Video by Paloma Giustizieri and John Mkhize. Pictures by Marco Longari and Phill Magakoe
A dozen South Africans dressed as mermaids and mermen frolic in a Johannesburg pool, mimicking the movement of the mystical sea creatures.
Mermaiding is a fast-growing sport worldwide, and now South Africa has its own school to teach it — the “Merschool”.
Before diving in, students each slip on a brightly coloured fabric tail ending in a monofin.
The swimmers are black and white, from 13 years old to in their forties. They include a schoolteacher, a yoga instructor and even an accountant.
“It’s lots of fun,” says mermaiding instructor Izelle Nair.
“It’s for fitness, it’s for fun,