Maybe one of your many New Year’s resolutions is to get into better shape. Or possibly you just want something active (and off campus) to do on the weekends. No matter what your reason, Oakland has plenty of places that give you the opportunity to move.
Hipline Belly Dancing
This studio is near the Rockridge shuttle stop and focuses on belly dancing but also offers classes in other kinds of dance and aerobic styles, including ones with names like “Shimmy Flow” and “Power Pop.” Right now the studio has a deal where you can get three introductory classes for $20.
Hipline’s Web site has advice for what classes you should take depending on what you want to achieve. Ask yourself if you want to “just get your butt kicked” or if you want to be a “superstar belly dancer” and then choose classes that the site recommends.
If you’re not willing to make a weekly commitment, there’s always the one-day workshop where you can learn all the moves from Beyonce’s now infamous “Single Ladies” video.
3167 College Ave. @ Alcatraz
Lake Merritt Dance Center
The Dance Center serves as a host location for a ton of different dance classes and teachers. The Center is a non-profit corporation dedicated to giving community members a place for recreation. You can try salsa, lindy hop, ballroom — or even rent out the space for your own event.
The studio offers plenty of sessions during the week, so you may be able to fit in some dance before or after classes. The advantage to this is that classes are even cheaper on week days, although they are only slightly more expensive on the weekends.
200 Grand Ave.
Oakland, CA 94610
In an incredibly convenient location (it’s just steps away from the Berkeley shuttle stop), the YWCA offers everything from “Ballet for Fun and Fitness” to “Argentine Tango.” Most classes are taught in a six-week series, but you can also drop-in just to get a taste without having to make sure you’re available every week.
You don’t have to become a member of YWCA to take classes here, although there is a discount to the class fee if you are a member. Also, these classes are open to the entire community and some are quite popular — so get there early and check online to make sure that the session isn’t already full.
2600 Bancroft Way
Berkeley, CA 94704