Nia Testimonial: John Snell, Nia Teacher
Undergraduate Degree in Business Administration, Therapist
I was a senior adminstrator in an outpatient rehabilitation clinic for many years. I taught fitness part time as well. Being caught up in a corporate merger in March of 1998 enabled me to work full time at a local destination spa. I became their Fitness Director and was introduced to Nia on September 21, 1998. My life took a complete change from that weekend on. The spa hired a Nia teacher from upstate New York until the winter of 1999. I traveled to Portland and met Debbie Rosas and Carlos AyaRosas for a very intense week to earn my White Belt. I returned back to Connecticut and started spreading the word of Nia.
I started teaching Nia in my local remote town in January of 2000, while still employed by the spa. My members kept increasing, and we had to rent a larger space. This happened a few times until I opened my own studio in 2007. My studio attracts many, and I have expanded my practice as both a fitness instructor and therapist.
Recently, I endured a hernia surgery. My concern was that I would not be able to do Nia for an extended period of time. I was released by my surgeon six days after surgery. I am ready to teach my first Nia class again, 15 days after my surgery, with much joy in my heart. It is my love of Nia which carried me through this challenging time.
Why do you practice and/or teach Nia?
Nia is my foundation. It brings much joy into my life.
Where and with whom do you take Nia classes and/or trainings?
I hold Nia classes at my studio, Nia Connecticut. I currently teach five Nia classes weekly.
What is one thing most people don't know about Nia?
Nia is not just an exercise program; it is a healing modality, working from the inside out. Many think of Nia as just another form of exercise to lose weight. You do lose weight, but you also build a strong mind and body.
What tip can you give someone who is considering trying Nia for the first time?
Take a deep breath. Put all thoughts out of your mind. Get into the moment and allow your body to respond not only to the teacher but also to the music. Allow self-expression to take over the moment, and enojy the next hour to its fullest.
Do you really have to go barefoot in a Nia class?
You can do whatever makes you feel more comfortable. If you want to wear footwear, try opting for soft, flexible-soled shoes. It is all about tapping into the joy of movement.