Be a Cool Pole Cat NOT Pole Catty! Retract those claws ladies! (And Gents)

NoPoleDancingSign

So I’m writing this Post today in light of recent unpleasant goings on in the online Pole Community which seems to have come to some sort of head at the moment. I have used extracts of my book in this as this is actually a topic I wrote about last year, so to be honest this negativity is by no means a new phenomenon, which makes me very sad, but some of the angles seemed to have changed and therefore maybe it needs to be addressed?
The primary arguments that seem to be surfacing are rows over names and teaching techniques, but the big Issues seem to be health and safety related.
Such issues are not cut and dried when it comes to solutions. There is much to pole dancing that simply cannot be put in a conventional straitjacket. This (our) calling is all about pushing boundaries, inventiveness and initiative. Matters pertaining to health and safety are, although necessary, sometimes felt to be restrictive to all the essential elements of pole dancing.
Some things are common sense and you would think one doesn’t need a formal Health and Safety instruction to apply them. There are certain things I do and don’t agree with. For example, I do not feel the need to have thick crash mats in place ALL the time but some studios insist on their being in place. YES, when you are starting on a demanding new move or inverts for the first time it is sensible to have a mat in place and a spotter attending. My view however, is that later as you progress the use of a mat brings with it a dependence that is restrictive to performance and gives a false sense of security.
A perfect example was when one of my students, who had been a performing a move perfectly well in my studio for years, went to another studio abroad. There, they would not allow her to train without the mat. The outcome was that she knocked and twisted her ankle on the edge of the mat when descending. As a direct consequence she was out of action for weeks. The road to ankle hell is paved with overzealous Health and Safety good intentions. Please don’t misunderstand my comments, the need for safe teaching and training is paramount when working with other peoples bodies, recently there has been a rise of Pole related muscular problems due to incorrect teaching techniques and grossly insufficient warming up. I have found areas such as the shoulders are particularly vulnerable. There is a very good ‘#Train safe, #pole safe, #teach safe’ campaign that’s well worth a look up.
I just feel that sometimes a ‘little bit of knowledge can be a dangerous thing’ if you’re doing things just out of repetition and imitation rather than understanding the real ‘Why? Or how?’ behind it.
Back in the online world I see people starting to feel fed up, it reached the point where I didn’t want to comment on some posts in forums or groups for fear of my reputation being tarnished by the ignorance of armchair critics. (I see many people saying this now, but this is how I felt over a year ago) Some of the girls and guys were being unjustly shot down over minor subjects or errors, whereas on the other side, well know Instructors were being severely attacked for trying to administer help and advice to fellow polers. This was no longer the family-friendly pole community I had nurtured and grown up with. I was disheartened by this. There were horror stories of ill run pole classes causing untold problems to students and damaging the hard work us primary polers had been striving to achieve.
The bitchiness reached an all time high, even peoples personal comments on their own pages were being pulled back into the Facebook groups. (I’ve seen it more in one particular group than the others) The newbie or self taught polers should take the advice from the more advanced members, (I was both of these at one point) I know criticism is hard to accept sometimes, you’re excited and want to show this and get a bit of acknowledgement & acceptance within the community, but quietly take the advice, it will help in the long run. DON’T get disheartened but DO seek professional guidence in the form of a few studio classes or official online classes (i’ve heard studio Veena to be highly recommended). However, Instructors need to realise that sometimes their well meant help and advice will not be taken gratefully. Think of it like a child.. many times a mother will say, ‘Don’t do that, you’ll fall!’ The child will, 9 times out of 10, keep doing it until they eventually fall. Sometimes they just need to learn and find things out for themselves, however frustrating it may seem. Also don’t criticize too much on the small things, their splits might not be perfect yet, but I’m sure they are already working on it, you were there one day too. Again Like children, if you are constantly criticizing the small stuff if will have less impact when you try and make a comment about something really important, and try and back it up with encouragement. Key rule when giving feedback. (Which I have seen many of you do). Part of the problem is wording, we have a need to express ourselves and be heard, but when we read a phrase or sentence you can’t hear how it’s said so can sometimes be misconstrued or taken totally out of context as to how it was meant. Please note I am talking generally here with this post, there are lots of different situations, I can’t say in each situation who was wrong and who was right, but at the end of the day, it shouldn’t be about that… it should be about us working together doing the thing we love the most. However, realistically speaking personalities still do, and always will, clash. Just because we have a common passion doesn’t mean we all have to be best friends but at least try and be polite human beings. On a plus note… at least we’ve moved away from the ‘Sporties V’s Sexy’s’ argument (Wink)…. Peace out people!

Love Pole, Keep Spinning!

And… If you haven’t already ordered the full book… just Click below! (Available on Kindle and Paperback)

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New year, new reasons to try Pole classes… step outside the box!

I hope the majority of those reading this book will already be seriously interested in pole dancing, or at least be contemplating taking this dance-fitness lifestyle up. It could be that many if not most readers are already involved in this fascinating fun-filled and challenging modus vivendi.
There are so many advantages to taking up pole dancing. Use it or lose it, the human body needs to be agile for all its working parts to function in harmony. If you have a weight problem you will find your weight quickly drops as surplus weight is averse to pole dancing. Actually, I say ‘weight’, generally it’s more of a ‘body mass reduction’ you will see, as you’re body changes shape, less fat, more muscle. These advantages boost self-confidence. You will not become an egotist but you will find that your self esteem hits new peaks. Activities that were once an effort become far less demanding. You not only feel better, you look better. This new you radiates outwards and impress others. When going about your everyday tasks you will find you are better physically and mentally balanced. As well as a variety of other side effect benefits, Increased flexibility, strength, stamina, and generally a better, more lean and defined body shape.
You will be far better tuned to your immediate environment. The new you earns new friends, keep old ones, and makes life far more exhilarating.
Moving on, I want to explain the effects pole dancing or more importantly teaching the routine has had on me. Cast your minds back to when you first learnt to invert. Otherwise, picture the move that you have been working towards perfection for ages. Out of the blue you get it just the way you dreamed of doing. This is the ultimate ‘I DID IT!’ moment. It is then you get the tingling sensation, the adrenalin rush that creates that unmissable buzz. You experience a sense of achievement that is so memorable that it never totally drains away.
Let me assure you, your ecstasy radiates through me too and I share it because I have been there and I know exactly how you feel. I feel it because it is my achievement too. The delight on my students’ faces at the moment of truth is priceless to me. Given a little time I also get to see the transformation that comes over people. I get a rush too from witnessing success that I have partnered. This is just another reason why I love doing what I do and I’m sure other instructors can back me up on this. Over the years I have seen, felt and experienced the changes in students as they go from novice to blazing glory. I have seen students lose weight, watched as the body changes to a glowing radiance. I am often approached by shy, reserved girls who would never say or do anything to offend.
I have celebrated each girl’s restoration of her self-esteem. Such is the renewed confidence they have in themselves that, instead of being fearful or apprehensive about public displays of their skill, they welcome the opportunity to show off. Friendships to make and keep are much easier and much more natural. You don’t make a friend, you become one. The pole dancing lifestyle changes people for the better. I have heard and read on the various social media groups so many inspirational pole tales, how this vertical metal bar has helped girls out of depressions, gotten them over phobias, even helped fight battles against eating disorders. Other stories, such as that of Urban Poleist Danny Charge, who I will mention again later, where exercising on the pole acted as physiotherapy after a severe climbing accident left him near paralysed. If you have any such tales, feel free to post them to me, I always love to hear about them.
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Hello and welcome to the best Pole book ever!

Whenever I mention the phrase ‘Pole Dancing’ in most people’s minds it automatically conjours up images of naked girls in seedy nightclubs.
But the reality is so much different to what people think. I have been running studios teaching Pole fitness around the world for 8years now and been in the industry for over 15 and it has many different sides that so unseen by so many out there, hence why this year I finally published my very own book, ‘So I Hear you’re a Pole dancer?’. Part biography, part Pole handbook. In it I cover everything from my Leeds roots, to Life on the Spanish island of Tenerife, and the growth of the Pole industry. I also cover a lot of topics such as, Men in Pole, Children in Pole, the arguments between Pole sports and Pole dance, Poling in Pregnancy, Plus much more. The ups and the downs so to speak.
When I first started to take note of my experiences and achievements I had in mind to do a blog, people continuously asked me how I got into the industry. In time I found I had more than enough material to write a full book and so with the help of my amazing editor, I decided to take the plunge. It’s been available for purchase since the end of November and so far the response has been overwhelming. The feedback and reviews have been great and it’s currently in the top 10% selling books on Amazon. Although my original target market were people within the industry I have been surprised with the response from the general public. Even my boyfriend’s grandmother raved about it after she read it.
I hope that it will help to educate people about this amazing art form that is still so misunderstood and also to show that anything is possible if you want it enough. Everyone is capable of so much more than they realise.
‘So I hear you’re a Pole dancer?’ Is available as a paperback or kindle download from any Amazon site, and be sure to find me on any of the usual social media to let me know what you thought of it.

For Uk Orders- http://www.amazon.co.uk/So-hear-youre-Pole-Dancer/dp/1502859424/

For US Orders –  http://www.amazon.com/So-hear-youre-Pole-Dancer/dp/1502859424/