American Way - The Nia Way
By Jenny Block | American Way :: April, 2011
"At its very heart, Nia is a practice founded in sensations of the body and awareness of the mind and revealed through dancing. Really, really fun dancing. The 52 moves on which all of the routines are based — the rhythms, the philosophy, the focus on natural time, all of it — are infectious. Once your body gets a taste of feeling that good, you get hooked. It might be the promise of great exercise that gets people in the door. But it’s the mental, spiritual and emotional components that keep them coming back for more."
If the ’80s fitness craze was about ignoring what your body had to say, the wave of the future is listening to it. During the high-impact aerobics and Nautilus machine days, trainers preached, “No pain, no gain.” And, yeah, people lost weight and got buff. But what they didn’t do was stick around. That’s the thing with trends — especially trends that turn out to do as much, if not more, harm as good.
In 1983, aerobics instructors Debbie Rosas and Carlos AyaRosas were a major part of that universe. That is, until they decided to leave the traditional fitness world behind after watching a number of their teachers and students alike become injured and disenchanted. Rosas and AyaRosas were ready for something completely new, something that involved listening to the body’s inner voice rather than what the outside world was saying.