Happy Easter Nia Classes ~ "Rising"

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As a Christian, Easter time, is a big deal for me, it’s a time to celebrate the resurrection of Christ. Also, as a Nia teacher, (and a Christian!) I want to honor the uniqueness of everyone in class and be accepting of all religions, beliefs and faiths.

Coming into class with "let's all celebrate Jesus!" simply is not going to work. I feel the creative tension between my personal faith and professional responsibility then jump up and down as I find a fabulous solution; A playlist compiled with songs to do with Rising with a focus around the concept "Rising".

In life many things are beyond our control, yet what is within our control is how we choose to respond, and the highest choice is often to rise above the circumstances on a quest to find light, truth and love….

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This Nia Experience “Rising” is adapted from the classic Nia routine "Mantra", originally designed by Carlos Aya Rosas.

Focus: The Belly (+Muscles and Cells) exploring how movement, the body’s way, is a mantra and metaphor for self, community, life.

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(Science) The belly, as a substance, has 3 different qualities:

  • strength (resilience)

  • elasticity (ability to bounce back)

  • fluidity (go with the flow)

    (Craft)

  1. Sense how the belly contracts and expands

  2. Observe how the belly of each of your 700 muscles do the same, now

  3. Imagine all 70+ trillion cells also opening and closing

Notice how the belly, the muscles and the cells all do the same mantra of movement. They move in/out, expand/contract and always seek balance.

(Art)

  • As we sense the belly of the body, play with calling it the “Moma Cell”

  • We can go inward (Body, Belly, Muscles, Connective Tissue, Cell)

  • We can go outwards (Body, Self, Others, Class, Community, Global)

Intent: From inward + outward awareness we develop a sense of inter-connection "we are one". The Mantra, the movement, our lives and community continues.

This is a time for celebration. An invitation to be inspired to rise up above anything that draws us down.

  • We are strong

  • We bounce back

  • We go with the flow

You're invited to come celebrate and join in the dance.

Thursday, 7:30 - 8:30pm The Yoga Room, Conroe

Friday, 10:00 - 11:00am Soma Ranch

Sunday, 5:00 - 6:00pm Soma Ranch

Freedom in your Ribs

Here’s a lovely 2 min clip from MaryBeth Davison Smith about how to "spring" from our ribs. Whether we are taking a Nia class, doing our yoga practice or going for a run, MaryBeth's talk is a great reminder of how key our ribs are;

If you're in the Houston area this coming Saturdays, consider attending this fab workshop at Angela Mestre 's Studio NiaMoves.

We hope to host MaryBeth at Soma Ranch some time in the fall for a workshop and possibly a retreat. Be sure to email info@somaranch.com if you’d like to be the first to receive more information about Feldenkrais opportunities at Soma Ranch.

Hot tip: Suggested class or “dancing through life” focus: A delicious visual for ribs is as the expandable bird cage that provides protection AND mobility for our lungs and heart.

Great allergy relief

Thank you Sue Korthauer for 1-2-3!

(1) coming to dance (2) sharing about a magical affordable way to help allergies and (3) starting to share your permanent makeup talents so close to Soma Ranch

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Here’s what Sue shared:

think I found “liquid gold”. One of the gals at the Salon said there was buzz on their newsfeed about this miracle relief for allergies. HEB couldn’t keep it on their shelves. I bought 2 bottles—(one for her)

Used as directed and this morning..no snot-filled sinuses, no general body inflammation—and no morning headache. $21/bottle...hoping you get the same results!!

Sue Korthauer, permanent makeup, p~ink

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Good bye Little Mo

With 8 rescued donkeys, here at Soma Ranch, whenever someone shares they have a need for a donkey, we are glad to give them one. Even though it’s a bittersweet moment, we recognize how every goodbye is a new beginning.

Little Mo has a lovely new home with Jody T Morse (a long time friend). Jody took her Nia white belt training with Helen 20 years ago!

Part of Little Mo’s new purpose in the “Morse Family” tribe is to keep their donkey company when the horses are taken out for a ride.

Donkeys are very social and lovable, they can become sad and even depressed when left alone.

Out of all our donkeys Little Mo has been the most fun to play and fool with. For example he would accompany me for walks around the pasture without a lead or halter, i.e. he’d simply walk side by side, pausing and waiting when ever I stopped.

From noticing this we developed a very fun little trick, where Little Mo learned to count and do “steps and stances”. I’d stand side by side and walk a certain number of steps, counting out loud as I went along, then, when I stopped (stance) Little Mo would take the same number of steps, catch me up, and then stop (Stance), waiting for the next number/steps.

10 years ago I would never have dreamed I’d be rescuing, fooling with and giving away donkeys. Another example of how we often can’t even dream up the big picture waiting for us, however with faith and f, prayer and persistence, amazing things can happen.

This story is wrapped with friendship, trust, joy, letting go, new beginnings and of course DONKEYS!!




Healing Writer's NEST Retreat

Wow! what an amazing, healing experience the Writer’s NEST retreat was for all who attended, including myself! We had 8 registered on the retreat then life happened and, like a pack a cards, commitments tumbled and 4 guests cancelled late notice! We could choose to cancel, however at Soma Ranch, Joe and I recognize folks have booked their flights, arranged their life and are looking forward to the retreat, whenever possible we “keep calm and carry on”. As usual, I’m glad we did ;-

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Patricia came from Canada, she’s a published author, specializing in children and young adult fiction. On the day I’d had a conversation after class with a participant who was keen for us to offer a retreat for writers, Patricia had connected via email and made the comment “Oh I’d come to Soma Ranch for a writer’s retreat!” and the rest is history ;-)

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Jane came from Colorado, she’s a published author, specializing in poetry and appears to have an abundant library of works both in her brain and on her phone. What ever the topic Jane would pop up with “oh I have a poem about that” and we would all delight in her sharing.

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Kathy came from Plano, north of Dallas, Texas. She’s a most accomplished horse teacher, coach and judge and is in the process of writing her first book. Jane presented a “BETA test” of her intro workshop “All the Ride Moves” which combines her knowledge and personalized system for riding with the wisdom and philosophy of Nia Technique.

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Darlene, recently relocated to Montgomery, Texas. She entered with the intent of continuing to develop her memoir book. Through the collaborative process of the retreat, Darlene tweaked her direction into writing a self help book that shares the wisdom of both her personal experience, and vast experience in psychotherapy, to provide a captivating, practical, step by step approach to help individuals and professionals.

We delighted in sharing meals together around the round table. Each guest seemed to find their favorite “pockets” of space to retreat to for their writing. We enjoyed Texas weather at it’s best with mini field trips each afternoon. The first field trip was to the Sam Houston National Forrest (within 10 minutes from Soma Ranch), our hike included a gentle stroll with some grand trees to navigate over, and take advantage of the photo op!. The following afternoon we sent out boating on Lake Conroe which helped invoke memories, creativity and even help one guest conquer a fear in a most healing way. One evening Kathy shared her “All the Ride Moves” intro talk which was both entertaining and educational.

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Enjoying the super moon with hot tub, open fire, s’mores, poetry and great conversations was a highlight. I used one of my favorite books “The Power of Kindness” for personal inspiration and to included in the meditation parts of class, it helped spur some conversations about what it means to be present, included a fabulous exploration around how presence is to be present, which is a gift, for ourselves and those around us.

Joe’s food nourished us though out the week with food that was delicious to all 5 senses, I love his phrase “people eat with their eyes” and how Joe focuses on creating “Food as Art” to satisfy and delight.

With yet another day of perfect sunshine and warmth we took a stroll around the local White Eagle retreat center, including time for a contemplative walk through the labyrinth. Kathy and Jane had a wonderful time brushing the winter coats off our horses, who happily then pranced their dashing selves! From the most to the least experienced with horses I’m always touched to witness the power of healing through “fooling” with horses.

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Hànanda (our resident Soma assistance and Nia teacher), who joined us for some meals and field trip, was witnessed doing some extensive clearing on our fence line. Jane created a poem called “Hananda of the Brambles” which was touching, amusing and most perfect for recognizing the wonderful contribution "Hananda is bringing to Soma.

Each afternoon we gathered for our “NEST” circle. This was a collaborative conversation on the couches in the studio building. These special times provided the opportunity for each person to share some of what they’d written. The conversation provided space for us to weave in our personal experience, recommendations and support, like an exquisite nest! it was a beautiful dance full of support, joy and insight.

Our last day brought beautiful closure. Sharing our appreciation, admiration and love for each member of this very special experience, we giggled over avocado toast, worshiped together at Cowboy church, praised and danced with Lauren Daigle and snapped some fabulous “last” group photos.

Several fabulous ideas have been ignited for future events including:

  • 2020 Writer’s NEST Retreat

  • “The Body’s Way” with “The Writer’s Way” - retreat or workshop co-lead by Helen and Jane

  • “All the Right Moves” - retreat or workshop co-lead by Helen and Kathy

  • The Canadian Migration Retreat - how lovely to host our fellow Nia friends in cold climate to enjoy a Sunshine retreat at Soma! :-)

14 Day Nia Wellness Program

Are you, or do you know somebody, who’s living with a long or short term challenge, looking for self-healing and to feel better?

Do you desire to add a little more to your Nia practice and classes? Perhaps at home or in an area where there isn’t an abundance of classes at times you’d like?

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Beginning tomorrow, March 29, NiaTV is offering a FREE 14 Day Wellness Program!

This is an online experience geared towards self-healing and feeling better when living with a long or short term challenge.

Participants will have access to 14 customized fitness videos, a 14-Day Wellness Journal, guided daily challenges, wellness pointers and peer support from a global community when they sign into Nia Technique's streaming platform, NiaTV.

Create your free account at www.niatv.fit

Nia FreeDance Testimonials

Testimonials from teachers and students who have taken the Nia FreeDance training:

Amy Jogodnik Warshawsky, Nia Black Belt from Hoboken, New Jersey.

"As soon as I met Joanie and Adelle, I knew I had to bring them to Israel. Their warm, energetic and open way of being would be perfect for our community. And, then, while experiencing the Nia FreeDance Training, I was overcome with the feeling that the Israel Nia community would all love what Nia FreeDance has to offer the Conscious Dance community. Nia FreeDance deepened my relationship with form and freedom, opened possibility for more creative authentic movement and heightened my ability to play with music. And, most of all, the training was deeply bonding and crazy fun!"

Robbie Plumb, Nia Brown Belt Teacher from Lenexa, Kansas: “Nia FreeDance training opened up a whole new doorway of expression in the way I move, think, emote, and share my unique spirit with the world around me. Nia FreeDance gave me the tools to find my voice and the resonant creative power within me.

Nia FreeDance was a beautiful blend of body centered freedom, emotional expression, cognitive creativity, and spirited liberation! “

Sandy-Ananda Ramon Jenet, Nia Black Belt Teacher from Germany:

“I loved the training for its rich dive into music and realms. I hear and sense music in a different way through my chakras...Sonic Landscape. I left with a greater understanding of experiencing freedance stages in my own personal practice. I now have tools to share this experience with others so they can dive into their creative music and movement journey. Additionally, an incredible tool for application in learning new routines and revisiting previously learned routines.”

Sara Earl, Nia Brown Belt Teacher originally from Austin and now lives in Pennsylvania: “What I love about Nia FreeDance is that, as a long-time ecstatic dancer I always felt obligated to have a spiritual experience. But in Nia FD, embodiment is the foundation and the experience is crafted to be multi-dimensional. It allows for more freedom and richness and it just makes so much more sense to me. In FD I find the perfect opportunity to be creative and yet also practice all the form and principles of Nia.”

Terry Pozza, Nia Brown Belt Teacher from San Antonio, TX “During the Nia FreeDance training I discovered the movement of contracting and releasing throughout the 4 realms (body, emotions, mind, and spirit) gave me the opportunity to work with and release what I no longer needed, and to receive what I craved – all in my body’s way and my body’s time. I began the Nia FreeDance training after a very stressful week and was amazed that by the close of the weekend, my body, emotions, mind and spirit were completely sated. I felt centered and empowered and ready to face whatever presented itself as I stepped out from the dance floor.

Participating in the Nia FreeDance training has given me greater opportunities to take Nia’s healing power to a larger audience. It is true that, “through movement we find health.” I have been able to take this beautiful practice into my Spiritual Direction work and I will be facilitating some Nia FreeDance sessions at an upcoming retreat for women wishing to more deeply embody their spirituality.

Facilitating a Nia FreeDance class is a complete blast!”

A letter to Debbie Rosas from Elaine Shipman, Nia student in San Antonio: “Hi Debbie. This past weekend I attended the Nia FreeDance training with Adelle and Joanie in San Antonio. It was an amazing experience that not only enhanced my Nia FreeDance practice but gave me a new appreciation for the amount of thought, preparation, and work that goes into a Nia FreeDance class. Although I am a future Nia white belt, Joanie and Adelle made me feel very comfortable throughout the training and I was able to gain a deeper understanding of how and why Nia FreeDance works so well for me.

Debbie, I would also like to thank you for creating this beautiful movement form. Nia (both classical and Nia FreeDance) has been the catalyst for major change in my life. I am so grateful for this practice and I cannot imagine ever being without it.”

Todd Morgan, Nia Whiten Belt from San Antonio, TX: “I am fairly new to Nia, and have had issues with learning choreography since I started. I took the Nia Freedance experience a number of months ago, and it was amazing. I found out that most choreography is created from Freedance. I also became privy to some important ideas and reasoning behind Nia Freedance that really set me free. A very cool thing is that the freedom in Nia FreeDance also helped me to get into my body to learn choreography. It is not about learning how to FreeDance. That is my dance. It is about how the experience affected me both somatically, as well as emotionally. I have also taken the Nia White Belt, which was amazing as well. I really feel like the Nia FreeDance experience moved me more experientially. I love Nia FreeDance. It has changed my relationship with Classic Nia, plus Adelle and Joanie are magic!!!!!!!”

Early Birds for Men of Nia Retreat

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Sign up & save!

Early Bird Rates continue through midnight this Sunday for Men of Nia retreat at Soma Ranch (April 26 - 28)

Folks have the misconception this retreat is for men only. Truth is the Men of Nia Retreat is welcoming of everyone, and we celebrate Men of Nia with 4 key World Class Male Presenters (Mark, JAG, Ray and Alan)

Early Bird rates are extended through midnight Sunday for Men of Nia retreat. Folks have the misconception this retreat is for men only. Truth is the Men of Nia Retreat is welcoming of everyone, and we celebrate Men of Nia with 4 key World Class Male Presenters (Mark, JAG, Ray and Alan)

Men of Nia Retreat
from 25.00
Price:
Quantity:
Book Now

Big thanks to Nia second degree black belt instructor, Fred Bass, who created and introduces a fabulous video series of interviews with "Men who do Nia"! Here’s his introduction:

Fred has wonderfully captured the essence of some of the fabulous Men who do Nia

click HERE for more clips from the series.

AND check out more information on the Men of Nia retreat, we’d love you to join us.

Author Patricia Atchison recommends Soma Ranch

Thank you Patricia for your lovely review of the recent Writer’s NEST retreat at Soma Ranch, we’re delighted to hear we exceeded all your expectations :-)


I recently attended a "Writers Nest Retreat" at Soma Ranch. Thank you Helen Terry! The Writer’s Nest Retreat exceeded all my expectations. Soma Ranch is a real Texan gem; inviting, relaxing, and heartwarming. I’m grateful to have had such a fabulous ‘Nest’ experience with fellow authors enabling us all to share writing information, stories, Nia dance, yoga, great conversation and getting to know the locale of Montgomery better. Helen, you and (Husband) Joe are lovely hosts! The accommodations are comfortable, the meals fantastic, and my every need was met with a smile! Thank you so much!

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Patricia Atchison

Email: patricia@patriciaatchison.ca

Websites:  www.patriciaatchison.ca   www.patriciaatchisonauthor.com

Facebook Author’s page: www.facebook.com/PatriciaLAtchison


Curious to know more? Here’s information about Wrtier’s NEST 2020 Retreat

Praying up, Dreaming on...

Thank you Lorri Donnahoe for sharing this touching article about Lauren Daigle.

Wow! what an inspiration. Click HERE to read the full article from GuidePosts. The last paragraph struck a chord in me....:

"it is not the acclaim or the success that makes those two years of being really sick worth it. That’s not how it works. Success can disappear as quickly as it comes, and suffering is a part of life. What was true about those days I spent lying in that patch of sunlight in the loft is that God made himself known to me and in that knowing I found myself."

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I'm still praying and dreaming I get to meet Lauren. How great it will be to share all the wonderful dancing we do with her music.

I sense and dream something BIG happens when we connect, the result being changing the lives of many for the better :-)

praying up and dreaming on ;-)


Letter from Nia FreeDance Leaders

Dear Dancing Friends,

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We’d like to personally invite you to one of our Nia FreeDance Trainings. We thought you’d like to know more about the two days so here goes:

Nia FreeDance, Art of Conscious Dance, is the ultimate conscious dance experience that celebrates and brings people closer to the source of their authentic dance, where body, emotions, mind and spirit unite, creating an artful movement experience. This unique class unlocks people's creativity, giving them a sensation of aliveness and freedom where they are the master artist of their body and life.

Nia FreeDance training is for everyBody. This means Nia teachers, Nia belts, Nia students, and students of all movement modalities. In addition, it is a wonderful 2 day creative experience for writers, actors, artists...everyone! The training is 2 days of deep and rich exploration into movement creativity, music, voice, and leadership.

Day 1 of the training, we dive deep into the experience and the sensation of Nia FreeDance. This includes somatic (body based) exercises that explore:

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• Our body’s natural way of creating change through movement.

• FreeDance WB principle 1 as a foundation and part of the

history of Nia FreeDance.

• Architecture of the class, and how each part of the class

unleashes movement creativity via body, emotions, mind and spirit.

• Magic of Music, and how to sense the stimulation of the music

in our body, the key inspiration for movement creativity.

Day 2 of the training, we continue the Nia FreeDance experience, adding tools and somatic exercises to embody the knowledge to teach a Nia FreeDance class. This includes:

• Voice, as an instrument to motivate, calm and stimulate change

and creativity.

• Nia DJ leadership skills.

• Class environment.

• Break down and practice of the Nia FreeDance class

architecture.

• Nia FreeDance class practice.

• Music sources and playlist.

Each day there is a Nia FreeDance class led by the trainers.

Additional thoughts from Adelle and Joanie... with this training, we have experienced:

• The tools and experiences provided in this training are for

everybody, and can be used to enhance their life and work.

• Nia teachers receive the tools and guidance to not only teach a Nia FreeDance class *immediately after the training*, but also enhances movement creativity and leadership in their current classic Nia classes.

• EveryBody who takes the training gains a deeper appreciation

of, and love for, their unique dance. The power of Nia FreeDance has them connecting to their inner artist, opening new pathways for creativity in their daily life.

• The training motivates and inspires Nia Belts who are not teaching to step into being a Nia teacher. There is a sensation of YES, "I can do this!!"

• Students are inspired to move more freely in class and in their

lives. They are more excited about Nia, as well as being open to the potential of taking a Nia White Belt.

You can teach immediately following the training if you are a licensed Nia teacher member.

Currently there is no apprenticeship program. Instead there is a FUN 8 week teaching guide developed by your trainers to help you integrate Nia FreeDance within your classic Nia class and prepare you to guide a Nia FreeDance class.

See YOU on the dance floor! With love, Adelle and Joanie

All the Ride Moves

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We are blessed with Kathy Davidson (equestrian specialist and soon to be author) attending our Writer’s NEST retreat this week.

Kathy’s an extremely accomplished and most delightful equestrian teacher, coach and judge.

She’s developing a fabulous intro session “All the Ride Moves” a mindful movement workshop based on the principals of Nia.

Tomorrow (Friday evening) Kathy will provide a debut, and You are invited!

She is generously offering the experience complimentary (considering it her “beta test”).

Designed primarily for the Equestrian Athlete, this hour long session has beneficial information for the health and daily living of people from all walks of life.

We will not be riding horses, but we will be simulating the movements and rhythms used when riding with the help of music!

The Walk is four beats, the Trot is two beats, and the Canter is a three beat Waltz!

Some of the work is done standing, but much of of the session is done sitting in a chair just like being in a saddle!

All feedback is welcome. Please come!

Kathy Davidson “All the Ride Moves” Debut at Soma Ranch, Friday, March 22, 7:30 - 8:30pm

Kathy Davidson “All the Ride Moves” Debut at Soma Ranch, Friday, March 22, 7:30 - 8:30pm

Fabulous experience for house riders, Nia lovers and beneficial for the health and daily living of people from all walks of life!

Fabulous experience for house riders, Nia lovers and beneficial for the health and daily living of people from all walks of life!

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Kathy Davidson

Here Kathy is, writing her book in her favorite spot, at the Soma Ranch Writer’ NEST Retreat.

Writer's NEST Retreat Schedule

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Submerse yourself in a relaxing retreat experience at Soma Ranch. Choose to:

  1. drop in for a class (7:00am, 10:00am, 11:00am, 5:00pm, 7:30pm) Regular class rates apply to all classes.

  2. enjoy a Day Retreat NEST experience 7:00am - 8:15pm (you choose when to arrive and when to leave, full day attendance not required!) 24 hours notice required for Day Retreat bookings.

  3. submerse in the Full 6 day Retreat experience (Tuesday 3pm - Sunday 2pm)

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Tuesday March 19

01:00 - 03:00 Arrivals

03:00 - 04:00 Afternoon Gathering Circle

04:00 - 05:00 Free Time (let the writing flow!)

05:00 - 06:00 Nia Class

06:15 - 07:00 Dinner

07:30 - 08:15 Sunset Ceremony & Class

 
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Sunrise to Sunset:

Wednesday, March 20

Thursday, March 21

Friday, March 22

Saturday, March 23

 
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07:00 - 07:30 Sunrise Yoga/Meditation
07:30 - 08:15 Q time (let the writing flow!)

08.15 - 08:45 Breakfast

08:45 - 09:45 Q time (let the writing flow!)

10:00 - 11:00 Nia Class

11:00 - 11:30 Nia 5 Stages + Meditation

11:30 - 12:15 Q time (let the writing flow!)

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12:15 - 1:00 Lunch (choose silent or social)

01:00 - 03:00 Field Trips (Boating, Labyrinth, National Forest) or Free Time (let it flow!)

03:00 - 04:00 Afternoon Gathering Circle “support, listen, share thoughts and progress”

04:00 - 05:00 Free Time (let the writing flow!)

05:00 - 06:00 Nia Class

06:15 - 07:00 Dinner (choose silent or social)

07:30 - 08:15 Sunset Ceremony or Class

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Sunday, March 24

07:00 - 07:30 Sunrise Yoga/Meditation

07:45 - 08:15 Breakfast

08:30 - 09:30 Cowboy Church Option

10:00 - 11:00 Nia Class “Rise Up”

11:00 - 11:30 Nia 5 Stages + Meditation

11:30 - 12:15 Circle Closing Ceremony

12:15 - 01:00 Lunch

01:00 - 03:00 Departures

 
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Nia 5 stages class foci:

Tuesday: writing

Wednesday: focus

Thursday: imagination

Friday: flowing

Saturday: producing

 
Writer's NEST Retreat
from 149.00

Nia, Exploration, Time & Space for Writers (and other creative souls) More Information

Very special rates have been created especially for this retreat.

Each option is a fully inclusive of Dinner, Breakfast and Lunch, classes, workshops and more. Rates are per person.

  • One Day Special Retreat. $149 (4 places)

  • Non-Residential. $699 (6 places)

  • Dormitory: 6 twin beds, 2 bunk beds, 1 queen bed. $799 (9 places)

  • Semi Private: Room with 2 Full Beds shared by 2 people $899 (6 places)

  • Private Room with 1 King or Queen Bed ensuite bathroom $1199 (2 Places)

Accommodation:
Quantity:
Book Now
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Writer's NEST Day Retreat

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Several folks shared the challenge between their desire to participate in the upcoming Writer’s NEST (Nia Exploration Space Time) and lack of ability to take off for the whole 6 Day retreat experience.

We’ve created a solution!

We’ve added a DAY RETREAT option for only $149.

For one whole day, get away, enjoy all meals, classes, group circle, time and space for writing and reflection. Get more information.

Please note,

  • at least 24 hours notice is required for booking the inclusive day retreat

  • there are a maximum of 4 places per day

SIGN ME UP NOW!

Each day includes

  • yoga sunrise class

  • 2 Nia classes

  • 1 Nia 5 stages class

  • 1 sunset experience

  • field trip option (boating, paddle-boarding, walk labyrinth, hike national forrest)

  • unlimited use of sauna, hot tub & lap pool

  • scrumptious healthy meals, coffee and tea

Check out the Full Schedule

http://www.somaranch.com/news/2019/3/12/writers-nest-retreat-schedule

Combat Winter Blues

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One of the things I LOVE about Texas is how the sunshines often and it’s warm almost all year round. (it’s one of the reasons I chose to move from the UK!). This winter has been cold, damp and very wet. I’ve found myself slipping into old habits of getting the “Winter Blues”. This is where I tend to go into to “turtle time” mode, all I want to do is curl up, binge on Hulu and eat sugar. Being able to get out at Soma Ranch, spend time with the donkeys and horses, enjoy nature and the peacefulness of the ranch is a big plus. The benefits of the far infrared sauna and therapeutic hot tub really help warm up the body and soul.

I’ve also found a few techniques that really help me not get stuck in this self destructive downward spiral of behavior. Here’s a few things that work for me:

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  1. keep a consistent early wake up time and GET UP when the alarm goes off

  2. get up when it’s dark and watch the sunrise (gives me hope)

  3. get up and get going (early morning walk or run outside)

  4. stock up on yummy teas, make a hot drink before delving into the freezer for ice cream!

  5. drink apple cider vinegar every day (my fav is warm water, stevia, ACV and tart cherry)

  6. call a friend (I like to do this while walking - a “2 for 1”)

  7. go to church

  8. help someone else

  9. keep to a schedule

  10. seek professional help (as always, if you really feel you need help seek professional guidance)

Here’s a great article that gives some info behind SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and 10 tips on how to counter.

https://www.everydayhealth.com/depression/your-best-weapons-against-the-winter-blues.aspx

We're 50/50 with Men of Nia Retreat

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2019 Men of Nia Retreat is 50/50

We are 50% booked with our upcoming 2019 Men of Nia retreat at Soma Ranch (April 26 - 28)

The present attendance is about 50/50, meaning with our registration so far we have about 50% women and 50% men signed up.

Folks have the misconception this retreat is for men only. Truth is the Men of Nia Retreat is welcoming of everyone, and we celebrate Men of Nia with 4 key World Class Male Presenters (Mark, JAG, Ray and Alan)

We are 50% booked with our upcoming Men of Nia retreat. The present attendance is about 50/50, meaning, with our registration so far we have about 50% women and 50% men signed up. Folks have the misconception this retreat is for men only. Truth is the Men of Nia Retreat is welcoming of everyone, and we celebrate Men of Nia with 4 key World Class Male Presenters (Mark, JAG, Ray and Alan)

Big thanks to Nia second degree black belt instructor, Fred Bass, who created and introduces a fabulous video series of interviews with "Men who do Nia"! Here’s his introduction:

Fred has wonderfully captured the essence of some of the fabulous Men who do Nia

click HERE for more clips from the series.

AND check out more information on the Men of Nia retreat, we’d love you to join us.

Run 2019 Miles update - eat an elephant?

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There’s a crazy expression

you can’t eat an elephant in one seating.

Although my first thought is

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who wants to eat an elephant - EVER!

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I get (and abide to) the concept. My running 2019 miles goal is a great example of this:

  • WHEN the weather is more challenging,

  • WHEN I’m leading a training or retreat

  • WHEN “life happens” and I don’t do it!

I have the tendency to tell myself “it’s all over”, “I’ve failed”, “I may as well give up” and “I’ll never get caught up”. Then I return to my spread sheet (thank you Mum xoxo - retired math teacher!) and enter the data. I then realize, in the long run, if I keep chipping away at my goal, doing my best every day, my long term goal is still achievable.

My daily goal is to run 6 miles, this helps me gain a “pocket” for the days when “life happens”. Over these last 2 weeks, some days I’ve only clocked in 2 or 3 miles and yes I go into the dramatic “it’s all over, I’ll NEVER catch up”.

However, when I enter the data and check my average requirement, I still have a good chance! my required daily average has dropped, yet in the big picture, it is an insignificant slump (from 5.43 to 5.45) that comes out to only .05 miles a day. REALLY!??? I was stressing over .05 miles? I smile, I relax, I look out the window and get out there feeling inspired to clock in a good long run for today.

What ever your goals are, I encourage you to write them down, break down goals into achievable “gulps” and keep records of achievement.

If you’d like help whether it’s personal development, teaching Nia or achieving fitness goals please contact me for a one-on-one coaching session. I LOVE helping others achieve.

FYI the beautiful elephant picture is from my former business “Studio NiaMoves” in Houston. The new owner (Angela) completed this beautiful mural, super inspiring - when in the Houston area it’s well worth going to take a look!

Living Big In A Tiny House

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At Soma Ranch, for the past 10 years, we love to look at how we can recycle, reuse and be as creative as possible with space.

Being able to create great spaces, buildings, rooms and do renovations is super helped by Joe Terry (husband, Soma Ranch CEO and “Soma Construction Department”).

Joe is an artist, with master carpentry skills, an eagle eye and a extremely creative mind. Under his expertise and guidance, we have renovated, restored and redesigned several spaces at Soma Ranch, including our beautiful dance studio, vibrant social area, peaceful rustic dormitory and massage house.

We are presently researching how to possibly add more rooms, ideally building spaces as independent cute tiny homes.

Solar power, water collecting and the possibility of being offer the grid are attractive options and constructing with shipping containers are very appealing to us.

During our recent research, we found this home made from 3 x 20ft shipping containers. The concept and design is very in line with several of our values, being energy conservative, environment conscious and enthusiastically creative! hope you enjoy taking a look around as much as we did. Feel free to add comments. Would you like to stay in an independent little bedroom until, possibly with your own toilet, sharing a shower/bathroom with another guest? option of an outdoor shower/bathroom? :-)



Aqua Yoga coming To Soma Ranch

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We are super excited to be bringing Aqua Yoga to Soma Ranch! Our pool is perfectly designed for this kind of class, retreat and training.

This is an excellent weekend for

  • FIT PROS who’d like to add aqua fitness/aqua yoga to their skill set

  • YOGA TEACHERS who’d like to add aqua

  • ANYBODY who’d like to enjoy yoga in the water, a fabulous retreat and opportunity to learn

For more information and to register click http://www.somaranch.com/trainings/aqua-yoga

Congrats Team ExtraOrdinary

Wow! we truly had an ExtraOrdinary week with Brown Belt Nia Teachers. We balanced practice and teaching with playing.

Each day the group taught a “JAM” class (this is where they each taught at least one song), guests enjoyed a class with Helen and received one-on-one specialized coaching with regards technique and teaching.

Relaxing, exploring and having plenty of time for fun and socializing all contributed to a most ExtraOrdinary week:

Relaxing with hot tub, sauna and lap pool.

Exploring the area with field excursions to labyrinth, cowboy church, juice bar, boating on Lake Conroe, hiking in the Sam Houston National Forest, and (not to be missed) ChillerBee frozen yogurt! We even found time to pick grapefruits!

Plenty of time having fun around the fire, sitting at the dining room table and walking around the property.

“Nia Brown and above” teachers interested? save the dates Feb 1 - 7, 2020 and let Helen know ASAP, open to a maximum of 8 participants.