Instructional Classes

We have a broad range of instructional classes available in Arts, Dance, Fitness, and Martial Arts. Many classes are designed for beginning and intermediate skill levels, but there are also advanced classes. Class offerings vary from quarter to quarter. Explore quarterly offerings directly on our Recreation online store.

Programs and Classes

Martial Arts

The UCLA Recreation Martial Arts Program typically offers over 20 different styles of Martial Arts from over 10 different countries. Participate in our Martial Arts Program through Instructional Classes, Club Sports, Bruin Self Defense Program, Custom Workshops & Seminars, Youth Summer Camps, Athletic Team Training, Active Shooter & Department Safety Programs, and The Martial Arts Leadership Team.

Learn More About UCLA Martial Arts Club Sports and Beyond

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Martial Arts Pass - Unlimited Classes!

Experience the diversity of the UCLA Martial Arts Program with the quarterly Martial Arts Pass! With the MA Pass, you can drop in anytime to over 30 weekly martial arts classes and experience traditional martial arts, self-defense base hybrid martial arts, and more!

Martial Arts Instructional Classes

Here is the list of regularly offered instructional classes. The full schedule is available quarterly.

  • Applied Martial Arts: Learn a variety of martial arts and movement skills to enhance your goals in movement
  • Boxing: These classes will introduce you to the basic techniques used in this ancient Olympic sport such as jabs, crosses bob and weaves, hooks, and quick feet movements
  • Bruin Self-Defense: Learn fundamental safety principles like avoidance, awareness and mindset, in combination with physical techniques
  • Capoeira: Learn attacks through kicks and headbutts that are opposed by defenses close to the ground
  • Grappling - Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu: A martial art and combat sport that focuses on grappling and especially ground fighting
  • Grappling - Judo: This class will develop real-world safety and self-defense strategies, all while improving physical fitness, flexibility, strength, coordination, and agility
  • Hapkido: Students will learn blocking, strikes and kicks, joint manipulation, throws, off-balancing techniques, and basic knife, stick, cane, and hanbo strikes
  • Indonesian Silat: Students will learn ground postures & movement, footwork, blocks, and strikes as part of conditioning the body for both ground and stand-up fighting
  • Kali - Filipino Martial Arts: This martial art is best known for its stick & knife fighting styles. Students will be instructed in either the Inosanto Method or the Pekiti Tirsia Method
  • Kickboxing: This kickboxing class emphasizes footwork, balance, agility, and timing in unison with striking attacks
  • Kickboxing - Muay Thai: Students will learn Thai traditions and disciplines such as hand, elbow, knee, and kick strikes to the head, body, and legs
  • Mixed Martial Arts: This is a technique and conditioning class only. It emphasizes the use of focus mitts, Thai pads, and grappling

Martial Arts Fundamentals

The videos below are curated from a variety of different martial arts styles. They are separated by fundamental topics that encompass the movements, techniques and skills that are essential to a wide variety of martial arts and serve as a good starting point for beginners and a refresher or a potential new approach for intermediate to advanced martial artists.

Martial Arts Fundamentals Video Playlists

Bruin Self Defense Tips

Arts & Music

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The Arts are an important aspect of our basic quality of life. The Arts not only enrich our experiences but educate us about the world we live in, provide a means for self exploration and nurture the celebration of cultural diversity. Cultivate and improve your appreciation of the arts. Expand your cultural horizons and experience personal and recreational enrichment with these introductory level arts classes.

  • Digital Photography

Digital Photography is designed for all levels of photographers. Students will learn the fundamentals of photography in a course setting structured to enhance their creative abilities through group feedback and critiques. Although not required, students are encouraged to work with their images with software such as Photoshop, Lightroom or Aperture. Iphoto and other editing software is acceptable as well. Assignments will vary from sports to portraiture and other topics with the overall goal being a firm understanding of camera operation to achieve quality photographs in a variety of settings. Although the syllabus represents the basic structure of the course, it is subject to change to meet the needs and levels of the class as a whole

  • Figure Drawing

In this class, you will learn the basics of drawing from a nude figure. The class is geared towards beginner and intermediate drawers, and no previous figure drawing experience is necessary as all concepts are simplified and clearly explained. We will draw from short gesture quick poses and longer poses, from both male and female models of varying body types. Learn about rhythm, shading, weight shift, drawing materials, etc. Equal emphasis will be given to accuracy and emotional expression.

  • Guitar
  • Improv Comedy NEW!!!
  • Mixed Media Arts

This collage class is designed for various skill levels and no previous experience is necessary. An array of techniques and emphasis on the principles of art will be introduces and incorporated into the art work. Some of these techniques include: creating backgrounds with textured paint, image transfers, and antiquing with acrylic paint. The goal is to complete two finished collages by the end of the quarter.

  • Mixin' & Scratchin'

Create your own DJ name for "battles" and "showcases" while you learn mixin', scratchin' and sampling in this fun and creative music class. You will learn song structure, how to use B.P.M (beats per minute,) the tempo of a song, how to mix seamlessly, and finally, how to put a set together. In addition, you will learn how to use a variety of equipment from turntables to mixers and CD's

  • Taiko Drumming

Come learn how to play Taiko, Japanese American drumming, from UCLA students just like you! In this class, you will also develop an understanding of the history of the art throughout the world, as well as learn the fundamentals of playing the Taiko. Additionally, you will be introduced to the various styles and forms for playing the instrument that have developed throughout the United States and Japan. Taiko is a great way to workout and tone your entire body while learning a little bit about Japanese-American culture along the way. Register and come learn how to play these drums of thunder!

  • Watercolor Painting

Watercolor painting will teach the fundamentals of the art as well as experimental techniques. The class is designed for all skill levels, and no previous experience is necessary as techniques will be introduced and incorporated into the work. The syllabus will frame the course, but the subject will change according to the needs and levels of the class as a whole. The goal is to create two finished paintings by the end of the quarter, and students are encouraged to work outside of class to hone their skills.



Beginners and Intermediate dancers will be taught fundamental ballet barre techniques, center work, and across-the-floor exercises. This class will be geared toward beginners, but instructors will give more advanced progressions for more intermediate and advanced dancers.

Group of students practicing ballet with a bar
Group of students doing the splits in a ballet class


Throughout the quarter, dancers will practice dance technique during basic as well as more intricate across the floor combinations. The dancers will also learn several short combinations during class which include jazz technique and different styles of jazz.

Group of students dancing in front of a mirror with one foot in the air
Group of students dancing with arms out and one leg in the air


This class teaches hip hop fundamentals and a fusion of various hip hop styles. This Hip Hop class will improve your ability to learn choreography, understand rhythm and musicality as well as increase your cardiovascular fitness level.


This class emphasizes postural alignment, core body awareness/engagement and offers beginning students a multi-modality approach to ballet. Basic barre technique is infused with floor barre, as well as an infusion of jazz pilates and yoga. Simple choreography is integrated to introduce awareness of rhythm/musicality and to prepare dancers for center and across the floor practice.

Belly Dancing

This class will cover the fundamentals of Middle Eastern Dance. Students will learn foot patterns and basic movements of the hips, torso, and arms. You will learn how to do body isolations, shimmies, undulations, turns, as well as other basic belly dancing techniques and how to execute these movements in isolation and layered upon each other. This class is great for those new to Middle Eastern Dance as well as those who want to gain a deeper understanding for this dance form.

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Intro to Barbell

This class is for the beginning strength training student looking to build their foundation before starting a barbell program. Throughout this course, you will learn the fundamental movements of strength training.

girl squatting with a barbell outside with an instructor
Group of three students squatting with a kettlebell

Intro to Strength Training

This class starts with mastery of body weight movements and exercises and progresses into weightlifting and powerlifting.

Reformer Pilates

Reformer Pilates is a tremendous workout that builds full body strength and mobility. It is especially good for building better posture. Mixed level classes are offered that will accommodate beginners and intermediates.

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Tennis Lessons

Small group lessons for all levels.

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Swim Lessons

A variety of swim lessons are available for all levels such as: Youth Swim Lessons, Beginner Swim Lessons, Intermediate Swim Lessons, and Swim for Fitness. Please visit the Aquatics page to learn more and for information regarding registration!

Instructor in the lap lanes of the pool with a student and a kick board
An instructor watching two students swim in the lap lanes of a pool