We all know that pole dancing is good for fitness, strength building Anything that gets lazy couch potatoes like myself b.p. (before pole), off the sofa and up doing something aerobic has got to have something about it. I started after I had my little girl, in 1999. As the only exercise I found palatable was dancing, I had been running salsa, samba, African & other dance classes for some years. However, I knew none of these were going to get rid of my pregnancy acquired bingo wings. I investigated martial arts classes, but I only wanted to throw my limbs about, not spar, or be caused any damage! I spotted a pole dancer on TV, spinning upside down, (unusual in those days, as for years after I started the classes, the only tv representation of the pole was the standing next to, wiggling a bit variety.)
and knew this was what I wanted try. On searching the web, I discovered that in America, there were pole classes going on all over the place, and knew that other women would want to do it here, too, so I set up a class. I am now 44, and consider it to be the best bit of work I ever did. I have now been teaching for over 8 years.
If you can’t abide the gym and normal forms of exercise, pole dancing is such fun you don’t notice how much energy you are using, or how many muscles you are working. Strength builds rapidly class on class, enabling you to achieve moves you wouldn’t have dreamed possible before you started. I noticed a difference in the tone of my arms after just four weekly classes. Every other exercise machine I have had has ended up as a washing drier, if you are lucky enough to have a pole at home, as many people now do, getting on it is a fun treat, not a chore.10 minutes a day will give you a considerable workout, and you will see a dramatic improvement in your tone and fitness.
The benefits are not only physical. Improved grace and posture make you appear more confident to others, which in turn makes you feel more confident in your everyday life, and lets your self esteem shine through. I recommend individual classes for quick progression, and acquiring moves, but I encourage ladies to come to group classes because it is good for your self confidence to be told by others at class that your move looks good. After a while you have to start believing the compliments, and that is when a magical thing happens and the pole dancer emerges. I generally hate photographs of myself, but always love my pole photos, they look very elegant and poised- this is bound to rub off on the way that you feel about yourself.
You’ll notice that I haven’t mentioned the sexy side of pole dancing. The pole was used for martial arts training and circus displays centuries before lap dancing clubs were invented. You don’t get paid for pole dancing in lap clubs, only for private dances, ie close quarters stripping. Many lap dancers are fairly poor pole dancers, as it is the nudity which is being paid for, not the pole skills. Dirty dancing is an option, not a requirement, and lap style pole is a style, not the only one. Pole dancing is beautiful and sensuous in the same way as other dance forms, trapeze & circus skills are. Whatever your style you can adapt it to a pole- I do a mean salsa pole, and have jazzpolers, roller polers, street polers,ballet polers, and yoga polers in the Zebraqueen clan. Men obviously think that pole dancing exists just to entertain them and fail to grasp how empowering and beneficial it can be for the pole dancer who is confident with her pole skills, with or without an audience! It’s great party piece to have up your sleeve, anyway. Use as you see fit!
As for the nudity, you do need bare, clean skin to grip, so some bare skin is essential, but you can also dance fully clothed with the aid of grippy leggings, (sticky pants) which I invented partly for ladies not wanting to bare their legs, but also because they give added grip for hands free moves, and take away the burn!
Pole dancing is not just for the young, the pretty, the skinny, the big boobed etc. We have all shapes and sizes in our classes. Although it may be more difficult to start with if you are heavier, the fact is that you are lifting more weight than the skinny ones, which will get you stronger, quicker. When you start pole dancing, you notice strength building first in your shoulders and arms (and legs, particularly with spinning poles), then back, stomach and core muscles.
After a few sessions, you will master the sit and hang back inversion (upside down move).Now this is where things get interesting!
I have been looking into the benefits of inversion, as I figured there must be some benefit if they are selling inversion tables for simply hanging upside down – and there are! Before I started pole dancing, I regularly visited the osteopath with backache, but not any more! I thought it was because I was fitter and stronger, but it may also be because I invert regularly….
This is a list of benefits taken from inversion therapy websites:
- Reduce back pain
- Provide care and feeding for discs
- Achieve functional fitness
- Train core muscle groups without loading the spine
- Recover from high impact workouts
- Reduce pain in overworked muscles
- Strengthen ligaments
- Relieve stress
- Stimulate circulation
- Train for balance and orientation
Helps to Age Gracefully!!!:) Hanging upside down improves blood flow to the face and brain – keeps you younger looking & cleverer!
All that, while you’re doing something fun!
If you want to pole dance, you can, whatever your fitness level. Starting with easy moves, you will soon build your strength and confidence- give it a go, you may just amaze yourself! I did.