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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Posts Tagged ‘yoga students’

I Asked For Help To Help

Posted by terrepruitt on August 16, 2017

I am shipping out the first batch of coupons this week! You may have seen my post I’m Clipping Coupons, Want To Join Me? about how the military personnel and their families can use expired coupons overseas. There is a program called Troupons which involves collecting and sending MANUFACTURERS COUPONS overseas so that people in the military and their families can use them to help stretch their dollars. I learned about it when I came across Cheryl Wright’s post Overseas Military Coupon Program. She has kindly offered to accept coupons then forward them on to the Troupons program. Because, if you don’t know, cutting out coupons takes a long time. First you have to make sure they are the correct coupons (MANUFACTURERS COUPONS) then you have to cut them out. Then separate them into the correct categories, then separate them into expiration date piles. Originally when I posted my post saying I was going to send her coupons, I didn’t have that many. I don’t get many coupons.  I don’t get the newspaper and that is where the bulk of MANUFACTURERS COUPONS come from. But I realized that there are a few Nia and yoga students that actually get a newspaper and they would have access to coupons. So I asked my students for help collecting coupons to help people in the military overseas.

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, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitMy students came through.  They are helping by cutting out coupons. They have brought me enough that I can sent a batch off to Cheryl. I have separated them into three categories: Non-food, food, and pets. I am going to leave the expiration date sorting to her because she will have a better idea of when the coupons will get to the program. At this time most of the coupons are NOT expired, but by the time they get overseas they will be, but hopefully they will be in the acceptable time frame.

I am so grateful for my students contributions. I really wouldn’t have had enough to send to feel like I was contributing, but with their help I think we are making a worthwhile contribution.

The non-food coupons make up the bulk of the coupons. I am sure that there are plenty of uses for many of them. There are coupons for hair dye, shavers, allergy medicine, probiotics (in many forms), heart burn medicine, and more.

I am just fascinated by this whole program. I love that coupons can help the military overseas. I think that is amazing. I appreciate the people that work to make this happen. So thank you to my students. Thanks for taking the time to cut out the coupons and bring them to class. Thanks to Cheryl for volunteering to get the coupons to the program. And thanks to the program organizers for doing it all.

I think that cutting out coupons and sending them in is an easy way to help out those that are making sacrifices for us.  If you are interested in learning more about the Troupons program click here. If you are interested in sending your coupons to Cheryl click here.

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

Yellow Friday Photo

Posted by terrepruitt on August 4, 2017

Sometimes there is just a pretty flower that catches your eye. I was talking with my students after yoga class one day and I noticed this in the landscaping at the community center. My students were laughing at me because they knew the names of all the flowers and plants and I had no idea. I thought this one was pretty.

To me, it is a flower for today’s Friday Photo. Do you know what it is?

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, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit

Posted in Friday Photo | Tagged: , , , , , | 9 Comments »

Guidance – Not A Personal Attack

Posted by terrepruitt on June 21, 2017

In the two Nia Intensives I have attended, one of the things we cover first is the Energy Allies or more commonly known as the Four Agreements. As I attend many classes and teach many classes I am reminded over and over again how important these ideals are.  In this post I am talking mainly in reference to #3 (Don’t take anything personally). What must happen is there needs to be an unspoken agreement that students and teachers have when they enter a class, the student agrees to not take things personally — a correction or attention given by the teacher is not personal, the student is there to learn and improve so guidance is given as needed and as time (in class and holding the pose) allows.  Perhaps  it would be a good idea to remind everyone at the beginning of a session of classes or a workshop.  A yoga instructor has to have confidence and faith that the students know they are not being picked on or singled out for any type of personal reason. The teacher is there to help them do the poses to the best of their ability. If the student feels picked on then they will not be open to adjustment and guidance. So while it is “personal” in the sense that it is to help you personally, it is not an attack on your person.

There are so many things going on in people’s lives and I understand that a student can walk in and be in a tender state, but if they are there to learn the instructor cannot be concerned with the question of “will adjusting their form hurt their feelings?”  And believe it or not, there is also the other side of the coin. Where some students feel if the instructor doesn’t correct them or give them attention the teacher is slighting them. See how this type of “taking things personal” can just completely affect the effectiveness in class?

If a person is new to yoga and has never been in a class, unless they are at risk for injury, I might not say anything. Yoga is so much about sensing your body, that I believe it is important to let the person get a sense of things. If I say to move the left foot forward about a foot and have the toes point forward, I probably won’t correct a new student right away if they move up a few inches and the toes point off to the side. I want to give them a chance to learn how their body responds. But, if we do that same move multiple times in the class, I might see if they can nudge their foot forward and turn their toes. But I try not to adjust them much in a first class situation. It just seems more appropriate to let them learn some before starting to adjust.

It is very helpful when the instructor knows the students. If a student has been coming to class for a while often times the instructor will learn what that person is capable of. And it could be that someone walks into one of my classes and sees things that they would “correct” if they were a teacher. But perhaps they don’t know that the person whose toes don’t turn out all the way just had leg surgery. Or the person barely bending over has back issues. Or it could be that a student has been adjusted before, but it is just more comfortable for them to do it they way they are doing it. There are so many reasons why an adjustment may not be done.

I just wanted to remind people that teachers do not “pick on” students. We see potential and we are there to help a student reach it. Try not to take it personal either way (if a teacher adjusts you or not).  Hopefully you are able to learn as you go and enjoy what you are getting.

Do you like it when a teacher adjusts you (either verbally or physically)?

Posted in Yoga/PiYo/Pilates | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Last Few Days Of The Goodie Jar

Posted by terrepruitt on December 28, 2016

So we are in the last few days of the year.  2016.  I am seeing so many posts on Facebook about what a terrible year this has been and the majority of those posts have been associated with the fact that a celebrity has died.  Yes, I, too, feel sorrow when someone has died even when it is someone as distant from me as a celebrity.  I certainly feel loss and sorrow when someone close to me, like my father, has died.  It was so unexpected I am still, as times, unbelieving of the fact.  But I don’t condemn the whole year.  There has been a lot of things that have happened in 2016 that have been sad or could be considered “bad”.  But there are a lot of things that have transpired or a lot of things that I experienced that were good things.  Things I wrote down so that the big sad/bad things are not allowed to take over.  So, I am not ending the year saying 2016 was a bad year and I am glad to see it go.

When “bad” things happen, I don’t condemn the whole time in which they happened.  I wrote about something like that in my post I Had One Of THOSE Days.  I don’t think the day is bad when things go “wrong”.  I don’t think the whole year is bad because many of the celebrities from my childhood have died.  I don’t think 2016 is a bad year because my dad died.  It is just a year.  Things happened.  Good things.  Bad things.  Whatever the label.  The things that happened are just moments in time.  There are so many things that transpire.

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, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitWe are still doing our Goodie Jar or Good Things Jar.  This is our fourth year.  We have been writing down the things that make us smile or we have saved a ticket to a show or game, then we put it in a jar.  Right now it is not actually a jar but a Christmas dish.  We have a few more days left to add things to it.  Traditionally, we have read it on New Year’s Eve, but this year we might actually do it on New Year’s Day – depending upon the timing of things, we will have to see.  But the same principle applies.  We are going to read through the notes, printouts, tickets stubs, whatever we used to remind us of all the good things that happened throughout the year.  To be reminded of all the things that made us smile.  Then we will be smiling again.  So it is like a double smile.  All of these things are what makes life good.  All of these things, all of these smiles are what makes us able – make us strong enough – to deal with the “bad” things.

That doesn’t mean we can’t cry or lie around and mope for a few days . . . but it does mean that we can’t ignore or belittle all of the great things that happen in our lives.  This just helps keep us anchored and steady.  The Good Thing Jar is needed sometimes.

In the past our jar has been filled with notes about my Nia students, my yoga students, our cats, our niece, our jobs, our friends, the weather, our house, our food, all the things we are blessed with, all the things that make us smile.  Oh!  I can’t wait.

So what about you?  Do you have any good things that you can reflect upon that happened in 2016?

Posted in Good Things in the Goodie Jar, Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Where You Sit

Posted by terrepruitt on October 17, 2016

I always thought it was sitz boneS, but Wiki says it is sitz boneZ.  I will probably continue to call them sitz bones.  Or get really fancy and call them by the correct name: ischial tuberosity.  I thought I should post a picture of them since I am often instructing students to sit on their sitz bones.  I wanted to make sure that people knew where they were and what they were.  It is easier to consciously sit on something or affect something when you are aware of what it is and where it is.  While this (see below) is not the best rendering of the bones in the hip area I think you can get the idea.

Typically the front upper part of the hip bone structure is thought of and called the hip bones.  But actually the entire bone is the hip bone.  The hip bones are part of the pelvic girdle.  The front portion somewhat at the top, the area we often refer to as the “hip bone,” is the Iliac Crest which is on the edge of the Ilium.  The bottom portion is the ischial tuberosity or sitz bonez.  The sacrum and the coccyx are part of the vertebral column and not considered part of the pelvic girdle.  There are names for other portions and areas of the bones, but since this post is about the sitz bones, I’m not going to list and label them all.

We are all built differently so some of us will have more flesh to get through to actually feel the sitz bones.  And some of us will feel them rather easily.  Either way . . . . we all have them.  We sit on our sitting bones or sitz bones.  My drawing does not clearly show the acetabulum, the place where the head of the femur (thigh bone) fits.  It is about where the words “Tail Bone/Coccyx” is.  You might be able to imagine when the thigh bone is moved to a sitting position, the sitz bones protrude a bit.

In yoga often times the correct way to do the pose is to have both sitz bones on the floor.  In stretching having both stiz bones on the floor is sometimes the way to get the most out of the stretch.  At times the way to do the yoga pose it to be sitting directly “on top” of them.  Other times they might be used as reference points or points of focus.  When in downward facing dog the instruction might be given to reach your sitz bones away to help lengthen the spine and take the weight off of the hands.  For one stretch, one might instruct to pull your foot directly back to your sitz bones.

In Nia we occasionally use the sitz bones and the floor to give our glutes a massage.  Gently moving around on them, perhaps rocking and/or rolling, while sitting on the floor can be a great way to ease the muscles we just danced during the class.

Sitz bones are used a lot and referred to often in yoga, stretch, and Nia, so I thought I should highlight them.

Are you familiar with your sitz bones?

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

2015 Goodie Jar – Almost Time

Posted by terrepruitt on December 22, 2015

It is almost time to read the contents of the Goodie Jar.  Oh yes, the Goodie Jar.  We are still doing it.  We actually have three containers going on.  One was the original one that is the Princess House Pitcher.  That one looked pretty festive (and it was full) so I put it in the China cabinet hoping it could be passed off as a Christmas decoration.  Then the other one is a container that sits on the peninsula and has to be put away to make room for the Christmas decorations that are all over the peninsula.  So I have a note in the present Goodie Jar dish that reminds me to go into the closet to get the planter that we were using to put good things in.  So it is almost time.  I really like this tradition.  I think this is the third year that we have done it.  I am not sure, but I think we will do it again next year.

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 FitI have not read any of the notes in the containers, but I am pretty confident that there will be a few about our cats.  They are such good girls and the certainly make me smile when I think about them.  So I am sure both of us have documented that!  There are always moments that I write down about my students making me smile.  The latest one is my socks.  LOOK!  Aren’t they cool.  They have cats on them AND they can be worn with my flip flops.  I was explaining to my students one day that since I have to rush over to class I didn’t want to put on my socks and shoes and my feet were really cold.  Ya see, in the morning on the way to my first class I wear socks and shoes.  But there is not a lot of time for me to get to my Tuesday morning yoga class after Nia so sometimes I just put on my flip flops after class and my feet get cold.  So one of them picked up on that. Super sweet.  The socks are super cute.  They have cats!!!  She is a cat lover herself!

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 FitLately we have gotten some rain.  And by lately I mean this week.  Rain — for me — always goes in the Good Things Jar because it is really a good thing.

There is just always something that is a good thing that makes me smile.  So many of my friends, family, and students are noted in that jar.

If you have not done a good things jar, I would like to strongly suggested it.  It is such a great way to remember the good things in life.  And it is really fun because you get to get TWO, maybe even THREE, smiles out of them.  One is when the thing occurs, two is when you write it down, and three is when you read it.  And sometimes it is really funny when you read it because it might take you a minute to remember what you were talking about.  Then, if your family and friends (or whomever you are reading them with) are into it, you get to tell them the story.  Often times things that make you smile make for a good story.

Ooooo!  I am getting really excited thinking about it.  Can’t wait!!!

So are you still doing a good jar?  Might you do one next year?

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

A New Goodie Jar

Posted by terrepruitt on May 19, 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, PiYoSo, so, so many things to go into my Goodie Jar.  I think the last mention of it was in March.  MARCH!  Here it is, MAY!  Well, I have been busy filling that jar.  So much so that I had to move it to a different container.  And I think since it is only May this one won’t last long.  Perhaps when this container gets full I will put the papers in the original container, the pitcher and we will just put things in the new container.  It is AWESOME to have to have more than one container to contain the good things!  Wahooo.  This time it is really exciting because my husband has been putting stuff in.  He put things in the pitcher the previous years, but this time he is putting stuff in more often . . . . hence the need for a different container.

My hubby is using some of the ticket stubs and things of that nature as his documentation of the good things.  But he doesn’t just put the item in the jar he writes on it to state why the ticket/used gift card/parking pass/whatever made him smile.  He is doing a great job.  It will be super fun this December 31, 2015 because it will be more stuff from him and not so weighted towards me and my smiles.

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 have had a lot of “student” stuff to put in the Good Thing Jar.  Good things keep coming to them via movement .  Today one woman told me that she is sleeping about two hours longer since starting Nia.  Exercise is often praised for the help it brings to people regarding sleeping.  Some times the help is in the form of better sleep and sometimes it is in the form of more sleep.  I love that she recognized that her sleep benefited from Nia.

I have also had yoga people say this or that has improved.  And, yes, again it is the exercise, the yoga that is helping.  That is what is so awesome.  Hearing people reaping the benefits of movement is definitely Goodie Jar Material.

Recently I was lucky enough to be able to spend some time with my three girlfriends AND my hubby.  That was a special treat.  Our friend that moved away came down for a visit and spent the day with us.  Spending time with my friends is ALWAYS a good thing . . . . so it goes in the jar.  Ya know, anything that makes me smile.

After that, one weekend we dog-sat my husband’s “co-workers” for the weekend.  That was a treat.  That type of thing is a Goodie Jar item.

Oh . . . .just writing about the Good Things in the Goodie Jar is making me smile.  I can’t wait to read it all . . . . but then, I can because that will mean the year is gone.  I will stick to thinking about the smiles in the container.

Well, this is a share and a reminder.  You can start a Goodie Jar anytime.  If you are doing one, have you added to it lately?

 

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

A Breathe Of Fresh Caffeine?

Posted by terrepruitt on June 24, 2014

Wow, you might not believe I have more “stuff” going on.  More on that later.  I am sure I will write a post or two.  You know I always share, it just takes some time sometime.  So, instead – highlights of my day:  a student who has been away from my Nia classes for a bit came to class today.  That was wonderful, unexpected and very timely.  Another student in one of my yoga classes came to class with his own mat.  That put a huge smile on my face.  I took that as a sign that he is “into” it.  Later when I told him I was so happy to see him have his own mat, he said, “Yeah, I got to stick with it!!!!”  Thrilling!  Yes, gotta keep looking at the bright spots.  While perusing my cache of “topics to post about”, I came across one I found interesting.  Could be something you are aware of, perhaps I had heard of it too, but forgot.  I think the studies were done in 2009.  Did you know caffeine could, possibly, help people with asthma breathe better?

There is an article about a small study showing caffeine worked as a bronchodilator.  “A bronchodilator is a substance that dilates the bronchi and bronchioles, decreasing resistance in the respiratory airway and increasing airflow to the lungs.” per Wiki

The small study of 75 people with mild to moderate asthma was done.  Six trails showed 55 people had improved lung function for up to fours hours after consuming caffeine.

A study at the Indiana University show that caffeine an hour before exercise can significantly reduce exercise induced asthma.  I cannot find a link to the Indiana University study, but there are numerous articles about it that surface when a search is done.  One article on ScienceDaily said that it was LARGE amounts of caffeine that were used in this study.  The article stated “9 milligrams of caffeine per kilogram of body weight”.  Ok check my figuring on this using the information from the Mayo Clinic regarding a regular brewed cup of coffee, which is 8 oz brewed coffee has 95-200 mg of caffeine.  That is a big difference, but that is ok, it will still work in my “figuring”.  Let’s use the top, 200 mg of caffeine in a cup of coffee.  Well, lets say average man is 80 kilograms (176.37 pounds), that would be 720 mgs of caffeine.  That is roughly 4.5 cups of strong coffee.  Is that right?  The article also said that smaller amounts – 3 mg – 6 mg per kilogram of body weight “also reduced the wheezing, coughing and other symptoms of” exercise induced asthma.

Interesting.  I know many people who use caffeine to help fuel their workouts.  I know many people who use caffeine to help fuel their day.  So, while I am by NO MEANS saying to use caffeine instead of any physician prescribed medication for asthma . . . I just think it is interesting.  Since it could be that many people with asthma are drinking coffee anyway. I just like when I come across tidbits of information.

What do you think?

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

Challenging Easy Pose

Posted by terrepruitt on February 25, 2014

I love my students. They are a great source to me; they teach me and they make me laugh. Recently one of my students happen to mention a policy that was told to her – a facility stated she could try the class for 10 minutes without charge, but would have to sign up for the class to stay longer. The comments from those that she was sharing this with was that 10 minutes was not really long enough to get a sense of the class and if they would like it. She said, “I know, if I would have only stayed 10 minutes I would have missed the nap time at the end!” That was the best. She, of course, was kidding . . . sort of. She was talking about Shavasana. A very important part, yet for many, one of the most difficult times in yoga.

She was kidding in the sense that we all know it is not nap time, but not having been familiar with yoga she would have missed seeing that part of the class if she had only been allowed to stay for 10 minutes. Shavasana is a pose of total relaxation. It is where you allow your body to rest and relax from the workout it just participated in. In some classes this is a necessary time for recuperation of the body, but in others it might not be so much about the body. In a Gentle Yoga class it could be more about the mind. In Nia we have BMES – Body, Mind, Emotion, and Spirit. We could say that shavasana is a time for those four things. So after a nice gentle class it could be more a time more for the mind, emotion, and spirit to relax. While the inner dialog should be kept to a minimum while practicing the asanas it is even more important to do so during shavasana. This is the time when the body absorbs all the goodness from the poses it just performed.

I had once thought that you DID shavasana IN the corpse pose, but the name comes from the Sanskrit words Shava meaning “corpse” or dead body and Asana meaning “posture”.*

One of the reasons shavasana is so difficult is because there is not supposed to be any inner dialog going on (as I just mentioned). This is not the time where you begin making your shopping list for your trip to the store after class, or where you decide what you are going to say to your boss/friend/spouse. This is a time of quiet, a time of reflection, a time where you do a “body check”. Check in with each body part or area of your body to see if it needs any attention, see if it needs to be relaxed and focus on allowing it to relax. Sometimes because of this relaxation one might fall asleep. When I first started every time I did shavasana I fell asleep. Now I don’t, I am better at being mindfully relaxed. It is a practice though. This might not be something that comes easy to you, it might be a challenge, but it is something worth practicing.

I’ve heard different ideas on how to hold shavasana in a class. Some say that a guided meditation is the way it should be done. Some say that total silence is the only right way. Some say some music or nature sounds should accompany this pose. In my classes I usually softly lead the participants into a relaxed state. Then I allow them quiet time with this pose — I do have sounds playing during class and I don’t turn that off, but sometimes I turn it down. Then after the time allowed I talk them back to awakening their bodies and moving again.

If this pose and time is not something that you include in your yoga practice, I encourage you to give it a go. Try it. If you fall asleep that is ok. But keep doing it and when you are able to achieve that relaxed state while staying awake you will see how powerful this simple pose is.

Do you practice shavasana? Have you ever fallen asleep during shavasana? How long do you stay in this pose?

*Wiki and Jaisiyaram

Posted in Yoga/PiYo/Pilates | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »