The people at Pole Fit Dubai will tell you that its aerial silks classes are suitable for beginners. They definitely are. Just don’t be under any illusion that they’re easy for beginners. To paraphrase the instructor, you may expect an hour of flying through the sky like a fairy, but it is seriously hard work to get to that stage.
The hard work begins the moment we walk in, with stretches and warm-ups to a rock and pop soundtrack. The teacher demands we squeeze muscles we previously had no idea where to locate, and by the end of the most creative round of sit-ups imaginable, we’ve already tested all core muscles to an unexpected level. The instructor is essentially running two lessons side by side. One is for a very advanced pupil who has already been taking classes for seven to eight months. She has a routine to go through and practise, but the instructor still keeps an eye on her progress, calling out, “You look like you are dying! Where is the drama?!”
Meanwhile, three other complete beginners in the room are getting their own lesson, and are all (to varying degrees) struggling to climb to the top of the silks. Our first (and to be honest, only) challenge of the day. If you think it sounds simple, you’re wrong. It’s not just like hauling yourself up, school gym class-style. It involves a fairly complex system of pulling yourself up and wrapping your feet around the silks, and repeating, until you finally reach the top.
With all the upper body strength required and the strain on your hands (that will get very sweaty, no matter how much sticky resin you rub into
them), it is an exhausting effort. We only make it halfway up. One of the other beginners triumphantly makes it to the top. The other two continue to grunt and add more resin in a desperate attempt to conquer the silk. But as tough as it is, we leave with a desire to return, improve, and eventually fly like a fairy.
Dhs100 (one session), Dhs900 (ten sessions), Dhs700 (twice weekly for one month), Dhs900 (three times weekly for one month). Marina Sail Tower, Dubai Marina, www.polefitdubai.com (800 765 3348).