"There is the Natural Time of the Mayans with the 13 moons to a year and there is the Natural Time of one’s body and one’s own movements. In a Nia workout class even as the teacher is leading the participants through a routine, the participants are encouraged to follow their own natural time....So even though [teacher and participants] are moving all together [they] are doing it in [their] own time....Moving in natural time helps us connect deeply with our own bodies."
Thus, a sense of individuality and self-knowledge is achieved in the midst of a deep connectedness with others. And, no one is forced to move in ways unnatural to her body, yet she is encouraged to explore the expansiveness of movement and may be inspired by the movements of her fellow classmates and teacher. This is something I have loved about Nia since I began dancing about two years ago. Furthermore, Pruitt explains,
"Nia also considers 13/20 to be the code of Natural Time. There are 13 major joints and 20 digits of the body. Body movements moving all 13 joints and 20 digits is a way to receive information from the body."
As my Nia instructor, Caroline Dyar, explained this concept, I began thinking about how I could fashion a jewelry collection around 13/20. Perhaps I could have 13 stones known for their healing properties (as many people experience joint pain no matter how active they are) paired with 20 stones known for their stimulating properties (to encourage a kinesthetic, material connection with one's environment). I am now thinking of and researching materials and sketching designs that will enable me to craft a collection devoted to the concept of Natural Time. I'm looking forward to posting more about his endeavor soon!
See this interesting article for more information on the Mayans and Natural Time: http://www.mayanmajix.com/art190i.html