Wolverine Farm hosts free weekly Nia class

Sarah Ehrlich

When: Every Monday at 5:30 p.m.

Where: Wolverine Farm Letterpress & Publick House

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Cost: Free, donations encouraged

Non-Impact Aerobics, or Nia for short, started in the `80s and has since evolved into a popular form of exercise. Nia combines martial arts, modern dance arts and yoga into a workout set to worldly music and beats. You can now experience Nia every Monday at Wolverine Farm Letterpress & Publick House with instructor Liza Claiborne of Fort Collins.

Claiborne danced ballet throughout school but found it difficult to dive back into it after starting a career and having children. After exploring some classes that local gyms offered, she stumbled across Nia and fell in love. Claiborne became trained in Nia and taught classes at Old Town Athletic for six years.

“I ended up going back to school and now I am busy teaching first grade,” Claiborne said. “But I was missing the movement, the people and the music so some of us put our heads together and found this space to keep the class going. With Nia, I feel most comfortable in my body.”

The Nia class begins with light movements and choreography created by Claiborne and progresses into fast paced, full body movements. The moves are similar to the discipline of ballet mixed with the fluid motion of Tai Chi. In addition to working up a sweat and moving muscles, Claiborne hopes her class is a place of zero judgement where people of all ages can discover the power of their own bodies.

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Liza Claiborne shows people many disciplines of dance through her Nia class. Photo credit: Sarah Ehrlich

Laura Resau, author of “The Lightning Queen” novel and class member, believes Nia creates a great community of trust and inspiration.

“It’s kind of nice to free your inhibitions and have a great time dancing,” Resau said. “There’s trust because you know others are here for the same reason and won’t be judgmental.”

Diane Findley, a Fort Collins artist and class member believes Nia is a movement for health.

“Liza saved my life with this class, she really did,” Findley said. “I needed help getting movement in my daily life and I feel so much better. Nia is a lifesaver for me.”

Nia with Liza is held every Monday at 5:30 p.m. at the Wolverine Farm Letterpress & Publick House. This is a free class, but donations are encouraged.

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Collegian reporter Sarah Ehrlich can be reached at entertainment@collegian.com and on Twitter @SarahEhrlich96.