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 ‘Practice’

Still Practicing Living In The Moment

Posted by terrepruitt on November 22, 2014

I sometimes think life is always trying to teach us lessons.  I admit that sometimes I am oblivious to the lessons.  But I also think that sometimes I can see them.  I also think that sometimes the lessons are a practice.  It is not as if I go through life, have something happen, see the thing I am supposed to learn and then – BAM!  I got it.  Lesson exposed, lesson learned, I’m good.  Nope.  Sometimes it is a practice.  Just like yoga and Nia or learning an instrument.  Continuous or multiple exposures helps you learn the art of it.  Last month I wrote about “The Art Of Letting Go“, where I went with a friend to an evening event called Paint Nite.  The idea is to paint something in two hours being led step-by-step by an artist.  My idea was to just let go.  To know that my painting was not going to look exactly like the original, but it would look like something.  It would bear a resemblance to the one I was taught to paint.  I liked it because it was blue.  Well, I have been doing things that remind me to concentrate and be in the moment.  Yes, I write about this often because it is something I need to be reminded of constantly.  I need to live in the moment.  I need to concentrate on what I am doing.  I need to enjoy what I am doing.  I need to fully sense and experience what I am doing.

I think my first post about this was me talking about brushing my teeth.  I stated that I brushed my teeth while doing a lot of different things — all the time.  I am better now.  I used to think that if I brush my teeth while doing something else I could save time, but what ended up happening was that I was concentrating on the other task so much so that I didn’t know if I brushed the upper left side so I would do it again.  Then wonder if I brushed the bottom right . . . the point is, I think I ended up brushing a lot longer because I was not concentrating on just brushing my teeth, than if I would have JUST brushed my teeth.  I am better at that now.  I start to step away from the sink and I remember that I will be done faster if I just get it done than if I go . . . do whatever.

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, Group Ex City of San Jose, San Jose Group Ex classes, YMCAI did another Paint Nite and I really had to concentrate on what I was doing in order to keep up with the artist.  It is my opinion that she was going really fast.  I couldn’t keep up, so listening and talking and participating in what was going on around me put me WAY behind the instruction.  I just had to buckle down and concentrate on what I was doing so that I could listen to what she was saying so that I could do the next step she explained.  I was concentrating so hard on what she was saying that I took a swig of paint water.  YUP!  I was listening to her, I reached behind my canvas, grabbed the cup and brought it to my lips and took a sip.  I realized it tasted odd and spit it out – mostly in my cup, partially on my friend.  (Thank God, she is so understanding and forgiving.)  That was me not paying attention to the cup I was grabbing.

But I like this creation better than my last.  I learned so much from my first time, that I was able to do this one better, but I actually had the opposite problem.  I wasn’t using enough paint.  But I think — still not, sure it was the water I need more of.  Regardless, I learned some more and I really like this painting.  No, it is lacking the soft lines of the original, but I like it.

One of the other things I am doing that requires one to clear one’s thoughts is archery.  I wanted to see what shooting a bow was like.  I wanted to use a “regular” bow, but that is not the popular bow to shoot.  We were shooting one of those fancy things with what remind me of pulleys on each end.  We weren’t even using what they call a “recurve”.  Whatever bow you use the target is the target so learning how to get the arrow where you want it to go was the interesting part.  Not that my arrow always went where I wanted to go, but I was taught the premise.  But the instructor (Mike at Predator’s Archery) really emphasized concentration.  He shared his (award winning) techniques regarding targeting and shooting the arrow, but he emphasized again and again how you have to concentrate.  And you might be surprised on what you concentrate on, but that is not the point of this post, the point is you have to not think about distracting things.  Live in the now and focus on the task at hand.

Focusing and concentrating really goes a long way in getting things done.  We are always multitasking because that is just how life is.  In most situations you cannot not think about more than one thing, but sometimes just DOING one thing really helps you get it done quick and with focus so that you can move on to the next thing.  Things like to have your undivided attention.  I will continue to practice focus, concentration, and living in the now even though the world around me as a whole thinks I need to do fifty things at once in order to be productive.

What do you thing?  Do you think that less can be more?  Do you think sometimes if you just do ONE thing (instead of multitasking) you can get it done faster and better?

 

Posted in Misc, Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 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 »

Goodie Jar – Check In #35

Posted by terrepruitt on October 25, 2013

Ha, ha, ha.  Seems like “The Fox” will not go away.  Two weeks ago I posted a video of a “live” version Ylvis did on Late Night.  Today I received word that some of my fellow Nia teachers are going to use the song in their Halloween Nia Routine.  They even printed out the words so that people can sing along.  I love it.  So funny.  I posted the words here:  I Give Up, What Does The Fox Say?

I am still filling my Goodie Jar with good things.  Remember this is a practice to help us recognize things that we might not stop to notice normally.  Also it is something to help us remember the good things even when there are things that are not good happening.  So . . . . really . . . . anyone can do it.  It is not too late to start, if you have not already.  There are two full months left of the year!

So . . . . how is your jar coming along?

Posted in Good Things in the Goodie Jar | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Celebrity Visits

Posted by terrepruitt on March 23, 2013

Whether you do Nia, Zumba, yoga, Pilates, country western dance, motor-cycle race, play tennis, or just about anything there are the “Gods” or celebrities of the practice/dance/sport.  Often the “Gods” or gurus are the masters or the top teachers, but sometimes it is the CREATOR himself/herself.  That is when the event is really rockin’.  That is when the events sell out or get so crowded it is crazy.  Well, Nia is going through a lot of changes and they have been working for a couple of years training the top instructors to move up even further to become top trainers.  The male of the male-female combo that created Nia, Carlos AyaRosas (FKA Carlos Rosas) retired a bit ago, so that left the female creator to continue on.  She is coming to the San Francisco Bay Area . . . . . which is a rather large area.  She is going to be in the North Bay, the East Bay, and the Peninsula.  And it is going to be rockin’.  She and a top trainer are going to be here.

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

April 2013

Debbie Rosas is the (co-)creator of Nia.  Kevin VerEecke is a Nia Trainer.  They are going to be in the San Francisco Bay Area in the beginning of April (2013).  They are going to have seven classes.  It is going to be incredible.  Every thing has its superstars, its celebrities and these are ours.  It is really exciting.

I took my Nia White Belt Intensive at the Nia Headquarters in Portland.  The trainers doing the intensive were Debbie and Carlos.  Plus they were here for a “Spirit of Nia” tour within the last four years.  So I have met them both.  I have never met Kevin.

I am excited that Debbie and Kevin will be here sharing the Nia experience.  The classes that they are going to be doing are 52 Moves classes.  While we have a basic set of 52 Moves we don’t typically do all 52 in every Nia Routine.  We do many, but not usually all.  In these classes they are going to lead us through all 52 Moves.  There are going to be seven chances to check it out.

The first class that will be held will be with Keven VerEecke only in San Rafael.  Then Friday’s classes, Saturday’s Classes, and Sunday’s Classes will be both Debbie and Kevin.

The flyer indicates that all classes will have a different playlist.  I guess for some people that is important.  I know Nia enough to know that all seven classes could be the same EXACT playlist yet all seven classes could be totally different.  That is the beauty of Nia.  And with two masters leading the dance it wouldn’t matter.  BUT . . . the flyer does indicate all classes will have different play lists.

I hope you will take this opportunity.  Nia is always fun, but when you have the creator up in front of a room full of people who are there to dance, move, and have fun there is no way you can experience anything but MAGIC.

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

Thanksgiving 2012

Posted by terrepruitt on November 22, 2012

I have so much to be thankful for I work on giving thanks all year long.  I tell the people who I am thankful for that I appreciate them.  I do feel so much gratitude that I don’t feel bad taking one of my posts for sharing some things and people who I am thankful for.  Why not, right?  It is my blog and Thursday happens to be one of the days I post.  And since Thanksgiving is set up to occur on Thursdays it just happens that I will be posting on that day.

I did have a conversation recently with my Nia students and we agreed that it would be nice if the United States celebrated Thanksgiving in October as our Canadian neighbors do.  We were talking about how it would be beneficial to have the Holidays spread out a bit.  Having more time in between Thanksgiving and Christmas could ease some stress.  It wouldn’t be one big rush.  Plus the fact that not all of the days off from work would be so close together.  Sounds like a good idea.

As I type this (a bit before Thanksgiving) what is really in the front of my mind to be thankful for is my Nia Students.  I am very grateful to them for holding space for me while I took the Nia Blue Belt Training, the next level of Nia.  As a dance exercise teacher there is a fear that students won’t come back if a class is cancelled.  It takes commitment to come to a class day after day and week after week and sometimes once that habit is broken it is easy to let it go.  So knowing that my students are committed to Nia and to supporting me really helped me let go of the fact that I had to cancel my classes and it allowed me to really BE where I needed to be.

I am also very thankful for the people involved with my Nia Blue Belt.  I am thankful for the organizer.  She kindly kept in communication with me when I didn’t know if I should sign up for the intensive because my mom had been having health issues and at one point she was going to be scheduled for a major (MAJOR, MAJOR) surgery the very week of the intensive.  She let me know that I could register as close as 30 days prior.  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, ZumbaI have huge gratitude towards the Nia Trainers who each have their own story, one flying from Hurricane Sandy to come teach us, and the other having had a bee sting, a car accident, and surgery.  And the class, my fellow Blue Belts.  Some of the trainees are actually other belts retaking the blue, but they will be fellow blues to me.  I appreciate the warm and welcoming space that was created and held.  There were many people going through personal situations and they were able to step into the space strong and ready to learn.  They put the issues aside and focused and made it through.  Thank you so much, Blues!

My husband was so great during the entire week of training.  I am a firm believer that the body and brain needs nutrients throughout the day so I make sure that I make him lunch every night.  He is one of those worker-people that will just power through his day not giving a thought to food.  So it is really important that he have lunch right there to eat.  During the intense week he made sure to make his own lunch (AND DINNER) because he knew that if he didn’t I would.  He helped it feel as if I were on vacation from my home duties.  This helped tremendously.

I am very thankful for my mom’s health.  She has been going through some issues this past year and true to my mom she has stumped her doctors.  At first they didn’t know what exactly was going on, then every time they had a treatment plan it would change because my mom does not follow text books or protocols.  She had a stricture in her throat which led to the discovery of lung cancer.  And over the past year has had surgery three times none of which were the one that was planned to fix her throat.  That surgery was to be a major surgery.  And by some miracle (the doctors are amazed) that surgery is no longer needed and her cancer was removed along with a lobe of her lung.  She is almost back to normal.  She just needs to work on getting used to have less lung.  I am very thankful for her health.  It was a very long, stressful year.

My friends are always on the top of the list of blessings I am thankful for.  I am always amazed at the wonderful people who I have that love and support me.  And I am eternally grateful.  I am grateful for my family.  I am grateful for Nia.  It is an amazing practice and through it I have met even more amazing people.

I hope that those of you that celebrate Thanksgiving have a very Happy One.  And I invite everyone to take a moment to think of something they are thankful for.  Anything you care to share that you are thankful for?

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

A Rose Is A Rose

Posted by terrepruitt on April 1, 2010

I have learned a lot from our backyard here in San Jose. One thing I have learned is even rose bushes change.

I am posting pictures of our roses because they have changed over the years. When we first moved in there were ORANGE. I had never seen roses so orange. My husband wanted to rip out all the rose bushes and rearrange the yard and I requested that he keep the orange rose bush. I didn’t care about anything else in the yard but that one bush. I was fascinated by the orange roses. And so were many people that saw them. When we first moved in we had a ton of roses, all the time, or it seemed like all the time. We would have flowers in the house all the time. I would also take them to work. People would stop and ask me about the orange roses. That is how vibrant their color was.

While I am not sure about how my hubby felt about the orange roses, I know how he felt about the rose bush. He HATED it. It was one of those bushes that had thorns everywhere. At the top of the stem near the flower there would be hundreds of little tiny thorns. When they got in your fingers, they felt like fiber glass. The thorns were progressively larger as they went down the stem. There was never any room on the stem to put your fingers. So working with these roses always resulted in bloody fingers. The thorns at the bottom where huge, sometimes as big as a half of an inch.

Also the blooms had “less petals”. I think of the “less petal” roses as “real” roses.

Early this week, while I was practicing Nia, I looked out the window and saw a huge rose on the bush. I decided I wanted to have it inside. So I went out to cut it. Even though the rose was next to a bud, I decided to cut them both so the stem would be long enough to put in a tall vase. I also cut another rose. I was holding them while I was looking for a vase to put them in, it occurred to me that there was one (ONE!!!) thorn on the big rose’s stem. And the other one hardly had any. Then I looked at the rose itself and noticed it too is different.  I had previously posted about the color change of our roses, but I had not noticed the lack of thorns nor the increase in the amount of petals before.

They are still very beautiful and I love having roses in the yard and in the house. But, there are not the same roses that we had when we moved in. So I learned that roses morph. The rose bush that has been in our yard since we moved in eleven years ago has changed. Interesting. I guess most things change huh? I had noticed that the flowers were not longer the striking orange color they had used to be, but I just noticed the flower itself is different and there are less thorns. They have been changing over the years. Do you know why? Is it cross pollination? Do all roses do that?

Posted in Flowers | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Mind Body or Body Mind

Posted by terrepruitt on August 1, 2009

A lot of practices claim to be mind-body practices. I believe the idea is to engage our mind to control our body.

Well, I like to call Nia body-mind. For me calling it body-mind reminds me that we are first going to the body. We are engaging our bodies in movement and allowing them to move freely. Then we can allow our minds to loosely focus on what we are doing. So we don’t want our minds controlling our movement, but we want our minds registering the sensation so as to give it full power and allow us to acknowledge what feels right.

Let me give you an example of what can happen:

The music starts, and like a lot of people, we begin to move without even thinking, we start to sway or wiggle, or whatever the body senses the music is telling it to do. But then—CLICK!   The mind engages and then we start to THINK about how to move, then we start judging  movement, then we start choreographing movements, then we realize that we are thinking, thinking, thinking. UGH! I would be the latter as mind-body, my brain is thinking and I am doing what it tells me.

In Nia, one of the greatest tools to learn is to be body-mind and just let the body go. The body can listen to the music on its own. Then when you are able to do that, it is amazing how the body knows what it needs. It can move you in a way that your mind might keep you from. Your hips can thrust or gyrate, your shoulders can shimmy, your feet and skip and jump, and your voice can be heard—all without judgment from yourself.

Also, if we let our bodies lead us, it will keep us from doing something that is too much or not in the best interest of our bodies. Our bodies seek balance and health. When we are working out, if we are allowing our bodies to be the guide we can get the exact kind of workout we need. As our bodies guide us to what we need we can concentrate with our mind to understand the sensation that we are sensing with our bodies. When our bodies get the workout it needs both our body and our mind feel great.

I think if you have not tried Nia it will be difficult for you to “get” what I am saying. I would like to invite you to go to the Nia website and see if there is a class near you or look at my class schedule and see if one of my classes (I teach four per week) works for you.  There are Nia classes in San Jose, Los Gatos, Mountian View, San Ramon, Oakland, Pleasanton, Palo Alto, Los Altos, all over, one of them has to work for you.  Go out and try it!

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