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If you look up the classes I teach on the gym schedule, you’ll find them listed under “Body Mind Classes” as opposed to “Group Exercise Classes.” After 20 years of having my work categorized in this way, I find the arbitrary distinction sometimes hilarious, sometimes exasperating. Catch me in the right mood, and I can go on a serious rant. I mean seriously: what Body Pump or High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) class isn’t using both body and mind and what yoga or Nia class isn’t group exercise? Don’t even get me started.

If I got to describe the practice we do together, I would call it movement, not exercise or dance or martial arts. I would say it is systemic, whole-body and sensory-centered. I would say that it is about presence, awareness and responsiveness. I would say it creates health through integration and is as much about what we do outside the studio as it is what we do in it.

I might call it Seselelame.

Seselelame is a West African word that a genius coach friend taught me not long ago. She learned it from Philip Shepherd’s book Radical Wholeness in which seselelame is described as “an inner realm in which all the world is felt.” I haven’t read Shepherd’s book but this term captures my imagination.

Kathryn Geurts’ academic work and her book Culture and the Senses: Bodily Ways of Knowing in an African Community
describes the holistic quality of seselelame and how it encompasses sensation both internal and external, physical and emotional, everything in the world inside and out.

Our western view of the senses, on the other hand, is utterly external. From our “five senses” perspective, we see what is outside us, hear what is outside us. Taste, touch, smell what is outside. Other cultures think of balance as a sense and physiologists know that proprioception and interoception (see my post about these here) are senses that are essential to our human functioning. But we westerners are all about what’s out there.

Seselelame is translated as “feel feel at flesh inside” which recognizes that the entire human experience is felt in our bodies. The approach is used by dancers to balance choreography with improvisation, training with intuition, cooperation with competition. I loved watching this video and considering the question it poses, “How does dance enable you to understand who you are?”

Maybe if I was asked to describe the practice we do together, I’d call it HIIT: Holistic Integrated Interoceptive Training. Maybe I’d call it Seselelame: Feel Feel At Flesh Inside While Moving To Groovy Music. And maybe that’s why I’m not in the marketing department.

This week, let’s dive into the question, “How does movement enable you to understand who you are?”

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strong back cracks 120915
What do you notice after a week of focusing on the mid-back/thoracic spine? I’m noticing more pliability in my chest and more strength in my back…and some soreness between my ribs! I’d love to hear how the practice is reverberating for you.

Below are all the playlists for the week. You can listen to all the playlists for free on Spotify https://www.spotify.com/us/ ! Sign up for free, follow me at “susanmcculley” and you’ll find my public playlists ~ just click and listen! No matter where you are, we can listen and dance together!

Here are some cool things you want to know about:

• Embracing Darkness: A Special Winter Class with Mary Linn & Susan ~ Friday, December 11, 6-7pm at Buck Mountain Episcopal Church Parish Hall – 4133 Earlysville Rd, Earlysville, VA 22936 (it’s the small white building just past the church with a YOGA sign out front).

As the dark edges closer and closer to our doors, we have a choice about how to approach this time of year. We can huddle and steel against it, we can glitter and holly jolly over it, or we can embrace it. Please join Mary Linn and Susan for a special class of movement and music that invites the whole-hearted embrace of the darkness that is essential to growth and life. Rich instrumental, gospel and live vocal music by our friend and fellow Nia dancer, Guy Lushin, underscores the focus on peaceful mindful presence we can choose to cultivate. Pay what you can (proceeds go to the Health & Wellness Ministry at Buck Mountain Episcopal). No experience or spiritual practice needed. All are welcome.

• Introduction to Ageless Grace at ACAC Downtown Studio A, Thursdays: December 17 and 31, 1:30-2:15

Ageless Grace is a fitness and wellness program designed for all ages and abilities. It combines physical activity, brain exercises, imagination and a sense of humor with music to stimulate a sense of pleasure and well-being! It is done seated, making it inviting for those with physical or cognitive limitations, balance concerns, or healing issues. There is no choreography to learn. Movements are easy, natural and organic and varied based on the music! Come experience how we can create lifelong comfort and ease physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Sheila Queen, Ageless Grace Certified Educator, will offer this introductory class December 17 and 31, 130-215pm at acac Downtown, Studio A. On December 17, members can bring a friend for free.

• dance. sit. write. draw. Saturday, January 23, 2016 – Registration now open!

We’re dancing, sitting and writing again and this time, we’re drawing, too! Join me for a day of exploration at the intersection of movement, stillness and creativity. Find all the information here and register at here on my new web site, http://www.susanmcculley.com

As always, please let me know if you have questions or how I can help more.
Dance on. Shine on.

Susan sig

*** PLAYLIST NOTE: My playlists can also be found on Spotify https://www.spotify.com/us/ by following “susanmcculley” (no space) and look for Public Playlists. Sometimes music is not available on Spotify so I may replace with another version or skip songs . ***

Monday, Dec 7, 2015, 1045am ~ Classic Thoracic

The Rising 4:47 Bruce Springsteen
A Different Space 8:43 Bob Holroyd
Back to the Earth 5:27 Rusted Root
Belly Belly Nice 3:53 Dave Matthews Band
Mussiki é (Jungle Mix) 7:11 Miango
Mad World (feat. Safri Duo & Isam B) [Raaban Edit] 3:34 Michael Parsberg
Ecstasy 5:02 Rusted Root
Groove Is In The Heart 3:52 Deee-Lite
Black Velvet 4:46 Alannah Myles
Climb On (A Back That’s Strong) 4:16 Shawn Colvin
Long Bone 5:16 Sofa Surfers
One Zero Two 3:02 Alucidnation

Tuesday, Dec 8, 2015, 840am ~ Classic Thoracic

The Rising 4:47 Bruce Springsteen
Back to the Earth 5:27 Rusted Root When I Woke
Belly Belly Nice 3:53 Dave Matthews Band
Mussiki é (Jungle Mix) 7:11 Miango
Mad World (feat. Safri Duo & Isam B) [Raaban Edit] 3:34 Michael Parsberg
Open Your Heart 5:46 M People
I Shall Be Free 6:13 Kid Beyond
Down To Earth 5:59 Peter Gabriel
Climb On (A Back That’s Strong) 4:16 Shawn Colvin
In Focus 4:49 Popcorn

Wednesday, Dec 9, 2015, 11am ~ Classic Thoracic

Coming Back To Life 6:19 Pink Floyd
Down To Earth 5:59 Peter Gabriel
Barely Breathing 4:15 Duncan Sheik
Unpack Your Heart 3:16 Phillip Phillips
Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) 3:42 Kelly Clarkson
One Billion Hands 4:05 Lourds Lane
Played A Live 6:46 Safri Duo
Lean On Me 4:18 Glee
Once a Day (feat. Sonna Rele) 3:58 Michael Franti & Spearhead
I Shall Be Free 6:13 Kid Beyond
Climb On (A Back That’s Strong) 4:16 Shawn Colvin
Gentle Voice 6:22 Michael Hewett

Thursday, Dec 10, 2015, 9am ~ Classic Thoracic

Coming Back To Life 6:19 Pink Floyd
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
Unpack Your Heart 3:16 Phillip Phillips
Corazon Espinado 4:38 Santana
One Billion Hands 4:05 Lourds Lane
Played A Live 6:46 Safri Duo
Ecstasy 5:02 Rusted Root
Groove Is In The Heart 3:52 Deee-Lite
Once a Day (feat. Sonna Rele) 3:58 Michael Franti & Spearhead
Climb On (A Back That’s Strong) 4:16 Shawn Colvin
Somehow Familiar 3:40 Fabrizio Paterlini

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT NIA?

For more information about Nia and this rich system of training and learning? Everything Nia is at http://www.nianow.com…
If you’re traveling or moving, you can find a teacher or classes wherever you’re going.

Interested in teaching or deepening your practice? Check out the Nia White Belt Training. They are offered all around the world so you can find one near you or where you may want to go!

generosity give arms wide open

“Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity.”
― Simone Weil

It takes courage to give generously ~ money, gifts, but mostly ourselves. Are you willing to share yourself? To offer the gifts that only you can give? How generous are you willing to be?

Here’s an exquisite version of Boots of Spanish Leather, a song we danced to this week. As only Bob Dylan can, it tells the story of giving gifts and the only gift we really want from another.

Below is the music from the week ~ but first some announce-y type things:

My friend Tonya Ridings is teaching Kundalini Yoga at acac! As taught by Yogi Bhajan, PhD, Kundalini Yoga is the yoga of awareness. It consists of a series of physical and breathing exercises, chanting, mantra and meditation. This ancient technology heals and builds from the inside out. This class is appropriate for beginners. Wednesdays 1:30-3 at ACAC Downtown. Join Tonya and become your best self!

• It’s St Patrick’s Day next week! Join me on Monday (1045am acac Albemarle Square) and Tuesday (9am acac Downtown) for Firedance: the energetic, joyful Riverdance routine! Be sure to be wearin’ your green, donchaknow?

Nia Jam Friday, March 20, 545-7pm, at acac Downtown Group Ex Studio ~ Magic
Join Kate Aust, Anne Wolf and Loring Myles for the debut of Magic, a new routine by Ann Christiansen. The intent of this body of work is to allow you to see and find grounding and grace in your dance: G (grounded), R (relaxed), A(alert/aware), C (centered), E (energized). Bring a guest for free!

Mindful Movement & Metta at Buck Mountain Episcopal Church Parish Hall (4133 Earlysville Road, Earlysville VA ~ GPS takes you to the church, keep going a little bit to the white building just past the church yard), Friday, March 27, 2015, 6-715pm. Experience the No Words routine ~ all instrumental music and is taught in silence ~ interwoven with the words of lovingkindness or metta meditation. Returning to the meditation throughout the routine can help keep the mind focused and the heart open. Absolutely no experience is needed in movement or meditation to participate. The event is free to all with a request for donations to the Buck Mountain Wellness Ministry (suggested $12).

dance. sit. write. April 18, 845am-4pm at Buck Mountain Episcopal Church Parish Hall in Earlysville. Spend a day exploring the interconnection of movement, meditation and creativity. No experience in any of the three practices is needed. We’ll provide what you need including incredible food from Rebecca George’s Dragonfly Kitchen. Find all the details here and email me for a registration form (sjmnia@gmail.com). I’ve been working on this for years. I would love to share it with you. EARLY BIRD PRICE of $60 if you register before March 21!

As always, please let me know if you have questions or how I can help more.

Dance on. Shine on.

Susan sig

Monday, Mar 9, 2015, 1045am ~ Generosity: Give Courageously

Wish You Were Here 6:12 Bliss
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
Don’t Say 5:47 Deep Dive Corp.
What Do You Say 5:00 Haley
Oye Como Va (Latin/Trance Mix) 4:17 Celia Cruz
Blood Stud (Ray Mang Remix) 8:36 MB Disco
U R The Answer 5:57 Stephen Bray/ Michael Beckwith
Give Love (Infinite Love Mix) 5:29 MC Yogi
Give A Little Bit 3:36 The Goo Goo Dolls
High 4:04 James Blunt
Shanti (Peace Out) 6:59 MC Yogi

Tuesday, Mar 10, 2015, 9am ~ Generosity: Give Courageously

Passing Through 5:17 Bob Holroyd
Moonsmith 5:50 Cantoma
The Sweetest Thing 4:28 JJ Grey & Mofro
Don’t Say 5:47 Deep Dive Corp.
Walk Into The Sun 5:21 Dirty Vegas
Take Me to the River 6:00 Talking Heads
The Brazilian 3:54 Dirty Vegas
Played A Live 6:46 Safri Duo
Give A Little Bit 3:36 The Goo Goo Dolls
Jets 4:35 Bonobo
Boots Of Spanish Leather 6:17 Martin Simpson

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015, 1055am ~ Generosity: Give Courageously

Éireann 5:10 Afro Celt Sound System
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
Qalanderi 6:55 Cheb I Sabbah
SexybackClean Version 4:03 Justin Timberlake
Coolsville 4:53 Rick Braun
Break The Chain 4:32 Tena Clark
One Billion Hands 4:05 Lourds Lane
Push It Up (feat. Kylie Auldist) 3:37 Cookin’ On 3 Burners
Never Coming Home 5:00 Sting
Everloving 3:26 Moby
Boots Of Spanish Leather 6:17 Martin Simpson

Thursday, Mar 12, 2015, 9am ~ Generosity: Give Courageously

The Rising 4:47 Bruce Springsteen
Back to the Earth 5:27 Rusted Root
Habibe 7:12 Big Blue Ball featuring Natacha Atlas, Hossam Ramzy, Neil Sparkes, The Hossam Ramzy Egyptian Ensemble (Adel Eskander, Wael Abu Bakr, Momtaz Talaat
Shadow 4:28 Big Blue Ball featuring Juan Cañizares, Papa Wemba
Exit Through You 5:52 Big Blue Ball featuring Joseph Arthur, Peter Gabriel, Karl Wallinger
Ghosts in My Machine 3:33 Annie Lennox
Sandstorm 7:26 Darude
Stairway To Heaven 8:03 Led Zeppelin
The Fire From Within 4:12 Tryptamoon
You’re the Ocean 3:49 Teitur
Horizon 4:00 Garth Stevenson

Saturday, Mar 14, 2015, 9am ~ Generosity: Give Courageously

Wish You Were Here 6:12 Bliss
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
The Sweetest Thing 4:28 JJ Grey & Mofro
Shadow 4:28 Big Blue Ball featuring Juan Cañizares, Papa Wemba
Break The Chain 4:32 Tena Clark
One Billion Hands 4:05 Lourds Lane
Sandstorm 7:26 Darude
Stairway To Heaven 8:03 Led Zeppelin
The Fire From Within 4:12 Tryptamoon
You’re the Ocean 3:49 Teitur
Because 2:22 Elliott Smith
Horizon 4:00 Garth Stevenson

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT NIA?

For more information about Nia and this rich system of training and learning? Everything Nia is at http://www.nianow.com…

If you’re traveling or moving, you can find a teacher or classes wherever you’re going.

Interested in teaching or deepening your practice? Check out the Nia White Belt Training. They are offered all around the world so you can find one near you or where you may want to go!

p6 Barefoot girlsWe welcomed in fall this week (thank the goodnesses ~ summer was a rough road) and with it the grounding, relaxing, powerful confidence that we can tap into with our feet and legs. We spent much of the week with the music of UK artist, Bob Holroyd who Nia movers have been dancing to for years. Holroyd travels extensively and his genius style blends the sounds of the world into evocative, beautiful, universal music. Even with no lyrics (in English, anyway), each piece carries its own emotional tone that translates into movement ~ particularly in the feet and legs.

We also had a super-fun, powerfully plugged-in, Autumn-welcoming Jam on Friday night. Thanks to Kayde and Kate for playing with me!

All the music from classes is below!

Dance on. Shine on.
Susan sig

P.S. FOCUS POCUS MUSIC GIVE AWAY (MORE WAYS TO SCORE GREAT NIA MUSIC!): The offer is still good that I made in the Principle 2: Natural Time Post: email me (sjmnia@gmail.com) a picture of yourself wearing the 13-Moon Calendar color of the day (or wear the color to class and TELL me that you did it intentionally and didn’t just HAPPEN to) and I’ll send you (or hand it to you if you’re in Cville) a CD of official Nia music, either Sanjana or Dreamwalker or the Official Playlist for the Unofficial Guide! Another way to play: comment below (or on the Focus Pocus Facebook Page) about how you used any of the principles in your life recently! I’m only announcing this here so only Focus Pocus readers are in on this! [And even though it sounds like a McDonald’s contest disclaimer: good in the US only (unless you want me to email you the tunes); limit one per person; while supplies last; void where prohibited.]

Monday, Sep 22, 2014, 1045am ~ The Unofficial Guide: The Base of the Body (especially feet)

Shake It Loose 3:33 Dolphin Boy
Stop For A Minute (feat. K’naan) 4:07 Keane
Fast Love 5:27 George Michael
Nostalgia Worship 6:46 Bassnectar
Domination 7:26 Peace Orchestra
Steppin Out 3:44 Kaskade
Fire to Me 4:36 Hyper/The Crystal Method
Amma 6:26 James Asher & Sivamani
Shining Path 7:23 Dreadzone
Porcelain 3:55 Moby
All Remains 7:30 Afro Celt Sound System

Tuesday, Sep 23, 2014, 9am ~ The Unofficial Guide: The Base of the Body (especially feet)

On The Forest Floor 5:05 Bob Holroyd
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
Duden 6:41 Natacha Atlas
Vision: O Euchari In Leta Via 6:08 Hildegard von Bingen
Blood Stud (Ray Mang Remix) 8:36 MB Disco
Reconfluenced 6:19 Bob Holroyd
Fun Does Not Exist 6:21 Natacha Atlas
Waking the Spirits (African Travels Re-Awakening Remix) 5:56 Bob Holroyd
Beautiful Domination 5:59 Bob Holroyd
27 Words 4:23 Bob Holroyd

Wednesday, Sep 24, 2014, 1055am ~ The Unofficial Guide: The Base of the Body (All Holroyd v. 1)

Sacred Light 4:56 Bob Holroyd
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
Journeyman – AO 6:41 Bob Holroyd
Drumming Up a Storm 5:59 Bob Holroyd
Reconfluenced 6:19 Bob Holroyd
African Drug [Original Tribal Mix] 6:02 Bob Holroyd
Neurotropa (feat. Latrama) [Bob Holroyd Remix] 4:44 Bob Holroyd
The Sheer Weight of Memory 5:28 Bob Holroyd
Autumn Leaves 4:05 Bob Holroyd
27 Words 4:23 Bob Holroyd

Thursday, Sep 25, 2014, 9am ~ The Unofficial Guide: The Base of the Body (All Holroyd v. 2)

Passing Through 5:17 Bob Holroyd
A Different Space 8:43 Bob Holroyd
Journeyman – AO 6:41 Bob Holroyd
Something Understood 4:24 Bob Holroyd
Drumming Up a Storm 5:59 Bob Holroyd
African Drug [Original Tribal Mix] 6:02 Bob Holroyd
Rafiki (Hi Life Mix) 6:04 Bob Holroyd 1
Adrift in Kerala 6:07 Bob Holroyd
The Sheer Weight of Memory 5:28 Bob Holroyd
Butterfly 4:30 Bob Holroyd
Approaching Silence 3:03 Bob Holroyd

Friday, Sep 26, 2014, 545pm ~ Fall Nia Jam with Kate and Kayde: The Base of the Body

From Russia With Love (Alaska Mix) 7:13 Matt Darey
Touched by God 7:16 Katcha
Soultrippin 7:46 Attila ( Featuring Zaida)
Blood Stud (Ray Mang Remix) 8:36 MB Disco
Reconfluenced 6:19 Bob Holroyd
U R The Answer 5:57 Stephen Bray/ Michael Beckwith
Culture 6:08 Ganga Girl
Gheisha 3:18 MBmusic
Beautiful World (Instrumental) 7:14 MRJ

RETREAT WITH NIA RICHMOND AT SEVENOAKS RETREAT CENTER IN MADISON Oct 10-12

Join Marybeth Grinnan, Niki Schemmel, and Susan Proffitt for another fun weekend at Sevenoaks. Play, create, get centered. Take some time for yourself before the demanding holiday season begins and return to your home energized and focused! Consider joining us for the optional Friday night activities which include dinner followed by Nia and a Fire Circle.

Get schedule and registration info here.

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT NIA?

For more information about Nia and this rich system of training and learning? Everything Nia is at http://www.nianow.com…

If you’re traveling or moving, you can find a teacher or classes wherever you’re going.

Interested in teaching or deepening your practice? Check out the Nia White Belt Training. They are offered all around the world so you can find one near you or where you may want to go!

0508201.jpgPrinciple 3: Music & The 8BC System invites us to listen from a state of RAW: Relaxed body, Alert mind and Waiting spirit. By listening from RAW, we can hear silence and sound and the details of music whether it is the sounds made by AfroCelt Sound System, Miles Davis, leaves moving in the trees, or children playing.

Below are the playlists from this week. Enjoy and listen deeply!

Dance on. Shine on.

Susan sig

P.S. FOCUS POCUS NATURAL TIME MUSIC GIVE AWAY: I’m extending the offer I made in the Principle 2: Natural Time Post: email me (sjmnia@gmail.com) a picture of yourself wearing the 13-Moon Calendar color of the day and I’ll send you (or hand it to you if you’re in Cville) a CD of Nia music, either Sanjana or Dreamwalker (both official Nia CDs) or the Unofficial Guide Playlist (which is decidedly NOT official)! I’m only announcing this here so only Focus Pocus readers are in on this! [And even though it sounds like a McDonald’s contest disclaimer: good in the US only (unless you want me to email you the tunes); limit one per person; while supplies last; void where prohibited.]

Monday, Sep 1, 2014, 1045am ~ The Unofficial Guide: Music & the 8BC System

Qurna 7:09 Banco de Gaia
Habibe 7:12 Big Blue Ball featuring Natacha Atlas, Hossam Ramzy, Neil Sparkes, The Hossam Ramzy Egyptian Ensemble (Adel Eskander, Wael Abu Bakr, Momtaz Talaat
Praise You 5:22 Fatboy Slim
Right Here Right Now 5:57 Fatboy Slim
Samb Adagio 5:58 Safri Duo
I’ve Got The Music In Me 5:02 The Kiki Dee Band
Daphne 7:03 Eddi Reader/Mahotella Queens/Revetti Sakalar
Persistence of Memory 4:29 Afro Celt Sound System
Warm Sound 5:31 Zero 7
Devorzhum 6:13 Dead Can Dance

Tuesday, Sep 2, 2014, 9am ~ The Unofficial Guide: Music & the 8BC System

Ho Hey 2:43 The Lumineers
Dance of Sarasvati 9:07 Kitaro
Back to the Earth 5:27 Rusted Root
After the Rain Has Fallen 5:03 Sting
Right Here Right Now 5:57 Fatboy Slim
Breathe (Extreme Mix) 4:04 Soulfood
I’ve Got The Music In Me 5:02 The Kiki Dee Band
Send Me on My Way 4:23 Rusted Root
Daphne 7:03 Eddi Reader/Mahotella Queens/Revetti Sakalar
What Do You Take Me For 4:35 The Brand New Heavies
Coming Down 7:47 Rasiya

Wednesday, Sep 3, 2014, 1055am ~ The Unofficial Guide: Music & the 8BC System

Sacred Light 4:56 Bob Holroyd
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
Don’t Say 5:47 Deep Dive Corp.
Blood Stud (Ray Mang Remix) 8:36 MB Disco
Reconfluenced 6:19 Bob Holroyd
U R The Answer 5:57 Stephen Bray/ Michael Beckwith
Everyone Deserves Music 4:37 Michael Franti & Spearhead
Everloving 3:26 Moby
Music 4:04 Leela James
27 Words 4:23 Bob Holroyd

Thursday, Sep 4, 2014, 9am ~ The Unofficial Guide: The Nine Movement Forms

The Rising 4:47 Bruce Springsteen
Pavement Cracks 5:10 Annie Lennox
Ma’ Africa 4:49 Mahotella Queens/Ulali
Colossus 6:44 Afro Celt Sound System
Shadowman 6:36 Afro Celt Sound System
Black Horse And The Cherry Tree 2:51 KT Tunstall
Ecstasy 5:02 Rusted Root
Baila Morena 4:10 Zucchero & Maná
I Shall Be Free 6:13 Kid Beyond
Music 4:04 Leela James
Under African Skies 3:37 Paul Simon
Make You Feel My Love 3:34 Adele
27 Words 4:23 Bob Holroyd

NIA JAM at ACAC DOWNTOWN – Open to Everybody ~ Members and Non-members

Friday, September 26, 2014, 545-7pm, ACAC Downtown Group Exercise Studio
Susan, Kate and Kayde welcome fall with a grounding and energizing Jam that interweave three powerful Nia routines: Feeling, U, and Passion! All are welcome, please join us!

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT NIA?

For more information about Nia and this rich system of training and learning? Everything Nia is at http://www.nianow.com…

If you’re traveling or moving, you can find a teacher or classes wherever you’re going.

Interested in teaching or deepening your practice? Check out the Nia White Belt Training. They are offered all around the world so you can find one near you or where you may want to go!

secret to youth egret taking offWe’re onto something, friends: the expansion of range of motion in all realms increases youthfulness. Play with increasing range of motion in the body, in the mind, in the emotions…but I don’t suggest this lightly. It takes courage to stretch beyond the familiar mushy middle. It can feel awkward, scary, and even painful to find the strength to stretch past what we usually do. The problem is that the longer we spend in the mushy middle, the smaller that middle becomes. Do your best to be fearless but not reckless as you discover the (ever changing) sweet balance between challenge and healing.

Spirits soar when we make the courageous leap of expanding our range of motion.

I’d love to hear about where this takes you.

A couple of things…

If you’re interested in some continuing education, I am enjoying many of the talks in the series called The Neuroscience of Change created by Coaches Rising. In particular, I have enjoyed the talks by Amanda Blake, Lisa Wimberger, and Dan Siegel. All the talks are free and you can find them here. You don’t have to be a coach or know a single thing about neuroscience to learn from them (and you might notice, being the observant reader you are, that they illustrate many of the scientific underpinnings of the practice of Nia!).

And for those of you keeping track at home, I’m switching classes with Anne next week: she will teach my Monday, Aug 18 1045am class and I will teach both her 9am class on Friday, Aug 22 and Saturday, Aug 23. Come dance with us both!

Below is the music of the week of The Secret to Youth. EnJOY

Dance on. Shine on.

Susan sig

Monday, Aug 11, 2014, 1045am ~ The Secret to Youth (psst, it’s Range of Motion)

Passing Through 5:17 Bob Holroyd
A Different Space 8:43 Bob Holroyd
Moonsmith 5:50 Cantoma
May all Beings 6:27 EarthRise SoundSystem
Drumming Up a Storm 5:59 Bob Holroyd
African Drug [Original Tribal Mix] 6:02 Bob Holroyd
Samb Adagio 5:58 Safri Duo
Khalgi Stomp (Thievery Corporation Mix) 3:55 Transglobal Underground
The Sheer Weight of Memory 5:28 Bob Holroyd
Dark Waters 4:35 Bob Holroyd
Lavender Hill 4:33 Lex van Someren

Tuesday, Aug 12, 2014, 9am ~ The Secret to Youth (psst, it’s Range of Motion)

The Day After Everything Changed 4:30 Ellis Paul
Center Of The Sun 5:01 Conjure One Feat. Poe
Tears From The Moon 4:18 Conjure One Feat. Sinéad O’ Connor
May all Beings 6:27 EarthRise SoundSystem
Walk Into The Sun 5:21 Dirty Vegas
Take Me to the River 6:00 Talking Heads
The Brazilian 3:54 Dirty Vegas
Played A Live 6:46 Safri Duo
Give A Little Bit 3:36 The Goo Goo Dolls
Hallelujah (feat. Charlie Sexton) 4:16 Justin Timberlake & Matt Morris
Claire De Lune 4:53 Richard Clayderman

Wednesday, Aug 13, 2014, 1055am ~ The Secret to Youth (psst, it’s Range of Motion)

Éireann 5:10 Afro Celt Sound System
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
Journeyman – AO 6:41 Bob Holroyd
Just the Way You Are 3:41 Bruno Mars
Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) 3:42 Kelly Clarkson
Break The Chain 4:32 Tena Clark
One Billion Hands 4:05 Lourds Lane
Jump Jive An’ Wail 2:56 Brian Setzer Orch
Never Coming Home 5:00 Sting
Salala (featuring Peter Gabriel) 3:24 Angelique Kidjo
High 4:04 James Blunt
First Impressions 4:08 Yo Yo Ma, Mark O’Connor, Edgar Meyer

Thursday, Aug 14, 2014, 9am ~ The Secret to Youth (psst, it’s Range of Motion)

Éireann 5:10 Afro Celt Sound System
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
Journeyman – AO 6:41 Bob Holroyd
Just the Way You Are 3:41 Bruno Mars
Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) 3:42 Kelly Clarkson
One Billion Hands 4:05 Lourds Lane
Born This Way 4:20 Lady Gaga
Life During Wartime 4:54 Talking Heads
Yahoo 7:33 Veeresh & The Humaniversity Sound
Sunshine 3:25 Schuyler Fisk
High 4:04 James Blunt
Bach: Cello Suite #4 In E Flat, BWV 1010 – 1. Sarabande 5:03 Yo-Yo Ma

WHITE BELT TRAINING IN RICHMOND SEPTEMBER 13

Nia Trainer, Stephanie Robinson-Abilon is leading a White Belt training in Richmond, Virginia. Check out the details here.

NIA TRAINER, JULIE WYLIE, COMING TO CHARLOTTESVILLE

We’re excited to support a weekend of classes and workshops with Nia Trainer, Julie Wylie now scheduled for September and a Nia White Belt early in 2015. Events will include lots of things for everyBODY as well as for belts wanting to reconnect to the principles and practices. More info coming soon.

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT NIA?

For more information about Nia and this rich system of training and learning? Everything Nia is at http://www.nianow.com…

If you’re traveling or moving, you can find a teacher or classes wherever you’re going.

Interested in teaching or deepening your practice? Check out the Nia White Belt Training. There are trainings planned in Richmond and Charlottesville (see above) and lots of other places, too.

breathing along bones sally taylorA week replete with birthdays and breathing, and drawing in and letting go, and some damn fine music, I must say.

I loved the discovery of Sally Taylor, daughter of James Taylor and Carly Simon, and her delicious song Give Me Strength (thanks again to Kira for pointing the way). Perfect for this week.

To Janice and Art and Deb and Diana and Shakespeare and Pat (and Pam on Saturday), I’m so glad you were born and our dancing paths have crossed. To everybody else, hell, I’m glad you were all born, too, and aren’t we lucky to get to do this together?

Why yes, yes we are.

EnJOY it all, everybody.

Dance on. Shine on.

Susan sig

P.S. I am happy to say that an adapted Focus Pocus post has just been published on Elephant Journal.  Click here to go to it.  If you enjoy it, please pass on the love.

Monday, April 21, 2014, 1045am ~ Breathing Along the Bones

The Rising 4:47 Bruce Springsteen
A Different Space 8:43 Bob Holroyd
Free Your Mind 4:52 En Vogue
Succumb to Me 5:15 Terence Trent D’Arby
What Do You Say 5:00 Haley
Mafich Aravi 8:03 Banco de Gaia
Freek 7:16 Shakatura
Diavolo In Me (Devil In Me) 4:05 Zucchero & Solomon Burke
Sweet Child o’ Mine (Rick Rubin…) 3:56 Sheryl Crow
Give Me Strength 4:03 Sally Taylor
Halving The Compass 5:27 Helios

Tuesday, April 22, 2014, 9am ~ Breathing Along the Bones

Big Sky 4:04 Annie Lennox
Down To Earth 5:59 Peter Gabriel
The Fire From Within 4:12 Tryptamoon
Water Down the Ganges 7:10 Prem Joshua & Manish Vyas
Freedom 2:50 Tyrone Wells
Nothing But The Water (II) 5:19 Grace Potter & The Nocturnals
I’m Alive (Life Sounds Like) 3:52 Michael Franti
Knock On Wood 4:13 Safri Duo
Amma 6:26 James Asher & Sivamani
Dust in the Wind 3:30 Daughter Darling
Feel It All – Band Jam 3:50 KT Tunstall
Give Me Strength 4:03 Sally Taylor
Jai Radha Madhav 6:27 Deva Premal

Weds, April 23, 2014, 1055am ~ Breathing Along the Bones

Sacred Light 4:56 Bob Holroyd
Rafiki (Sidewalk Mix) 6:25 Bob Holroyd
Palais Mascotte 5:47 Patrick Duvoisin
No Quiero Nada Mas 4:46 Sancti Spiritus
Keep On Searching 5:08 Kraak & Smaak
Dance Floor (Nu Brazilia Remix) 5:28 The Tao Of Groove
U R The Answer 5:57 Stephen Bray/ Michael Beckwith
Played A Live 6:46 Safri Duo
Sunsethighway 4:00 Kiln
Lydia 5:58 Tim Story

Thursday, April 24, 2014, 9am ~ Breathing Along the Bones

Primavera 6:21 Santana
Africa Bamba 4:43 Santana
Smooth 5:00 Santana
What Do You Say 5:00 Haley
Oye Como Va (Latin/Trance Mix) 4:17 Celia Cruz
SexybackClean Version 4:03 Justin Timberlake
Coolsville 4:53 Rick Braun
After Midnight 3:09 Eric Clapton
Fly 3:33 Bart Hafeman
The Hearts A Lonely Hunter 6:22 Thievery Corporation
I Hope You Dance 4:58 Lee Ann Womack
Heavenly Day 3:45 Patty Griffin
Halving The Compass 5:27 Helios

TWO SPECIAL NIA EVENTS AT ACAC MIDLOTHIAN (remember: if you’re a member in Cville, you’re a member there)

Join Britta von Tagen, international Nia teacher and Nia trainer, for a Heart of Nia Playshop. This playshop will help you tap into your own deep and personal connection to Nia by developing your sensitivity as a Sacred Athlete.
Sunday, May 25, Midlothian ACAC 12-3p.m.
$35 ACAC member pre-pay ($45 at the door, space permitting)
$45 Non-member pre-pay ($55 at the door, space permitting)

Jason Alan Griffin, First Degree Black Belt, is stopping in Richmond for his cross country Nia tour. This is a one of a kind opportunity to experience Jason’s style of Nia as we sweat to some remixed James Bond theme songs and other classic Shirley Bassey tunes.
Monday, May 26 at the Midlothian ACAC. 8:15 a.m.
The class is FREE for ACAC members and $12 for non-members.

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT NIA?

For more information about Nia and this rich system of training and learning? Everything Nia is at http://www.nianow.com…

If you’re traveling or moving, you can find a teacher or classes wherever you’re going. 

Interested in teaching or deepening your practice? Check out the Nia White Belt Training. There is one coming up in Richmond the week of May 17 and lots of other places, too.

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