Nia Testimonial: Denis Karda, Nia Teacher
MRT(R), Reiki Level I, RYT, Nia Brown Belt Teacher
I worked as an X-Ray Technologist for 20 years, and have a full background in dance (though this has proved to be more of a hurdle than an advantage when it comes to doing Nia). I began teaching Nia in January 2008, and quickly realized that my Sacred Livelihood was to share this passion. I quit working at the hospital at the end of that year. Boy oh boy, my "hospital ego" did not want to lose that title (and put up such a fuss), but Nia won hands down. I began to ready myself to go full tilt at my studio.
I've taken both the Nia White Belt Training and the Nia Blue Belt Training. They have given me the tools to pursue my passion and communicate clearly with my family. I also believe they will help me achieve my goal to 100% purely love my body with no exclusions – a goal that is a work in progress, since I suffered with severe anorexia and bulimia from the ages of 12 - 24.
I am now a mother of four teenagers. Through all the challenges that come with motherhood and relationships, I have remained focused on practicing all of the Nia Principles. Nia keeps me at the hub of my wagon wheel of life. All is good as long as I don't ride on the spokes or somehow end up 'beside myself' riding out the rim! Nia is the hub of my life! I think I'll hang out with Nia for the rest of my long life.
Why do you practice and/or teach Nia?
It's my birthright to experience Joy. I have much gratitude for the balance this brings to the chaos of my life situations. Nia is my lifestyle choice that continues to transform me. All of my closest friends and family members have shifted without even realizing it. Just being in my presence as I live my Nia lifestyle has impacted them like a ripple on a calm body of water.
Students often ask if they can get fit doing Nia. I let them know that the visual physical change is just an added bonus (the icing on the cake) to a holistic transformation. The physical image that appears is the fabric that lays over the heart of the matter.
Where and with whom do you take Nia classes and/or trainings?
I started taking classes with Judith Thompson in 1999 in Ballinfad, Ontario Canada. I was not OPEN to receive Nia. I had my dancer's eyes "ON" and was so full of judgement. But for some reason I kept coming back. One day, Judith invited us to pick someone to share the next freedance with. Before hearing the music, I choose to dance with my father, who had been promoted from his earthly role about five years earlier. A fast song came on. I closed my eyes, I could smell his scent and sense the warmth of his lips pressing on my forehead. I swayed back and forth in natural time with tears of pure JOY streaming down my face. Now I continue to frequently dance with my dad whenever I so choose. That day my receiving light for Nia was turned "ON."
In December '07, I took my White Belt Training with Martha Randall in Toronto and began teaching in January '08. I travelled to Texas to take my Blue Belt Training with Helen Terry. I have had the wonderful opportunity to audit several White Belt Training sessions with Roberta Mohler and Martha Randall. I rallied the Canadian troupes and drove down to New York to represent Nia at the Dance Parade. I danced down Broadway and on stage with Winalee Zeeb and Kevin Verecke. I took Nia 5 Stages with Debbie Rosas in June '09. I had the pleasure of experiencing Carlos AyaRosas' Heart of Nia in Toronto in June '09. I attended NiaPalooza in London, Ontario with Winalee Zeeb two years in a row. I immediately fell in love with the pulsations of love, peace and gratitude that Winalee had to offer.
In December '09 I travelled to Israel to experience the White Belt Training with my blue eyes, all the while soaking up as much of Winalee Zeeb as possible. In March '10, I traveled to Boston to take Green Belt Training with Carlos while Debbie transcribed what I believe to be every breath. This was a wonderful experience with 43 other teachers and six amazing trainers. I recently produced a Canadian Blue Belt with Helen Terry as the trainer in August for 2010. I selfishly planned this to prepare myself for Brown Belt Training in October 2010. AND I have only just begun. I continue to take classes far and wide with teachers anywhere I can. I am bringing more nourishing thoughts to my relationship with my teacher DVDs. I need to focus on what is preventing me from showing up and turning the DVDs on more regularly.
What is one thing most people don't know about Nia?
Nia provides the best 'holistic being' extended warranty package with an endless supply of high test fuel on this planet. Love your body! It's your earthly vehicle. How you choose to maintain and fuel it will directly affect its function and longevity.
What tip can you give someone who is considering trying Nia for the first time?
#1. Observe your teacher. Move the base of the body first, then add the core. Spice it up with the upper extremities of the body.
#2. If it seems awkward, blame it on your central nervous system.
#3. If the movement isn't full of JOY, tweak it 'til your heart's content.
#4. Take more than one class, withholding judgement of self, others and the teacher. All will unfold the way it should.
#5. Invite the mind to empty. Observe the movements and let your body move you. Your mind is the middle man and can tend to muddle, deceive and interject negative chatter. Listen and let it go. Move on.