Here’s to March: filled with progress, positivity,
and plenty of sweat

Dear Maties Gym member

Welcome to another exciting edition of our newsletter. As the days start to grow shorter and autumn beckons, we’re thrilled to bring you the latest updates, events, and inspiration to keep you motivated on your fitness journey. Whether you’re a seasoned gym-goer or just starting, this month’s newsletter has something for everyone.
At Maties Gym, we’re not just a health and fitness facility—we’re a community dedicated to helping each other thrive.  We believe that together, we can achieve more than we could alone.

So, let’s lace up our sneakers, grab our water bottles, and dive into another month of growth, strength, and wellness.

Thank you for being part of the Maties Gym community.  Here’s to a March filled with progress, positivity, and plenty of sweat!

Cape Epic – The Untamed African Mountain Bike Race

With the 2024 Cape Epic done and dusted, and choosing our majestic Coetzenburg sports fields for the finish, we say a huge thank you to international athletes such as Mona Mitterwallner (left) and Nino Schurter (right) who chose Maties Gymnasium as their preparation destination. Mona and her South African partner Candice Lill (Canondale Factory Racing) came second in the Aramex Women’s Category. Nino and his partner Sebastian Fini (World Bicycle Relief) came second in the Men’s General Category after South African Matt Beers and his partners Howard Grotts (Toyotal-Specialized-NinetyOne). We wish you all the best for the upcoming 2024 season.

Meet our latest addition to Maties Gym:

Azrea Sylvester

We’re excited to introduce the latest addition to our amazing Fitness team at Maties Gymnasium.  Say hello to Azrea Sylvester, who will ensure that all your fitness needs and questions are taken care of.  If you want to know more about her, catch her on the gym floor or you can view her profile and meet the rest of the team on our website here

Facilities update:

Boasting our brand-new ladies changeroom

Maties Gym’s long-awaited ladies’ changeroom refurbishment has been completed, and the result is breathtaking. We thank you for your patience during this time; we’re sure it was worth the wait.

We’ve also installed new lockers for valuable items outside the men’s and ladies’ changing rooms. Please bring your padlock and ensure your belongings are always locked away securely.

Meet our member of the month:
the 82-year old Willem Sirgel

Meet Willem Sirgel, the living legend of Maties Gymnasium.

At 82, Willem has been pumping iron at Maties Gym for four decades since its opening. Despite his age, Willem proves age is just a number, urging us to “never judge an old man’s capabilities”.

For him, Maties Gym isn’t just about staying fit. It’s also a vibrant social hub where he’s forged bonds with people of all backgrounds. From young students to seasoned lifters to pensioners, Willem shows it’s never too late to start your fitness journey.

His fondest memory? “Showing the Stellies students what pensioners can do!”

Let’s channel Willem’s energy and smash our goals today.

Want to be our next Member of the Month and stand a chance to win a prize?  Chat with Jolene at Reception or connect on Instagram to share your gym journey with us.  Get featured on Maties Gymnasium’s Instagram for Monday Motivation, Workout Wednesday, or Fun Fact Friday.  Every story counts, we want to hear yours.

You can now change your banking details online

You can now change your banking details from the comfort of your home.

To change your banking details:

  • Go to Maties Gymnasium website at
  • Select “existing member”
  • Go to My Login at the top right of the page. Enter your ID number as your username and the password you selected at initial registration.
  • Select “My Account” on the tab at the top of the page
  • Click on “Debit Order Contracts”
  • Click on “Change of Bank Details”
  • Enter your new information and click save
  • That’s it; your banking details will be updated.

The difference water can make

Regulates body temperature: Water helps regulate your body temperature through sweating and respiration. Adequate hydration prevents overheating during physical activity and helps maintain a stable internal temperature.

Water supports bodily functions: Water is essential for various bodily functions, including digestion, absorption of nutrients, circulation, and excretion of waste products. It helps transport nutrients and oxygen to cells, lubricates joints, and cushions organs and tissues.

Promotes cardiovascular health: proper hydration supports a healthy cardiovascular system by maintaining adequate blood volume and facilitating the heart’s pumping action. Dehydration can strain the heart and increase heart rate and blood pressure.

Boosts cognitive function: Drinking enough water is essential for optimal brain function. Even mild dehydration can impair cognitive performance, including concentration, alertness, and short-term memory. Staying hydrated can help maintain mental clarity and focus.

Supports kidney function: The kidneys rely on adequate water intake to filter waste products and toxins from the blood and excrete them in urine.
Insufficient hydration can lead to kidney stones, urinary tract infections, and other kidney-related issues.

Aids in weight management: Drinking water before meals can help reduce appetite and calorie intake, promoting weight loss or maintenance. Water has zero calories and can help fill you up, preventing overeating.

Improves physical performance: Hydration is crucial to physical performance and endurance. Even mild dehydration can impair exercise performance, leading to fatigue, decreased strength, and reduced endurance. Proper hydration before, during, and after exercise can help maintain optimal performance and recovery.

Supports skin health: Adequate hydration is essential for maintaining healthy skin. Water helps keep the skin hydrated, plump, and elastic, reducing the risk of dryness, wrinkles, and other skin problems.

Overall, drinking enough water is essential for maintaining optimal health and functioning of the body. It’s important to stay hydrated throughout the day by drinking water regularly, especially during hot weather, physical activity, or when experiencing illness or dehydration.

Nutrition corner:
Celebrate Easter with authentic Malay-style pickled fish

Why pickled fish over Easter?


On Food24 website Tessa Purdon writes:

“Pickled fish (‘ingelegde vis’ in Afrikaans) has deep historical roots and eating it on Good Friday is a cherished and revered tradition in the Cape that dates back centuries. It’s a simple dish that tells a unique story of social customs and çooking practices that have been passed down through generations.”

“Some say the recipe was originally created by Cape Malay fishermen in an effort to preserve the catch for as long as possible (bear in mind there was no such thing as refrigeration back then). And many believe that one shouldn’t do any cooking on Good Friday and no stove should be turned on, which meant you would make the fish on the Wednesday before the Easter weekend and there would be enough to last until Monday”.

Do you want to try and make your own?
Then you will need the following ingredients:

2 tablespoons olive oil
5 large onions, cut into rings
Fresh ginger, grated
4 cloves crushed garlic
5 teaspoons mild curry powder
2 teaspoons turmeric
6 bay leaves
1 teaspoon allspice powder
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 litre white vinegar
300-gram sugar
2kg kingklip or deep-sea hake cut into portions
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Flour, for dusting

Preparation instructions:

In a stainless-steel saucepan over a medium heat, add 1 tablespoon oil and, when hot, gently sauté the onion until translucent.  Add the ginger, garlic and spices and fry gently for a few minutes, or until fragrant.

Add the vinegar and sugar and stir until the sugar has dissolved.  Simmer for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, dust the fish with the seasoned flour and pat off any excess.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a heavy-based frying pan and, when hot, fry the fish until golden but still succulent.

Place a layer of fish in a deep sterile glass or non-metallic container and pour a little of the hot sauce over it, to cover.  Continue layering fish and sauce until all the fish is covered. Cool, then chill until ready to serve.

Support our community projects

We would like to express our sincere gratitude and appreciation for your generous donations to our ongoing community projects. Our current project is donating 300 pairs of white and grey school socks to help keep our kids’ feet warm and dry during the upcoming winter season. Your contribution will have a significant impact on our efforts. Donations can be dropped off at Reception.

With colder months approaching, we will collect and donate blankets and clothing for the Stellenbosch night shelter starting in April.

Please know that Maties Gym will put your donation to good use, and we will ensure that it is used responsibly for the intended purpose.

Stay in touch

Are you keeping up with our latest news, exercise tips, launches of new Group Exercise programs and so much more?  Give us a like and follow us on our Instagram and Facebook pages below:

Or join our Maties Gymnasium TikTok channel here

Online registration and sign-up

Join or renew online and skip the queues!  Follow the link below to renew your membership or join us for the first time (we do not charge any joining fees)

Stellenbosch – click here or scan the QR code on the right:

Tygerberg – click here

Discount will apply for the following, only once registered at the University:

SU students: 15% discount (which you will automatically qualify for once you have registered for your studies in 2024)
SU staff: 25% discount.
Maties Sport club members:20% discount.

News from our Tygerberg facility

As this is a holy time for many, we wish our Muslim members well over the month of Ramadan and our Christian members well over Easter.

We are launching a Hip-Hop class in March, which will take place on Thursdays at 17:00. Come and have some fun with us!  Please also take the time to look at our other class offerings on our social media pages.

Our rowing challenge is ongoing, and the winner will be announced at the end of the month. Look out for the next one, starting in April.
There will be an Open Day on the 17th of April for non-members to come and enjoy a day on us.

Please bring your ID along for registration.

Thank you for being a part of the Maties Gym community.  Let’s make 2024 the healthiest and happiest year yet!  If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to reach out to our friendly staff.

Stay fit and healthy!
The Maties Gym team

We value you feedback

Your opinion counts! We value your feedback and are continuously working to improve your gym experience. Share your thoughts, suggestions, or success stories with us on or drop us a DM on @matiesgymnasium where our friendly staff are ready to assist.