Healthy Pursuits, A Full Spectrum of Fitness and Wellness

Mind Body Fitness

As part of the Healthy Pursuits program, Mind Body Fitness offers a wide range of classes to improve health and fitness through a connection from the inside and out. The goal of the Healthy Pursuits Program is for the students, faculty and staff of Auraria Campus to lead a healthier and less stressful lifestyle. All Mind Body Fitness classes are free for Auraria Campus Members. For Group Fit Classes all MSU Denver Students may particiapate for free. For all other Auraria Campus Members a Membership to Campus Rec is requried. 

The Fall 2017 Schedule is in full swing There are no classes on Monday, September 4th or over fall break (Nov. 20-24). Please see below for more information about the classes, instructors and special events. 

‌ Students doing Zumba ‌‌ Students doing Yoga

These classes will relax, recharge and reinvigorate you! Many of the classes focus on breathing techniques and posture to strengthen the body.  We have highly trained and dedicated instructors who specialize in the class they teach. There is no registration to attend the classes and all of the equipment is provided.  Campus Recreation at Auraria offers many additional fitness programming including personal training, Outdoor Pursuits and adaptive fitness. 

  • All students, faculty, and staff affiliated with Auraria Campus (MSU Denver, CCD, CU Denver and AHEC) may attend any Mind Body Fitness class
  • All Mind Body Fitness classes are free of charge to Auraria Campus members
  • All equipment is provided
  • All Mind Body Fitness classes are in PE 103 unless otherwise denoted
  • No shoes are required for classes with the exception of Zumba® which requires tennis shoes
  • Please sign in for every class you attend
  • Need more information? (303) 556-6954


Mat Pilates is a series of floor exercises focusing on increasing your strength, coordination and flexibility while promoting uniform muscle alignment. All of the exercises are linked to a specific breath pattern aiding in a deeper core engagement and relieving stress.


The chakras are described in yoga as the subtle energy centers of the body.  Each week will focus on one of the 7 chakras, starting from the root chakra and working our way up. The class will link the chakras to yoga postures and you will leave feeling balanced with a deeper understanding the chakra system. 


Stay energized during the midday! This class combines the physically powerful practice of Vinyasa Yoga along with the nourishing, meditative aspects of Hatha Yoga so you can get over that midday hump. 



Flow Yoga is an active style of yoga linking poses together with rhythmic breathing. Generally more physically challenging than Hatha Yoga, Flow Yoga calms the mind and tones the body.


Gentle Yoga is a great place for those who want to take it slower. Classes focus on releasing tension, connecting with the breath and working with the joints. Gentle yoga brings balance to a hectic schedule.


Zumba is a combination of international dance rhythms combined with dance and fitness exercises meant to engage and captivate for life! Every class feels like a party.





Beth Sandlin

Coordinator/Pilates Instructor

Beth Sandlin has been the coordinator for the Healthy Pursuits Mind Body Fitness program since 2011 and has been teaching for the program since 2005. She enjoys working on Auraria Campus because of the diverse population and strongly believes that Mind Body fitness classes can benefit everyone.

Beth started training in the Pilates Method as a college student and has been teaching Pilates for over 10 years. She has a comprehensive Pilates certification through Body Arts and Science International Pilates. Beth enjoys helping people access the many benefits of Pilates and feels that people can benefit from doing Pilates out of their own home, which is why she started Trifecta Pilates, offering free Pilates classes via YouTube.


Derik Eselius

Yoga Instructor

Derik Eselius has been a student of meditation since 1991 and has maintained a daily practice for over 20 years. He has studied with world renowned masters from both the Buddhist and Yoga traditions both in the U.S. and in Asia. In 2003 he established Axis Yoga Trainings, a school exclusively dedicated to yoga teacher trainings at both the 200 and 300 hour level. You can find out more about his intensive yoga programs at

He served as the Mind-Body Coordinator for Kaiser Permanente for 8 years and continues to teach classes for them. He also enjoys introducing college students to the practice of yoga and meditation through his work at the Auraria Campus. 


Christopher Jennings

Yoga Instructor

Christopher Jennings, Ed.D is a Yogi, RYT 200, who wants to help people become better learners, enhance the creative process and overcome trauma caused by stress. He is a Veteran of the US Army having served in Panama during Operation Just Cause and during Operation Desert Storm. He earned his Bachelor's Degree at MSU Denver in 1996 and his Doctoral Degree at the University of Wyoming for Instructional Technologies in 2011. Chris completed his Yoga Teacher Training certification and he practices regularly at Asana Yoga Studio in Olde Town Arvada, Colorado. Finally, Chris is also an Associate Professor  at MSU Denver in the Department of Journalism and Technical Communication.


Erin Mathiason

Yoga Instructor

Erin Mathiason is a life-long student of yoga both on and off the mat. She has taught yoga in a variety of Denver Metro locations for almost 20 years and is recognized by Yoga Alliance as an Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher. In addition to receiving her certification in the Day-Star Method of Hatha Yoga (a classical Hatha Yoga style) in 1998, she completed the first level of Anusara Yoga teacher training. Additionally, Erin is certified as a Holistic Health Practitioner, Hypnotherapist, Laughter Yoga Leader and SilverSneakers Yoga Instructor. She currently serves on a yoga teacher training faculty and is writing a book on contemporary yoga history.



Lakshmi Nair

Yoga Instructor

Lakshmi Nair has been teaching yoga in Denver/Littleton since 2004.  She studied at Integral Yoga Ashram in San Francisco, Kaivalyadhama and Yoga Ashram in Lonavla, India. She completed her yoga teacher certification at Vivekananda Yoga Kendra near Bangalore, India.  She has a Master's Degree in South Asian from the University of California, Berkeley. Lakshmi is the lead instructor for Littleton Yoga Center's 200 hour yoga teacher training program and she is the founder of Satya Yoga Immersion for People of Color, Denver's first and only yoga teacher training program for people of color, a unique program which integrates yoga as a spiritual tradition with social justice.  


Cathy Phelps

Zumba Instructor

Cathy is a licensed Zumba® Instructor and a student of African dance. She is a former member of Joda & Friends, African Dance and Drumming – South of the Sahara. She is enchanted by all forms of international dance and has been dancing for 20 years.