Mestra Edna Lima's Capoeira in the University

Capoeira is not new in the University environment but there has never been an organized approach to developing a system of shared understanding and support and eventually an international University Capoeira Games.

Edna Lima's Capoeira has an opportunity to encourage and motivate University students to learn and appreciate modern Capoeira, promote understanding of Capoeira as an organized cultural and martial art, extend Capoeira into the community by developing a professional level of instruction, provide leadership to the Capoeira community by introducing professional standards, and develop a accredited Capoeira instruction that includes the ethnographic, cultural, social, and performance elements or our art.

Capoeira Workout™ Fitness Standards
Long Island University World Dance Program

Mestra Edna Lima, MS, Chief Instructor
John Loeber, MS, Clinical Exercise Physiologist

Mestra Lima conducting dynamometry testing

Almost every fitness class, including martial arts derivatives, claims remarkable fitness achievements: get a better, healthier body and mind. It sounds good and seems to be true ... but this may really be an unfulfilled promise ... there has been little research and even less evidence of health-related fitness for any of these classes.

Mestra Edna Lima decided to examine whether Capoeira Workout™ training actually achieves significant health and fitness effects with a scientific study. She has an academic background in physical education, teaches Sports Science and World Dance at several New York universities, and has the clinical resources to investigate the physiological effects of Capoeira training.

Capoeira Workout Study
Phase I

Started a new evidence-based research study with a group of students during a 12-week semester of Capoeira Workout classes at Long Island University. The test protocol including anthropometric, hemodynamic, and spirometric measurements (body composition [SKF, bio-impedance], HR / BP performance [HRM, HRpk, RPP], pulse-oximetry [SaO2], and respiratory capacity [FVC, FEV1]). The data validated the study methods used during the pilot program.

Capoeia Workout Study
Phase II

The second study was more comprehensive and evaluated health club members taking Capoeira Workout classes during an 8-week period and revealed significant improvement in body shape [compartment girth, total mass] and composition [lean mass]. The data was conclusive for positive changes and the viability of the test protocol.

On average Capoeira Workout participants:

• Reduced circumferences 3-5% in 8 weeks (girth measurements).
• Reduced body fat over 10% in 8 weeks (skf measurements and bio-impedance).

The difference between circumferences and body composition shows a tendency to increase lean mass: metabolically active tissue that continues to contribute to weight loss and positive change.


Upper Arm




2x class/wk

0.15in (1.5%)

1.0in (3.5%)

1.7in (4%)

3x class/wk

0.55in (5%)

1.1in (3.5%)

1.9in (5%)


2x class/wk

3.0mm (16%)

3.0mm (17%)


3x class/wk

3.7mm (16%)

1.2mm (9%)



Capoeira Workout Study
Phase III

Ongoing study of Capoeira Workout classes with additional tests for strength with standardized step test (heart rate recovery), functional strength test (field tests), and static force dynamometry (upper- and lower-body) using standardized anthropometric testing protocol.

Mestra Edna Lima ...

... Capoeira in the University 1990-2007


Sarah Lawrence College 1990-1991

Sarah Lawrence is a coeducational liberal arts college, renowned for its rigorous academic and creative standards. The College's 1,300 undergraduate students and over 300 graduate students come from nearly every state and from 27 countries.

Rutgers University 1990-1991

With more than 50,000 students in New Jersey, Rutgers is one of the nation's major state universities. A key part of Rutgers' mission is to give something back to the community and to the state through and scientific, cultural and sports camps.

Hunter College CUNY 1994-1997

Hunter College is the largest college in the City University of New York. Currently 21,000 students attend the College in more than 170 different programs of study.
Hunter is an urban leader in educating women, providing opportunities for minorities, and advancing educational development.

Mestranda Lima introduces Capoeira to Hunter College students in 1994

Mestranda Lima opens a roda at Hunter College Student Center

Hunter students come from 70 countries to study in NYC

Long Island University 2002-2006

Long Island University/Brooklyn is one of the fastest growing, most ethnically-diverse college campuses in New York City.
LIU offers over 195 academic programs to nearly 11,000 students. LIU's Friends World Program operates overseas centers in China, Japan, Costa Rica and India.

Mestranda Lima presents Capoeira at the LIU Dance Faculty Concert in 2007

Capoeira class in the majestic Paramount Theater at LIU

LIU students from Dance and Sports Sciences study ABADÁ Capoeira

LIU students take Capoeira classes in the Student Center

LIU students discover
Capoeira's joy of movement