Combining dance, martial arts and mindfulness, Nia (neuromuscular integrative action) tones your body while transforming your mind. More than just a workout, Nia is a holistic fitness practice addressing each aspect of your life – body, mind and soul.
We believe every person can discover, explore, unleash, and enhance their individual potential to live a healthy and meaningful life by engaging their senses and listening to their bodies.
Nia is based on the intelligent design of the body. Each workout brings mindfulness to your dance movement experience leaving you energized, mentally clear, and emotionally balanced.
Nia cardio-dance workouts combine 52 simple moves with dance arts, martial arts, and healing arts to get you fit in 60 minutes – body, mind, emotion, and spirit.
Nia is non-impact, practiced barefoot, and adaptable to individual needs and abilities. Nia is self-paced and teaches us to self-condition and to self-heal.
I believe the major gift of Nia is that we are trained to move the way the body is designed to move and in so doing we access, move, and integrate our entire being; body, mind, emotion and spirit! We are whole.
“We live in two separate worlds: the physical and the spiritual. Our bodies allow us to see, hear, smell, touch, and taste the physical world. When we are “in our bodies” and “in the physical world” our experience is grounded in our physical reality. Physical grounding brings mindfulness of the blessings of our physical being and provides healthy counterweight to our spiritual perambulations. Our spiritual side allows us to think whatever we want to think, however we want to think about it, whenever we want to think about it. Thought is the tool with which we create our spiritual reality (we can’t touch, see, taste smell or hear it, so it is not of the physical world!). But without the anchor of physical grounding, we become increasingly at risk for thinking ourselves into spiritual dis-ease, a sense of teetering out of balance. Keeping healthy balance requires living well in both worlds simultaneously. Today’s culture pulls us out of our bodies, away from meaningful physical activity and grounding. We don’t use our bodies well. We may lose that early awareness of our love of our physical presence and being that constitutes our earliest developmental experiences, or we may even focus exclusively on physical dis-ease and lose our love of our own physical person. That loss of physical anchor increases the possibility of spiritual distress.
Life Force Sanctuary is a welcoming, safe, supportive, loving place. Elaine Wolf knows the “missing link” bridging the gap between the physical and the spiritual. She has created extremely affordable programs and opportunities that invite you to “come” to your health via elegantly guided and accessible physical and spiritual activities artfully calibrated to empower you to discover (or more likely rediscover) and cultivate your innate health – the balance and power of a healthy physical and spiritual awareness and practice.” (Phil Eisenman M.A,Ed., CAS)
“When was the last time you went to the gym and had fun?
I realized most of my exercise routine was static, stretching, weight training, but not dynamic, not enough movement for overall health. Nia offers several benefits:
The continuous motion is great cardio
The varied movements improve balance and coordination
The routines involve full body motion, great for muscle tone and flexibility
But most of all, it doesn’t just feel good, Nia is fun!
Nia is not competitive, we aren’t there to out do one another, it’s your motion in your time. You don’t need to be a dancer or an athlete to enjoy Nia.”
John – age 66
“Wow, this is something. I am learning how to be in my body and play in my body. The movements are accessible and connect energetic and physical body.”
Alicia, age 28
Nia Offers Us
We gain literal balance with the stances and steps of Nia and by consciously shifting our weight often. We direct our movements in balanced ways; from left to right, up and down and around, inward and outward, across the hemispheres of the brain and with circular and spherical motion. We balance movements of the lower body, through our core (pelvis, chest and head) and out our upper extremities. We also achieve energetic balance by balancing yin (soft, feminine, inward, smooth and melodic) with yang (outward, rhythmic, and explosive). The body loves symmetry and full expression! Nia also offers us balance of sensation (stability, strength, flexibility, mobility and agility) and conditioning.
We gain the ability to move with maximum efficiency and minimal effort. Dynamic Ease is the perfect balance of power and grace. Dynamic Ease allows us to move in a variety of ways with relaxation, ease, and pleasure. Focusing on moving with ease, pleasure and comfort allows us to keep moving. We are energized after class and yet wake up without pain. We condition with awareness and compassion.
We gain access to our entire being with the 52 Moves of Nia. The 52 Moves of Nia are designed to get us into the major joints of the body (ankles, knees, hips, wrists, elbow, shoulder, and spine). We open and stabilize our joints and increase mobility consciously. Movement variety is also gained with Nia’s focus on the dance arts (modern, jazz and Duncan), martial arts (Tai Chi, Tae Kwon Do and Aikido) and the aligning techniques of Yoga. The wisdom of Moshe Feldenkreis and the Alexander Technique offer us subtle connections to sensation, energy and alignment. Each of these art forms have personalities and energy dynamics we can connect with and express in our own unique ways. The music variety of Nia is also stimulating for the brain and body. We get out of our habitual ways of moving and wake up the body!
Sustainable, Full Body fitness and Conditioning:
Moving with Dynamic Ease and variety in balanced ways allows us to age gracefully and to keep moving! This is movement you can practice for the rest of your life!
I believe one of Nia’s greatest gifts is the movement and conditioning of the spine. I have been an athlete, dancer and healer most of my life. I love to move and always seek the sensation of feeling better. This has led me to practice many different movement forms and healing practices. Nia is most healing for me! Nia encourages us to move and condition our entire spine. The circular and spiraling movements of Nia offer us fluid mobility and agility in the spine like no other practice I have experienced. I have practiced many forms of yoga for 20 years and enjoy it immensely. Yoga, like Nia, has offered me strength and flexibility of the spine yet not the supple, fluid movement I choose to age gracefully.
I cannot say enough about the unique contribution that Nia makes to fitness and conditioning. Accessing the whole spine with the blend of circular and spiraling motion, allows us to touch every system (muscular, skeletal, circulatory, respiratory, nervous, lymphatic or immune, reproductive, urinary, digestive, endocrine, skin) and thus every organ of the body! We don’t just condition the body, we condition our whole being!