The Body's Way in My Mother Tongue

I just had to share this wonderful story from Maria Skinner, who wrote me to share yet another inspiring story about how Nia is bringing love, pleasure and health to people’s lives around the world.


April 18, 2010

Hi Debbie,

I wanted to share this really cool experience I had last weekend.

I have been teaching Nia at the Lowell Hospital Bariatric Clinic since last May. Most of my students have either had the bariatric surgery or are awaiting it. Some of them are big people, some of them are have lost over 100 pounds. And they LOVE Nia. I learned last week that the Nia class has been the only exercise class that has not dwindled and faded away there. It continues to grow and there are some people who are truly devoted and learning to really love their bodies in ways that they never thought possible.

Last weekend, I presented Nia to their Latino Support group. This was a first time that I taught Nia completely in Spanish. Now, my Spanish is not bad – I lived in Uruguay until I was 8 – but I did not expect the language of Nia to flow so easily from me in Spanish! It was blissful to share The Body's Way in my mother tongue.

There were about 60 people in the room. People from Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Guatemala...They came with their families; women, men and children of all ages. About half of them sat and watched. The other half danced like I have never seen a roomful of people dance before. A few started dropping off as they got tired. At the end, several women came up to me and asked when the Nia class is. Several men who had been dancing the whole time gave me a wink and nod. I was not sure what to make of this participation since the half that were sitting around were chit-chatting the whole time and being spectators, as if at a dinner club. When I checked in with the organizer, her take was that it was a smashing success! She said that when the Latino support group does not like the presenter, they just walk out. And not one person walked out. So I am hoping to get a Nia class in Spanish going on there!

There is funding for work with Latinos so I am hoping to bring not just Nia classes but also some of the Nia principles in to work with this population. I'll keep you updated as it seems like a place where making inroads could be both deeply beneficial for this group and also lucrative for those of us sharing this amazing work.


Maria Skinner
Nia Black Belt Teacher