Monday, April 27, 2009

Nia tidbit #113 Alexander Technique and Nia

Hi everyone,
I am so proud to share this email with you. It's a snippet that one you ( thank you Martin) sent me describing how he experiences Nia. I think it shows how Nia is great for men and women,any age/size and how it touches different kinds of people in so many different ways. It's also an example of how the movement form below touches us through imagery and movement of the head.
We've been focusing all last week on Alexander Technique, one of the 9 movement forms. Frederick M Alexander developed this system of healing to heal himself from a throat problem that effected his acting career. Dancers took to it quickly and then it expanded even more when doctors began sending patients to him who were depressed, breathing disorders, unexplained aches and pains, back ache, arthritis, fatigue, headaches, gastro intestinal conditions, and certain sexual conditions. Through conscious "use" of the body, looking at the body from a "whole" perspective, and utilizing "non-interference" or " inhibition" and then "conscious direction" , movement ( and thus emotions, thoughts, beliefs etc) habits are gently shifted to make room for a better functioning body and mind. It all happens in the "non-doing" , meaning it takes not changing the body through the "stand up straight, chest out , stomach in " approach, but rather through inviting a forward and up position of the head as it relates to the spine and then waiting and feeling for a new experience of the posture in the body as it walks, sits, lays down, dances and functions in life. This gentle approach helps to re-establish neural pathways by bypassing the outward act and creating change from the inside out. Another aspect of Alexander Technique is using the eyes to look and engage the energy body. The mirror was a tool Alexander used to notice how he did simple things like sitting in a chair and then initiating a new alignment of head and neck, and eyes, as he practiced and developed his method of change. It's truly "Dancing thru Life" in practice. I hope to see you in class this week to deepen your connection to Alexander Technique and to bring Dancing Thru Life into your day! love, Kelly

"When I first heard of Nia, it was from a friend who lived in Orlando and drove to Sarasota to participate in Kelly Atkins’ Nia classes. It had be good, I thought, for her to drive that far. I had started taking Yoga classes a few weeks earlier and I was already on the path of self-discovery, so I decided to try Nia. Now, picture this: a single guy in his early 40’s, business executive, likes fast cars and being a guy. That was me. And there I was, in Kelly’s Nia class – the only guy in a group of women – acting playful and silly, seeking pleasure and nurturing my body. Nurturing? What’s that? Well, let me tell you… For the first few weeks, I found it hard to leave my machismo at the door and shed my inhibitions in front of all those women. At the same time, I felt a sense freedom every time I stepped in, so I kept coming back. It wasn't long before I was able drop the masks I'd been carrying for years and give in to the pure pleasure of Nia. When I come to Kelly’s class, it’s as if I'm able to leave the material world behind and enter a magical world that Kelly creates for her students. The room transforms form a stormy sea to a tropical forest with butterflies, from soaring over cliffs like an eagle to touching the inside of a transparent sphere, from pounding on a drum to enveloping myself in an invisible cloak… the magic is infinite. To me Nia is a place where everything is possible, where I can create my present and my future exactly the way I want it to be. There are no boundaries and everything simply flows. I am part of the Creation." -Martin Turneau

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