Faculty & Staff Wellness Programs

Mind Body Fitness

Tuesdays & Thursdays with Dana in Carver 210 (Gym A)

Description: Nia - The Joy of Movement

Nia - Mind Body Fitness

Every Nia class is an opportunity for participants to joyfully engage and integrate their mind, body, emotions, and spirit through music, movement, and community. Nia is a holistic endeavor centered in self-awareness, oriented toward self-empowerment and cultivated within the context of dynamic routines set to soul-stirring music.

These routines are created using 52 Moves -- 27 base moves (feet, stances, steps, kicks), 7 core moves (pelvis, chest, head) and 18 moves of the upper extremities (arms, hands, fingers). We play with these moves using the energetic personalities of 9 Movement Forms -- Tai Chi, Tae Kwon Do, Aikido, Jazz, Modern Dance, Duncan Dance, Yoga, the Alexander Technique and the work of Moshe Feldenkrais.

We strive to customize movements independently by consciously exploring a flexible variety of movement planes and intensity levels. And we foster creative self-expression, connection with others, and carefree whole-person authenticity through FreeDance. 

Some Benefits of Nia

  • Increased flexibility, agility, mobility, strength, and stability
  • Improved cardio-vascular health
  • Alleviation of stress and anxiety
  • Better coordination, balance, and spatial awareness
  • Enhanced competence in reading and responding to sensations in the body while in motion
  • Expanded ability to customize movement
  • Stronger and more positive sense of self in a group fitness environment
  • Greater capacity for playful exploration in the company of others


What should I wear?
Wear comfy clothes that allow for easy breathing and unfettered frolicking. How sweaty you get is totally up to you!

Do I have to dance barefoot?
Dancing barefoot is encouraged but certainly not required. Being barefoot allows for full, free movement of the 52 bones, 66 joints and hundreds of muscles, tendons, and ligaments that make up the feet and ankles. Having said that, please do whatever is most comfortable. You are also welcome to experiment by alternating back and forth between shoes and bare feet while we dance.

Do I need to have any familiarity or prior experience with dance, martial arts or anything else?
No experience of any kind is required to give Nia a try. We play with our musical movements by drawing upon the general form and flavor of 9 particular movement forms; but we are in no way learning or performing them as full, distinct practices in their own right.

What if I can't dance or just have no sense of rhythm?
Nia is a great way to find your groove and build self-confidence! It’s all about letting go and learning how to make healthy, joyful choices in how you move your body. There are no mistakes – it’s all just part of that process.

Can I do Nia if I have an injury, illness, or disability?
Yes! Simply put, the ultimate goal of every Nia class is to figure out how to use it as an opportunity to do something to feel better in our bodies. That experience will be different from person to person and changes from moment to moment! In Nia, it’s not important for you to match the movements of the instructor, conform to the choreography or move like anyone else in the room. If it feels good, do it. If it feels bad, don’t. Let your sensations be your guide and don’t worry about what you look like. The class is an offering of time, space, music, movement, ideas and inspiration that you can play with to uplift your mind, body, emotions and spirit. You are free to take, leave and alter any movement we’re playing with to meet your own personal needs.

Location:  Carver 210 (Gym A)

Cost: $50

Time:  Tuesdays & Thursdays Noon-1 pm

Class Date Information: 

  • Fall Class Start Date: Thursday 9/27/18
  • Fall Class End Date: Thursday 12/6/18

No classes on Fall Quarter Holidays:

  • No class on Thursday 11/22: Thanksgiving


How to Sign Up:Click here!

Page Updated 09.20.2018