Today I had a new Nia student. She was eager to take her shoes off when given the invitation to do so. I shared that I have done so much healing in my feet through dancing Nia barefoot. (More about healing my plantar fasciitis through Nia here).
Even though Nia was designed to be a safe barefoot practice, for some folks taking off shoes is difficult (for a variety of reasons).
My discussion with the new student got me thinking about my lower body alignment. A good part of the reason I have been able to heal my feet is because of what I’ve learned about alignment through Nia.
Our bodies are designed such that when our ankles, knees and hips are all facing in the same direction, they work most efficiently.
Keep your lower body happy and healthy!
Our bodies are happiest when our hips are balanced over our knees and our knees are balanced over our ankles. When hips, knees and toes are all facing in the same direction, our body feels safe and stable. With this alignment, our body knows where it’s going. More importantly, we don’t run the risk of torquing the knee or stressing the hip joint by asking them to do something they weren’t designed to do.
If our hips, knees and ankles are not stacked up on each other, there is the possibility for muscle imbalances and restrictions in the range of motion of our joints.
Pay attention to alignment
Keeping hips, knees, ankles (and feet) happy means paying attention to this alignment, both on and off the dance floor!