We have all been there. Determined to reach our #fitnessgoals of minimal body fat and find our ever-elusive thigh gap, we embark on a fitness journey with gusto. Three months into the routine, we are bored and no longer satisfied with the mundane grind of klapping gym with our mchana. Thankfully, there are alternatives that will get you back into your lycras!

One such fitness course that caught our eye is offered at The Art of Synergy, a studio launched by performer couple Orlando and Natalie Roberts Rivieros Vargas to develop the aerial arts (silks, trapeze and other circus disciplines) of professional performers and make performance arts accessible to everyone looking for an alternative fitness routine.

Fusing together their love of the aerial arts and fitness, they have developed a rigorous training programme that marries the mystical yet limber art of circus performing with an exercise regime that works on building your strength. It is based on the four elements of aerial, strength, flexibility and handstands.

In that hour of exercise, we remembered what it’s like to have fun again!

Classes on offer;


The aerial class training is focused on increasing fitness levels enough for you to be able to lift your own body weight in the air using either silks, lyra, trapeze, rope or duo straps.


In this class, handstands, cartwheels, dynamic movements and conditioning are part of the fun as you work towards more advanced acrobatic movements such as handsprings and somersaults.


If you have always been in awe of Isaac Hou on a Cyr wheel (large ring), then this is the class for you. Here you will learn general wheel manipulation, and how to mount the wheel and find its centre axis… hopefully with balance and grace.


With much toppling over and bruising, we all attempted to perfect the handstand as kids. Now you can pay a professional to teach you to master one that would make your 10-year-old self proud! This class is for people looking to develop body awareness and extreme balance endurance.

Why we love it

Many fitness addicts know the temptation of mastering an exercise routine and repeating it ad nauseum. However, what most don’t know is that without variation or adding some resistance, those exercises become ineffective and result in your body transformation reaching a plateau. Incorporating something as foreign as circus performance skills will shock your body as it learns new moves and different twists. This not only prevents the overuse – and potential damage – of certain muscles, but develops new ones. This helps break what is called the “weight-loss plateau”.

We fell in love because we channelled our inner child and learnt to do things we thought would be impossible. In that hour of exercise, we remembered what it’s like to have fun again!

Because the studio focuses on adults, there is no required level of fitness. You can literally switch off Netflix, roll from your couch as you brush the cookie crumbs off your tracksuit and go to a class.

It’s never too late to start!