my students weave sounding into the dance and to hear them make the sounds in their own way.

This second time around it was rewarding to hear my students say, “Yay!  I was just thinking about the healing sounds and hoping you would do them again soon.”  So they enjoyed it the first time and were looking forward to it.

I think I just decided today that with each routine I teach, with each round, I am going to do at least one class at each location (Willow Glen San Jose, Campbell, and Blossom Hill San Jose) where the focus is the healing sounds.  Whether the belief is that they actually heal or not we all have a lot of fun with it.  And they are sounds that my class actually make!

You don’t have to be in a Nia class to experiment with the sounds.  Have you used them?

Posted in Helpful Hints, Nia, Sounding | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Events, Thoughts, Happenings, Christmas, Things

Posted by terrepruitt on December 10, 2011

The studio I teach Nia at in the Willow Glen Area of San Jose is having their annual Holiday Party.  I have been teaching at the studio for almost three years (three years in January 2012).  This is the first time I have been able to make it to the party.  I am very excited.  They have food, performances, demos, make-up, drumming, dancing, and just plain fun.  If you are local and you are able join us.  (02.16.12 The even has taken place, see my next post https://terrepruitt.com/2011/12/13/halanda-studio-holiday-party-2011/  for a little summary and pictures.)

I think that people are not comfortable turning their head.  While out today I was watching people back out of parking spaces in parking lots and I was amazed.  Most of the people I watched did not look back while backing up?  What is up with that?  You are actually supposed to TURN YOUR HEAD AND LOOK BACK while backing up.  I saw so many people glance left then right then front and just start going and KEEP going.  I understand sometimes you look left, then right, then front as you start easing out, but then you turn and keep looking back.  Nope, not the people I saw.  They just zipped out as if people coming around the big huge car parked besides them could see they were backing out and would stop.  Crazy.  I am surprised I didn’t see a lot of collisions.

Last night we went out to dinner with a group of friends.  It is our second annual Christmas dinner.  Last year it was at a friend’s house.  This year we went to a restaurant.  We ordered a few of everything from each section of the menu and we shared it family style.  It was all very good.  Some of it was very unusual.  It is one of those restaurants where the menu changes all the time so you can’t go there expecting to get something you got last time.  One of the stand out items for me was Pumpkin Ravioli, Sage-Walnut Pesto, and Pomegranate.  The Pomegranate just pushed it over the edge of yummy.  The Lasagna of Pork Sausage, Zucchini and Mozzarella was excellent too.  One of the weirdest things was Pumpkin Ice Cream, Hazelnuts, Aged Balsamico.  I cannot say that I would recommend this.  The Balsamico was not sweet enough to tie the flavors together.  In fact when it hit the portion of my tongue that registers sour my face did the lemon taste face and my eyes started pouring water.  A bit TOO much of a contrast to me.  I am not usually a fan of the family style eating but since there were so many things to taste I really enjoyed it last night.

We got a bum tree this year.  I picked it.  I thought I did GREAT.  My husband was shocked when he came home and I told him to be careful.  We can’t understand why it is perfectly green and looks great, but it acting as if it is dead and brown.  Needles are falling off it at an incredible rate.  I am bummed.  It will be a very short Christmas tree time this year.  The cat will be happy.  She is really good with a tree in the house for about 30 days.  She will tolerate it.  Maybe bat at an ornament once or twice.  But on the 31st day.  She had been known to give an ornament a whack.  To me that is her telling me that she is done.  When we have a tree we move her cat tower away from the best window to another window.  The other window is not as tall so she can’t see as well on the top.  Plus it is just not in the “right” spot.  There is a TREE in the right spot.  This displacement doesn’t really make her happy.  At first she is a little excited to be in a new spot but that wears off quickly.  Also the tree is in the best sun spot.  And with this tree I am not even opening the curtains to let the sun and heat on it.  For as long as we have had her, she will let the tree be until we are over 30 days.  Then she tells me in a very catly way that she is done.  So this year she will be happy because it will not last 30 days.  Sad but true.

I am still working on my 31 Things Project.  How about you?

So, do you have anything to share?  An event?  Perhaps some thoughts?  Anything happening with you?  What about Christmas; have you decorated?  Are you done shopping?  Anything?

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

Salsa, Tango, and Nia

Posted by terrepruitt on January 4, 2011

When I first started teaching my Nia classes I was doing it three times a week, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at the studio in Willow Glen. Not every class had many students. I remember talking to different people about the low numbers. Some of them suggested not having that many classes in a week, not having that many dance lessons a week. Understandable. Most people didn’t know what Nia was. Since it is dance many people thought of it as a dance that you learn. But Nia is not like Salsa or Tango where you are shown steps, then asked to mimic them, then instructed to practice, then allowed to practice to music. Nia is not a dance lesson type of dance.

Even though Nia incorporates nine different movement forms, Nia is more comparable to Zumba or Jazzercise where the music is playing and the participants follow the lead of the teacher. No experience in or with any of the movement forms is required. Nia is a cardio dance workout, it is exercise so it is GREAT to do it three times a week. It is recommended to participate in a form of cardio exercise at least three times a week to maintain heart health. Depending upon your individual needs and goals cardio more often might even be in order. So Nia three times a week is great.

When I had the opportunity to hold a third class in a week that is exactly what many of my Monday and Wednesday students said, “Nia three times a week is great!”  Now I have a third Nia class on Fridays in Los Gatos.  (I know I have said that before, but I am excited.  Plus I need to get the word out!)

Another point about Salsa and Tango is a partner is needed. Nia does not require a partner so it is often easier to actually do it three times a week since you are not trying to coordinate with another person to meet and dance three times a week.

Participating in Nia with any regularity participants will learn, but it might not be dance steps. There are many things to learn when participating in Nia, but it is not taught as steps and or patterns are taught in a dance lesson.  Instead of Nia being a dance lesson, you will learn lessons as you dance Nia.  🙂

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

Stuffed – State Of The Turkey

Posted by terrepruitt on November 23, 2010

For many of us, Thanksgiving is almost here, at least in the United States.  For many, Thanksgiving is about food.  Turkey dinner.  I am not saying that giving thanks is not done, I am just saying that sometimes dinner is a very high priority.  With the holidays is seems as if there people give themselves permission to over eat.  Sometimes it is not even conscious.  Eating is such a social thing sometimes we could be doing it and not even really be aware.  So in order to help ensure that it is really only the turkey that is stuffed this season remember all of the party eating ideas that you have heard.

Drink a lot of water.
This will help keep you full and hydrated.  Plus if you always have a full glass people will not ask you if you want a cocktail which typically is a high calorie drink.

–Position yourself away from the appetizers. 
This can minimize the talking, grazing, listening, grazing, laughing situation that sometimes results in standing right next to a table full of finger foods.

–If you are hungry BEFORE the event, eat.
Eat something really filling and healthy.  The idea is that you will be full when you get to your destination and be less likely to graze at the appetizer table or fill up on unhealthy choices.

–Give yourself extra incentive to stay away from the holiday cocktails, by being the designated driver.
Then you can easily say, “No, thanks, I’m driving.”  And not have to fight off that well-meaning bartender that loves to make certain everyone is having a great time (with a drink)!

–Fill your plate with salad and greens.
Then barely use the salad dressing.  This will help keep you plate too full for a lot of the higher calorie items and help keep you full.

–Don’t fill you plate with vegetables that are in a casserole, cream, or covered in sauce.
The other ingredients in the casserole, the cream, and/or the sauce will make that veggie more calories.

–Take a bit of everything you want from the beginning. 

Don’t fall into the “oh my plate is too full, I’ll go back for it”.  Just take enough of everything to allow you a taste without planning on going back.  Often times we are full but since we said we were going to go back and get something because we didn’t try everything, we do.  We go back for that one thing and often times end up getting additional things because they were good.  So we end up with even MORE than we had planned.

–Scope out the food before you start filling your plate.
You know what I am talking about.  You’ve done it, you’ve heard other people say it, “Oh, I wouldn’t have gotten so much of the xxx, if I’d had known there was yyyy.”  So if you have a buffet style meal, walk the line.  See what there is make a plan.  If it is a sit down where things are passed, you can still see what is being served before you take a huge helping of one thing.

–Be mindful. 
Be aware of what you are eating AND drinking.  If you really want that pie a la mode, then maybe a small spoonful of mashed potatoes will do ya, instead of the heaping spoonful.  Also, being mindful has to do with your individual health goals.

Maybe you aren’t a calorie counter, but you do work to avoid the Transfat . . . so that means you might opt for the ice cream or plain pie instead of the low-calorie non-dairy whipped topping.  Just because it is the holidays and we are celebrating doesn’t mean we have to throw away our good eating habits.  Enjoy, but do it consciously.  Don’t end up stuffed like the turkey.

FYI:  I will be having my regularly scheduled Nia classes.  Wednesday at 9:30 am in Willow Glen (day before Thanksgiving) and Friday at 9:30 am in Los Gatos (day after Thanksgiving).  —Thanksgiving 2010

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Putting Students to Work

Posted by terrepruitt on October 5, 2010

I teach Nia in the San Francisco Bay Area. One thing I am trying to do is increase awareness of Nia and also, at the same time, increase my class sizes. So recently I hosted a Playshop in San Jose at the studio in Willow Glen where I hold my Nia classes. My topic for the Playshop was some of the 52 Moves of Nia. It was a success. I felt good about it, even though I put my students to work.

I had spent a day and a half or so preparing what moves I wanted to go over in the Playshop and what Nia katas from the various Nia routines I wanted to use in the Nia Class. I wanted the class routine to include all the various moves we explored in the Playshop. I spend a couple of days between doing other things reviewing to make certain I was comfortable with my presentation and to make certain I could get through it within the allotted time. So I was confident the Playshop and the Nia Class would go smooth. What I was nervous about was being able to get in and set up.

If you are a teacher of almost anything, you know that here is time needed to set up. Showing up early to set up and be ready to greet your students is not always possible with the time allowed in between workout classes. In exercise class situations sometimes there is NO time in between classes. They are scheduled to end on the hour and start at the same time. So I had scheduled 15 minutes in between, but there was still things that needed to be done and I wasn’t wanting to rush the class before us out.

So I came up with an idea . . . . now, I would bet I am not the only one to come up with this and I bet if I were to do minimum research I would find all the “Planning a workshop” information to tell me exactly this, but I am still going share it.

I realized that I could put my students to work! So I did. Most of the time people are more than willing to help. One of my students showed up really early—before me even. So I knew she was ready to do something. So I set her on one task. Then two of my students who I had been plotting to do this work all along were assigned tasks.

This assigning of tasks can also be connected to my post about “If You want something done right“. Because I had to be willing to “let go” and let my students do the tasks. And I have to say they did them beautifully. I was so proud. I was proud of myself for having thought of having them do it and I was proud of myself that I just let them do it. And I was especially proud that they did it so well. I believe they did better than I could have–it was awesome.

It was a great learning experience for me.

My hubby (thanks, Hubby!) also came to help. With him mopping the floor and some of my students setting up the room, I was able to concentrate on the participants coming in that needed to sign waivers and get settled. All of this allowed us to start on time . . . which allowed us to end on time — for the Playshop at least. The Nia routine I put together was a little longer than an hour so we went over on that. But all-in-all it was my students that allowed me to have a successful Playshop.

(Thanks Students!)

Posted in 52 Moves (of Nia), Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Nia’s Three Stages of Practice

Posted by terrepruitt on September 30, 2010

With Nia you get a workout.  It is not necessary to have any experience in any type of dance modality or martial arts, or any type of practice (Yoga, Pilates, etc.).  Any BODY can walk into a class and join in and following their own body’s way get a great workout.

In the Nia practice there are three stages.  So if you want you can take your workout into these areas.  The stages are:

1—Learn the Move
When you learn the move you are learning the name, you are thinking about the move.  The concentration is on placing your feet in the proper place, learning where your limbs are supposed to be.  Maybe trying some of the different intensity levels and the different planes.  This is the stage where you are actually doing a lot of thinking.

2—Move the Move
This is the stage we you move the move.  You are doing a routine and just moving.  Getting the moves into your muscle memory.  Your body is learning the move.  Here is where you are learning the combinations.  This stage is where you let your body lead and you don’t think too much.  The body has an intelligence of its own and if you let it sense it can flow.

3—Energize the Move
This is the stage that you can achieve once your body knows the move.  This stage could be during a song the first time you do it, if you feel comfortable and your body senses the moves you might be able to just put the energy into it from one of the Nine Movement Forms.  Or it could be the stage you get to once you have done the song a few times.  It really depends on the you.  It depends on how you feel and how you sense the music.  But this is where we really get to play with our routines, where we can energize with the energy of T’ai Chi, Tae Kwon Do, Jazz Dance, or Yoga.

This weekend (10/03/10), in Willow Glen/San Jose I am holding a Nia Playshop where we will Learn the Move.  We are going to play with some of the moves that make up the 52 Moves of Nia.  Then after we are going to have a Nia Class where we Move the Move.  Since we will have spent an hour Learning the Moves I am hoping that some of you will be able to Energize the moves.  See you Sunday!

Posted in Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Practice What I Preach About Being True To Myself

Posted by terrepruitt on May 21, 2009

Dance Exercise, Nia San Jose, Nia Campbell, San Jose Nia, Campbell Nia, San Jose Dance Workout, Campbell Dance WorkoutThis morning as I was trying to figure out what to write about, it dawned on me that I wasn’t practicing what I was preaching about being true to myself.

I was trying to decide what to write. I want to write stuff that people will read. I am worried about people not reading it. I am worried that they won’t like it. I am worried that I am not following my own self initiated schedule of healthful on Tuesdays and Saturdays with Thursdays less in that realm. Because of all my worries I couldn’t think of what to write, I felt as if my thoughts were twisted like the most twisty Yoga pose. Then it hit me, my real intent of all of this, my blog is somewhat like a mini resume.

When people ask me about their resume or they share that they are confused because they don’t know what to put on it because they hear this and they hear that, I ALWAYS tell them to follow their heart and write a resume they would like. Some of who they are needs to be in that resume because they want to be happy at their new job. The person that is going to hire them and the place where they will fit the best will be the person that likes the resume at the company that accepts it. So if you put a little of yourself in it, then it should all work out.

So with my social media stuff I need to think the same way. I am tweeting so people will see me, and learn from me and want to train and workout with me. When I retweet something, it is something I like, so that is showing a little bit of me. Twitter is different for everyone, we all have different reasons for being there, so if you don’t like the tweets you are seeing don’t follow. I follow to learn and network, so I won’t follow you if I see tweets I don’t like. That is Twitter.

For me Facebook is more personal. I am not “friending” everyone because I like to be less business-y there. Although I do post a lot of stuff about Nia, that is just because I am practicing it and I like the way it makes me feel so I want to share with others. And I am growing my garden of Nia flowers so I tend to repost their information so that others can see what people think about Nia and maybe come try it for themselves.

With my blog I have a few goals. I want to share about events that happen in my areas, Los Gatos, San Jose (Willow Glen, Berryessa) and around, I want to entertain a bit, and I want to help people learn, but I don’t need to be all scientific as I first thought. Every time I go to write a blog with a bunch of interesting facts, I find a bunch of other sites with a bunch of interesting facts. I think that people can go to those sites if they want the science and the statistics. I will keep it simple. And you will either like it or you won’t, but I think if you like it then you will enjoy my classes and enjoy training with me.

My point is that I need to stop worrying and just start doing so that we can get on with it. I need to be me so you can see who I am and then say, “Yeah, I would like to go to her class.” So, whew . . . what a relief, now I just have to remember to actually practice what I preach. You are welcome to remind me.

Posted in Just stuff | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »