Through a break in icy storms and despite grey skies that tempt us to hunker down and stay inside, many women joined us on Opening Day and danced Castle Rock's first Nia class.
This first class was really unique because many of the people who came to try the fitness class had never taken a Nia class before. The excitement of a group of people willing to try something new was contagious and our teacher, Julia Desmond, patiently guided us through the different movements in Nia (pronounced "knee-ah").
A Nia class is perfect for any level of fitness. One participant on Opening Day was a yoga teacher, one a Pilates teacher, and several were women who had long given up on group fitness classes because of injuries but for some reason, decided to give Nia a chance.
Why does Nia have such a broad appeal? It is because it is an individual's fitness program in a group setting. There are three levels in Nia, logically labeled Levels One, Two, and Three. A person who isn't as comfortable with the dance techniques, like myself, will move through the dance moves at a Level One, which means we don't include our arms and focus on watching our feet tangle around each other until our brain finally learns how to move both arms and legs in harmony. I keep telling myself that with practice, we can all learn to pat our heads and rub our tummies at the same time. Eventually it all comes together and in the meantime, Nia teachers insist that we learn and move at our own pace.
Level Two in Nia is when you are engaging your entire body through each of the moves. Then, with Level Three, you can pick up the pace, deepen your knee bends, or stretch your arms out a little further. It is such a relief to be in a group class that doesn't force each of us to conform to a particular "ideal."
Not only was our Nia classes warmly welcomed by the women who have been attending class and bringing their friends, our program also appeared in two local papers. One paper (this paper), the Castle Rock Your Hub (a Denver Post publication) featured an article I wrote about how Nia is different from yoga. The online version of this article can be found at: http://denver.yourhub.com/CastleRock/Blogs/Health-Fitness/Blog~590917.aspx
Also, Castle Rock News Press featured Castle Rock Nia Fitness Studio in an article on new businesses starting in our current economy. I really appreciated writer, Chris Michlewicz's coverage. If you missed the article, you can find the online version at: http://www.coloradocommunitynewspapers.com/articles/2009/04/02/news_press/news/03_cm_entrepreneurs_all.txt
Thank you all who were a part of our fun Grand Opening. Our teacher, Julia and I look forward to sharing more Nia with you and getting to know you better.