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Next Generation of Trainers


By Tracy Revell on July 10, 2011

I love the way Ann Christiansen described Symbology to the "Rockstars" recently.  "The  "picture" frame ability, to be aware of each sequence of the move not just beginning and end.  To visualize the move before doing it and let the body slip into a shape that is already in my conciousness."

In the Book "Yoga Anatomy", Leslie Kaminoff states that "The deepest principles of yoga are based on a subtle and profound appreciation of how the human system is constructed.  The subject of the study of yoga is the Self, and the Self is dwelling in a physical body."  I would say that this statement also applies perfectly to Nia, simply take out the word "Yoga" where it appears and replace it with "Nia".  For me, Symbology is attention to energy detail expressed through the design of the body in every aspect of my teaching and moving it into each aspect of my life.  This means being plugged in energetically to:  the music, my movement, the focus, the cycle, sensation and the magic of the Nia experience I am creating. I view my body as an energy symbol. I experience a sensation of being tuned in, magnified, and resonating energy. I use it to stalk myself as I teach and move through life.

I work with body-part orientation in all aspects of my work; from Nia to one-on-one whole body strength and conditioning training to Pilates-based work, I am incorporating knowledge of the connection from one part of the body (one muscle to a bone, how each muscle interplays with another within the body's structure, etc.)  By practicing the fine tuning of symbology, I have learned and continue to fine tune my relationship with my body and how It carries itself and therefore me.  I have also learned how to impart this to my clients and students, to help them with their bodies' structures and to be aware of how they carry themselves and what they put out into the world.

I have been conciously working with and on my practice of symbology a huge amount during this last year and this NGT process.  For instance, one of the big pieces for me is the work I have been doing on the last little bit of forward rounding of the shoulders I had developed to hide myself and make myself smaller. To do this, I pull my shoulder blades back and down by engaging the upper back muscles that support and direct them and lengthening the chest and shoulder muscles that pull the shoulders forward.  Realizing how different body parts are connected has helped me in my awareness of how my different parts are connected physically as well as energetically and how to shift those relationships so that on all levels, I portray what I want to embody and stand for.