Inner Moves: Celebrating 25 years of teaching Nia

Past and present students and friends of Dhyana Bartkow ( are invited to gather to celebrate her 25 years of teaching Nia. Since 1993 Bartkow has taught people to awaken and empower their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual selves through Nia’s innovative approach to fitness.

Coming from a high school teaching background as well as an instructor of aerobics, yoga and meditation, Bartkow trained with the creators of Nia and started teaching Nia at Gibsons Kinsmen Hall, becoming a Nia Black Belt in 1998. She currently teaches Nia at Dance Works Studio in Gibsons on Saturdays and Tuesdays at 10 a.m., and in Mexico from January to March.

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Despite severe spinal injuries from accidents that also tore shoulder tendons and separated her pelvis, Nia’s Moving to Heal approach gave Bartkow internal awareness by drawing on modern dance, martial arts, yoga, Alexander Technique and Feldenkrais.

She was able to learn new fitness principles and safe form, while cultivating centredness and expressive freedom to heal psychologically, gaining the positive effects of aerobic activity – increased levels of vitality, strength, endurance and youthfulness – without adding stress to vulnerable and unstable joints with rapid compressive activity, and developing greater length and flexibility of the spine through range of motion and upper and lower body connectedness.

Bartkow brings these years of personal mind-body healing experience to her students of all ages. Twenty-five years teaching longevity is testimony to both the joyfulness and benefits of Nia. When asked about her age, Bartkow’s favourite response is: “I don’t believe in age. I believe in energy!”

The celebration is on Friday, Oct. 12 and starts with a potluck dinner at 6 p.m., followed by a dance at 8 p.m. with the reggae band Monty Montego. For more information and location, contact Bartkow at or 604-886-9737.

– Submitted

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