Our Mission
Body Vida is committed to providing state of the art body-mind-spirit fitness, wellness, and expressive arts programming and education to the Austin community. We offer opportunities for innovative creativity, celebration, and optimal health for people of all ages, fitness levels, and backgrounds.

Our Vision

  • Offering safe, supportive, nurturing experiences to the Austin community where people of all backgrounds can nourish and cultivate their body, mind and spirit.
  • Supporting Austin as a thriving cultural center for dance, arts, music and integrative lifestyle practices.
  • Educating and empowering people to live happier, healthier lives.
  • Supporting local and national healers/practitioners through offering continuing education training and workshops.
  • Establishing Mind-Body-Spirit Expressive Arts and Movement curricula to be implemented into educational, public health and social institutions locally and nationwide.


Body Vida's programs take place in the finest Austin area studios.  As locations vary from program to program, please visit the program and workshop descriptions for specific information.


Elissa Shapiro, LCSW
Program Director / Instructor / Facilitator Elissa

I discovered Nia many years ago after little to no movement or dance background and completely fell in love - with moving, with playing, with having a body. I noticed tremendous changes in my physical, mental, and emotional health and committed myself to sharing this work with others.  My educational background includes a Masters in Social Work, in which I spent many years working in mental health agencies, hospitals, and schools with children, adolescents, and families. From this I bring with me my
dedication and passion for guiding others towards self-discovery, creativity, and healing through the expressive arts.  My own personal journey has included growth and transformation through movement practices such as Nia and Soul Motion, which continue to play huge roles in my life.  My vision is to create a safe and supportive place for people of all walks of life to find physical, emotional and spiritual healing, connection, and growth.  I am grateful for the opportunities I have been provided to co-create and offer Body Vida to our Austin community. I welcome and invite you to share in my joy – come move, come play, come fall in love!

Elissa received her Bachelors in Psychology from Emory University and her Masters in Social Work from the University of Texas at Austin. She has extensive training in art, movement and other expressive arts therapies. Elissa is a Certified Nia Instructor, as well as one of only nine Soul Motion teachers worldwide.  Her warmth, creativity, and passion offer students a nurturing and inviting space to explore creativity, individuality and healing. 


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