Montrealers are flipping for a new activity that combines a common childhood fantasy and fitness.

Marielle Chartier-Henault has opened the Aquamermaid Academy in Montreal, where people of all ages can learn to become a mermaid.

"I'm teaching people how to use the fin, the monofin actually, and we start with the dolphin kick,” said Chartier-Henault. β€œIt's a mix of synchronized swimming, also free diving and also just regular swimming.”

As a part of Chartier-Henault's classes, participants use a realistic mermaid tail, with a plastic monofin at the end of a tight spandex skirt. The experience allows people, especially children, to fulfill their dreams of becoming a mermaid.

"I feel most of the little girls just dream about being a little mermaid," Chartier-Henault told CTV News Channel.

But it's not just children taking the plunge into Chartier-Henault's classes. Adults are also signing up for the workout. 

"It's a really wide client base," she said. "In my classes, I have a lot of people, like adults, that just want something different from the gym. They want a good core muscle workout and some cardio. And this is how I can mix fun and a workout."

During Chartier-Henault's classes, Mermaids-in-training learn everything from the basic dolphin kick to choreography. Chartier-Henault also offers merman classes for men who are interested in the diving aspect.

Chartier-Henault, a self-professed professional mermaid, became passionate about mermaids after a friend of hers asked her to do an underwater photo shoot with a mermaid tail they found. 

"Once I put the tail on, I felt like, 'Oh, I'm really a mermaid. That's a dream come true.'"

Having heard about a mermaid school in Germany, Chartier-Henault decided she wanted to open her own academy in Montreal.

"It's more than just a swimming school. For me, it was really a dream. "