Dubai It makes for a stunning visual alright. But suspending oneslf nearly 15 feet in the air with the help of just a piece of fabric without any safety harness or net can send shivers up the spine of many.
But not these seasoned artists in ‘aerial silks’ at the Pole Fit Dubai Aerial Arts Academy, Dubai Marina. Even as they dangle from the smooth, shiny, shimmering silk rope they look every bit comfortable under their skin as they execute a series of gravity-defying acrobatic moves we normally associate with Cirque du Soleil artists.
“Aerial silks is one of the most romantic of the circus arts where performers climb, slide, do a number of formations in the air by dangling from a rope with effortless grace. Our classes start with a warm-up session followed by strength-building routines, aerial conditioning, an introduction to climbs, wraps and basic figures, and a cool-down later. It is a fantastic work-out that helps build body strength and flexibility,” explains Vlada Zhizhchenko, 29, co-owner and lead instructor at the Pole Fit Dubai Aerial Arts Academy.
Contrary to what people think, Zhizhchenko says this circus art, which has become a popular fitness regime worldwide, is there for all to learn. “As long as people don’t have a medical condition that prevents them from doing strenuous work-outs, everyone is welcome to join our class. People sometimes ask me if they should lose weight before signing up for an aerial silk course. I say no as it is for all levels. Once people get regular in the course, their body automatically gets fit and flexible.”
Typically aerial silks involves foot lock, hip lock, drops, butterfly, flamingo and Arabesque forms and shapes. Over 50 students are currently enrolled at the institute for this course.
Iranian student Mina Ghaseni, 19, has just completed an advanced course. She is now looking to take up competitions and events that show case aerial silk art. “What I love about aerial silks is that it captures a woman’s beauty and strength very well. It is a fitness regime, but one where a woman is required to use her full strength and yet show a lot of grace in her moves. And when you do it right, it looks stunning. For me personally, aerial silks has been a huge confidence booster. It also helped me overcome my fear of heights.”
Each class at the academy has a capacity of 10 students. The cost of one session is Dh100 but one can have 10 sessions for Dh900. A monthly package of two times a week is Dh700.
For more information contact: 800-POLE FIT / 04-5516911, www.polefitdubai.com.