For nearly 40 years, Nia has been bringing people home to their bodies through moving and inspiring body, mind and soul.

What is Nia?

Nia is a class, practice and lifestyle that blends movement, mindfulness, connection and joy to provide a whole-body / whole-being experience that activates, transforms and liberates body, mind and spirit.

Integrating ancient wisdom and modern science with elements of dance, martial arts and healing arts, Nia offers physical, mental and emotional conditioning, healing and transformation that is accessible and attainable for every body. 

Who can do Nia?

Nia is for every body.  Any body of any age, fitness level, size, shape and ability can practice Nia.

Nia practitioners come from all walks of life but are united in their desire to feel better, move better and live better.

What can I expect in a Nia class?

Every Nia class incorporates elements from dance, martial arts and healing arts to provide an accessible, whole-body workout using 52 simple moves and a balance of form/technique and freeform movement. Most Nia classes are 20-60 minutes and will guide you through the 7-cycles of a Nia class.

What are the 7-cycles of a Nia class?

  • Cycle 1: Set the Focus + Intent - The focus tells us where we put our attention, the intent tells us why. Setting the Focus + Intent integrates your body and mind to create a mindful movement experience rather than simply a “workout.”

  • Cycle 2: Step-In - We step-in to class, symbolically stepping over a threshold to remove distractions and become fully present for the duration of the class experience.

  • Cycle 3: Warm-Up - We’ll warm up slowly, moving the body’s 13 major joints to stimulate circulation, mindfully increase the heart rate and increase oxygenation throughout the body.

  • Cycle 4: Get Moving - We’ll spend the majority of a Nia class in the Get Moving cycle. Guided by an inspiring soundtrack, you will stimulate cardiovascular conditioning, release endorphins and have a whole lot of fun. You are always invited to move in your body’s way and increase or decrease the intensity as desired.

  • Cycle 5: Cool Down - Just like we warmed up slowly, we’ll cool down slowly and intentionally, bringing down the heart rate and prepare your body to move to the earth.

  • Cycle 6: FloorPlay - In the FloorPlay cycle, we use gravity, time, space and the floor to consciously condition and self-heal the body - building strength and increasing flexibility and mobility.

  • Cycle 7: Step-Out - Just as we stepped in, at the close of the Nia class, we’ll intentionally step-out, and step-into the rest of our life, leaving behind anything that no longer serves.

I have two left feet… can I still do Nia? 

This is the most common question we receive. Other variations include “I’m not a dancer…”, “I’m not coordinated…” or “I have no rhythm… is Nia for me?” 

The answer to all of these questions is 100% YES.  While Nia does incorporate elements of dance - it’s not like any dance you’ve experienced before.  It’s not about getting the steps “right” or moving just like your teacher or other students.  It’s about moving in YOUR body’s way - guided and encouraged by a teacher who honors that each and every body is unique. 

You’ll learn simple steps that are repeated to create easy-to-follow patterns to activate and engage your brain while also conditioning your body.  While it’s normal to feel a little awkward whenever you’re beginning something new, most students report feeling more confident and comfortable within a few classes.  

What are the benefits of Nia?

Nia offers a long list of benefits including (but not limited to):

  • Increased confidence, pleasure and joy of living in your body (Many practitioners share that they finally feel good in their own skin)

  • Increased balance, agility, grace and flexibility

  • Enhanced endurance, stamina and lung capacity

  • Enhanced strength, muscle tone and definition 

  • Reduced stress and an enhanced sense of calm and relaxation

  • Improved concentration and cognitive function

  • Heightened sexual function and pleasure

  • Enhanced emotional resilience and reduced depression and anxiety

  • Improved sleep

  • Strengthened immunity

  • Improved sense of overall well-being: Body, Mind, Emotions and Spirit

  • And so much more!

What do I wear for Nia?

Wear anything that you feel good in and allows you to move comfortably. Consider layers to add or subtract as you warm up and cool down. Most practitioners practice Nia in bare feet. If you have concerns about being barefoot, consider a soft-soled shoe.

Can I do Nia if I’m out of shape?

YES!  Nia can be adapted for any level of fitness, age or ability.  If you are just beginning your movement journey, you may want to begin with a Nia Moving to Heal class (seated options are available.) 

Classic Nia and Move IT classes offer more vigor and conditioning.  In all Nia classes, you’re invited and encouraged to listen to your body and do just what feels right to you. 

With practice, you’ll learn to move in your body’s own way, time and speed. With consistent practice, your endurance, capacity and skill will improve!

I’m in great shape. Will Nia actually give me a good workout?

ABSOLUTELY!  Nia can be personalized for your level of fitness and can be made as intense (or gentle) as you desire. 

Nia is practiced by Olympic Athletes and beginners alike.  Nia offers an entire suite of tools and techniques to personalize the intensity of your experience and get just what you and your body need!

I have an injury, illness or physical disability. Can I do Nia?

Before beginning any movement program, you should always consult with your doctor.

However, Nia is based on the design of the body and can be modified to accommodate physical disabilities and support self-healing for most injuries and illnesses.

If you are living with acute or chronic injury, illness or physical disability, a Nia Moving to Heal class may be a good place to start.

Alternatively, you may choose to schedule a private session with one of our licensed Nia teachers or trainers.

What is the science behind Nia?

Nia is based on The Body’s Way, which means using the body’s natural design to improve function.

The biochemistry, joints and muscles are triggered using 52 body-centered moves, imagination, music, emotion and vocal sound. Movements work with and against gravity and include: abduction, adduction; flexion, extension; eversion, inversion; dorsal flexion, plantar flexion, pronation and supination; horizontal flexion, extension; rotation inward, outward, upward and downward, elevation, depression, and circumduction.

Nia addresses the body’s five main sensations: flexibility, strength, mobility, agility and stability and focuses on conditioning the body and the nervous system.

What does it meant that Nia is a "Practice" and "Lifestyle"?

Much like the practice of Yoga, Nia can be experienced as a “Class” a “Practice” or a “Lifestyle.”

Most people begin by taking the Nia “Class” and experience the benefits, joy and freedom of Nia on the “dance floor.”

A Nia “Practice” develops as students attend classes as a consistent part of their life and routine.

Finally, many students discover they want to take the benefits they’re experiencing in their Nia classes and practice off the dance floor and into LIFE.

Enrolling in the Nia White Belt begins the Nia Body + Life Education path and provides deep somatic education with tools, techniques and practices to integrate Nia into every aspect of life.

Who created Nia?

Nia was created by founders Debbie and Carlos Rosas in 1983. In an age of “no pain, no gain” and “feel-the-burn” high-impact aerobic fitness, Debbie and Carlos believed there had to be a better way.

Leaving successful careers in the booming high-impact aerobics industry behind, they embarked on a quest to find an alternative way to move, condition and heal the body that would integrate the body, mind and spirit and, ultimately, revolutionize the face of fitness as we know it.

How do you pronounce "Nia"?


How do I become a Nia teacher?

The first step to become a Nia Teacher is to enroll in a Nia White Belt training!

CLICK HERE to learn more!

What is included in a Nia® On Demand subscription?

Membership includes access to an incredible catalog of on-demand Nia experiences ranging from 5 to 75 minutes, podcasts, meditations, interviews and more!

Find classes for all levels and abilities - from gentle, seated 'Moving to Heal' experiences to high energy athletic experiences that will leave you dripping with sweat.

How do I cancel my Nia® On Demand subscription?

If you don’t want to continue, you can cancel your membership at any time.

Follow the prompts to cancel on the Billing page of your Nia® On Demand account, and your membership will not renew.

Please note that there aren’t refunds for partially unused membership periods.

Also, please note that if you subscribed to Nia® On Demand on an external app such as iOS, Android, Roku, FireTV, etc, you will need to cancel your subscription within the app itself.

Please contact us with any questions.

What Makes Nia® Different

Nia is NOT your ordinary 'dance fitness' workout. Nia is an experience that helps you discover and experience more of who you are and what you love.

Nia is for everybody and every body. Set to a variety of musical styles and rhythms, Nia will make you fall in love with movement.

Nia classes are whole-body experiences blending structured and free movement inspired by martial arts, dance and healing arts.

Instructors are trained to guide youthrough correct technique and provide options to support you if you're just getting started or are a skilled mover.

Hands down best movement life therapy I've experienced.  The music will call you, the rhythms will send you tapping, twirling, stretching, flowing to heal this one of a kind body we've been gifted with.  Embrace it and Nia will love you back!!

Ellen P.

Nia Student

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