September 11, 2007
by Heather Strang
I was sick of the treadmill. Okay, let’s be honest…I was sick of every piece of gym equipment and workout DVD ever made. So, on a recent walk through my neighborhood (hey, anything to keep moving!), a sign, announcing a free Nia class at a new movement center, caught my eye. It was dance-oriented and free. Since moving in with my boyfriend, my late night dance parties for one in my living room had come to a screeching halt. Checking out the class seemed like a great way to get my groove on in a new environment.
At the end of my first Nia class, I was hooked. Remember how tough it was to follow the complicated dance sequences at your gym's hip-hop class? I always looked like a spaz, so I gave up. However, with Nia, I'm able to completely honor my own form of movement and expression because much of the workout allows you to free dance and move in ways that feel best for you.
Sweaty, feeling sexy and invigorated, I signed up for weekly classes. After my first workout, I was shocked to discover how sore I was. I was sore in a part of my body I've been trying to tighten and beat into submission ever since I bought my first bikini…my abs and love handles. Ladies, I know you feel my pain. What workout haven't we tried to flatten, tone and tighten? Finally, my abs, triceps and quads are getting a workout that feels good and is good for me. And not to worry, Nia gives you the good kind of sore, not the "I'm dying in pain" feeling that often comes from spinning classes and other gym torture devices.
Nia is a combination of dance, martial arts and yoga, using 52 movements that focus on the pleasure principle…if it feels good, do it; if it doesn't, don't. How empowering is that?! It's set to erotic and upbeat music (think striptease, not porn), and allows you, as a woman, to connect with your femininity. It is the most empowering workout I've ever encountered.
Nia has even been attributed to physical healing…helping women with arthritic conditions, fibromyalgia and depression. For me personally, it's been empowering on every level. As a side benefit, my body feels and looks better. AND, I don't have to walk on the treadmill. Woohoo!
To learn more or find a Nia center/teacher near you, visit www.nianow.com.