Jenn Hicks

Archive for the ‘Student Stories’ Category

Dancing Through Life with Pleasure: Nia Student Stories

Tuesday, March 31st, 2015

I’ve been enjoying dancing with Lee Weisser since I started teaching at The Healthy Joint this past summer. I knew she had a bit of a dance background, but I wanted to know more. I wanted to know where the beautiful smile and enthusiasm on the dance floor lived. Lately I’ve been really inspired when I watch how she connects to her body and lets the music move her. It is really, really satisfying for me as a teacher!

So last week I asked Lee if she would tell me her Nia story.  Here it is!

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Lee Weisser, M.Ed, ACC, Lee Weisser Communications

Jenn: How long have you been practicing Nia?

Lee: Since August 2014.

Jenn: Did you have any initial fears or reservations about trying Nia?  

Lee: No. I had heard about Nia for some time and was excited to try it. I did modern dance many years ago and had been searching for a way to enjoy the thrill of movement and get fit at the same time, without injuring myself.

Jenn: How do you describe Nia to others?

Lee: This is a challenge! Sometimes I just show them some moves…because it’s hard to describe.

Jenn: What motivates you to come to class? Why do you keep coming back?

Lee: I know I will feel positive and energized, both during the class and afterward. Jenn is an inspiring and enthusiastic instructor and makes all her classes both fun and uplifting. Jenn chooses music that promotes well-being and self-esteem.

Jenn: How does Nia make you feel?

Lee: Nia makes me feel connected to my body, to my soul, and to humanity in a very positive way.

Jenn: Has anything changed in you body or your life since you began practicing Nia?

Lee: Nia has increased my cardiovascular fitness and improves my mood during every class.

Jenn: Have you had any “aha” moments in class (moments that struck a chord with you or resonated deeply?)

Lee: There are some movements that I recall from my modern dance days that help me re-experience the exhilaration I felt in my youth. I appreciate being able to move my body freely, to use my mind to concentrate on routines, and I never hurt my body as a result of the classes. This is huge for me, since in the past I have often injured myself when trying to get fit.

Jenn: Anything else you’d like to share?

Lee: I always look forward to Nia classes – especially with Jenn! She is the best!


Thank you, Lee, for sharing your story and experiences with Nia!


Want to share your experience and inspire others? Contact me!

New to Nia and ready to experience a class? Take a look at my schedule or visit to find a class in your neighbourhood!

Dancing Through Life with Pleasure: Nia Student Stories

Friday, December 12th, 2014

A few weeks back, I asked one of my most dedicated students, Heather, what Nia meant to her. I’m always keen to expand my perspective by hearing about my student’s personal experiences. Getting outside of my own head also helps give me ideas about approaching my teaching in different ways.

Nia-dance-fitnessHere’s Heather’s story:

“I started with NIA in 2009 when I was 62. I knew nothing about it except that it was a new class starting at my gym.

I tried it and liked it; except I wasn’t too keen about doing a fitness class in my bare feet (I wear orthotics). I also was worried about the turning around. I felt that I would get dizzy. Gradually, over the years, I have come to respect and admire each instructor I have encountered for their preparation, knowledge and understanding of what the movements they are inspiring can do for the body, mind, heart and soul. I trust in the kinesiology of the routines – the very simple fact of crossing all three mid lines (left/right, front/back, and top/bottom) in each class is so integral for maintaining and initiating paths in the brain. I know that I am not just boosting my heart rate. I am building my strength, toning my muscles, and improving my balance (very handy on icy winter sidewalks). All of this while moving to incredible music – what’s not to like?

Now, I can say that it is a crucial part of my life. When I am dancing, I forget my troubles (for the most part and for the time being). Although being of full figure, during a NIA session, I feel as light and lithe as a wood sprite. After a class, I feel euphoric, and that’s why I hardly ever miss one.”

Thank you, Heather, for sharing your story and experiences with Nia!


Want to share your experience and inspire others? Contact me!

New to Nia and ready to experience a class? Take a look at my schedule or visit to find a class in your neighbourhood!