Nia “ why its the hot new health groove


Nia dance – health through movement

So you think you can dance? Well you can and get healthy with Nia “ the hot, new, fun, holistic dance class thats sweeping Australia. Nia promises a full body workout and inner balance

Nia dance – health through movement

Dance is a fantastic way to get fit and feel fabulous and Nia, a fun, holistic class which blends nine different movement forms is, says Julie Bartley, brown belt Nia instructor, œmedicine for the body and soul.œIts an opportunity for whole-body conditioning and its about the joy of movement, its also about saying connected to the body and enjoying all it has to offer, she says. Nia is new to Australia but is fast becoming an incredibly popular discipline, with dozens of classes springing up across the country.

  What is it?

Nia is a funky fusion of flowing dance, the power and ease of martial arts and the balance of healing arts such as the Alexander Technique and Yoga. Its moved barefoot to uplifting, eclectic music and is safe for any fitness level, body shape and age. Classes last for an hour and are guided, however the great thing is that you dont have to learn complicated dance steps “ its all about free expression. œIts a feel good, workout where there is no wrong way to dance, says Bartley. 

 The benefits

According to Debbie Rosas, co-creator of the Nia technique, œNia can empower people to achieve physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well being. œThe blending of the different modalities are brought together in such a way that body, mind, emotions and spirit are put on the same page, says Rosas. Apart from bringing you into balance, the dance class also delivers body and cardiovascular conditioning, so its a work-out too.

Nia is for EveryBody

Nia is taught in over 37 countries. U.S. fitness professionals Debbie and Carlos Rosas created it, combining what they viewed as the intelligence and creativity of Eastern and Western philosophies. Their intention was to bring more safety, joy and awareness into exercise by using different forms, to offer a broader and more whole-body workout. The result was the first fusion fitness to be known as ˜mindful exercise. Since 1983, Nia has evolved through a structured teacher-training program modeled on the martial arts belt system. There are currently over 40 licensed Nia teachers in Australia. However if you cant make it to teacher-guided class there are a range of DVDs available from the Nia Australia website, so you can do it at home in front of the T.V.

Dancing through life 

For Julie, who runs classes in Byron Bay, Nia dance has been a life-changing discovery. “I danced as a young girl and Nia has helped me reconnect to that exhilarating passion that comes from dance,”she explains. “I wanted to recreate that in my life and so decided to become a Nia teacher so that I could do Nia every day! That decision was a turning point and since then my life has been transformed on all levels. I feel fitter, healthier and happier than I have ever been.”

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Profile: Julie is a trained Brownbelt Nia instructor and comes from a dance and healing arts background. She has a Diploma in Shiatsu and Aromatherapy, is a Dip Ed (Prim) and has completed the Journey Practitioner Program. She brings a freshness and enthusiasm to her classes where the emphasis is to have fun and enjoy the process of moving our bodies, no matter what age, experience or fitness level. œMy first Nia experience woke me up to the joy of movement again “ something I hadnt experienced since a child. I realized that nothing else can give me such a powerful surge of energy and bliss as Nia. Nia brings this to me right here, right now ." Nia - Now I Am!!


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