My Black Belt Journey Into the Unknown


By: Susan Muttitt, Black Belt, Johannesburg, South Africa  |  August 28, 2009

The Black Belt experience was truly an adventure with all the elements to call it that; unpredictable, surprising, grueling in parts, exhilarating and highly stimulating for the creative soul. Debbie and Carlos held the space magnificently for 45 of us from all corners of the world to step into this empowering journey.

My intention was set; to grow through mastering the basics of Nia and transferring more mastery into my daily life. No-one could have prepared me for what I was to experience. The Belt stretched every edge of my Nia knowledge and creativity. The connections with my Black Belt colleagues felt supportive and enabled me to find new courage in the darkest and most frightening places. Affirming to me what this journey is all about, connecting to my fellow Nia colleagues through community and love, is the only way for me.

I felt honoured to have had the privilege to be “held” by Debbie and Carlos. Their creative gifts were so generously shared with us. I felt each person’s authenticity emerge; the empowerment of baring witness to this process in 45 people was deep and profound. The personal input and exquisite love and nurturing of Debbie blew me away! I appreciated Jeff’s generosity of time spent tirelessly photo-shooting 45 people individually and being so personally involved. The uniqueness of Carlos and his ability to create new adventures and stimulate “creative tension” was a blast!

The Graduation Initiation Ceremony lasted hours, and at the end, no-one wanted to leave the sweltering hot and humid room, even though we had tirelessly held space for each other to be received in our individual dances.

What I bring back for myself is the honour to know all these wonderful people and the enormity of how connected we all are. And yes, the soul of Nia is The Joy of Movement, but the heart of Nia is our connectedness. My spirit soars with this vibration in all of my trillions of cells. I step forward with my “Black Belt Eyes” into learning more of the magic of the inter-connectedness of the White, Blue and Brown Belts. Being a “Beginner” again is truly a spell that I’m happy to be under. 

Thank you to all my teachers and colleagues in S.A. and to Ann Christiansen, our Trainer, who without doubt, I would not have been ready to do this magnificent Journey.