The NIA technique is a body / mind fitness program that originally meant impact-free aerobics, a health and fitness alternative that emerged in the 1980s, and has evolved to include integrative neurological practices and teachings. The Nia Technique was founded in 1983 by Debbie Rosas and Carlos AyaRosas in the San Francisco area. Nia combines martial arts, modern dance arts and yoga in a music workout.
From 1972 to 1983, Debbie Rosas operated an exercise company in the San Francisco Bay Area known as the Bod Squad. In 1983, a series of sports-related injuries prompted her to research and develop an alternative method of aerobic exercise and bodybuilding aimed at safe, non-impact, and body-based movement. This led to the establishment of the Nia technique. The headquarters of Nia Technique moved to Portland, Oregon in 1991 and is currently supervised by Debbie Rosas, CEO.
Nia cardio fitness classes are taught by licensed instructors in the Nia technique. Each class includes conscious movement tips and somatic education; Class cycles include warm-up, non-impact durable aerobic conditioning, strength training, cooling and stretching. Nia Fitness’s courses are taught to music, including pop, electronica, jazz, Latin, New Age, Indian and hip hop. They employ 52 basic movements and techniques that draw on a combination of jazz, modern dance, and Duncan, Tai Chi, Taekwondo, and Aikido styles; and the bodymind healing arts of the Feldenkrais Method, the Alexander Technique, and Yoga.