We all remember the craze of when Salsa lessons gripped cosmopolitan cities by storm which swiftly followed into pole dancing fitness lessons. I recently had the pleasure of enjoying a 6 week pole dancing fitness course with a girlfriend. We deliberated about it for some time and then simply decided ‘what the hell’ let’s jump right in and see what the craze is all about.
The emphasis of the classes is to move your body in ways never experienced, explore femininity, sensuality and appreciate the gruelling intensity of all the muscles needed in order to perform lithe manoeuvres around the much spoken of ‘pole’.
The course takes place over a 6 week period and caters for all ages and fitness levels. During the classes you will learn the basics of pole dancing which includes simple dance links, spins, poses and tricks. During this time you tone and strengthen muscles you never knew you had. If one trained more intensely I am certain that you could watch your body transform into the goddess you’ve always dreamed to be. The lessons are fun, full of giggles, screams of laughter and a great opportunity to make new friends along with testing the boundaries of inhibitions.
Dance4Fitness has a dedicated pole dancing studio fitted with Industry Standard Dance Poles so everyone has their own pole during the pole dancing lessons. There are 12 pole dancing phases, each phase is 6 weeks, once a week and when you feel as though you have mastered certain moves you then move onto the next. Everything is done at your own pace and with pleasure. The teachers are great fun and encourage you every step of the way. All pole dancing lessons last for one hour and include a warm up and stretching routine to ensure that your muscles stay in the best condition they can and to help you increase your flexibility.
I was super impressed with the studio in Claremont. The dance studios are within a large, newly renovated house in Claremont. The property has been revamped beautifully to include sparkling varnished floors, freshly painted walls, full wall length mirrors and everything is immaculately maintained to the highest of standards.
I remember my first lesson clearly….. I was late as usual and snuck into the back of the class whilst the instructor was giving a demonstration of what we would be able to do after the 6 week course. I broke into a sweat instantly as I watched her ‘work the pole’ with ease, moving, manipulating the pole, sliding, turning, slipping, inverting, slinking and performing each twist and movement with precision, control and total perfection. I have always been awestruck about the litheness of pole dancers and how they can position their bodies in ways that 98% of us will never be able to accomplish. So many ladies judge and jeer at these pole dancing goddesses but deep down we all want to be able to master these moves with the same grace as accomplished by so few. I was more impressed to find out that our instructor was previously a trapeze artist in a circus compounding the knowledge that pole dancing is a sport for athletes. Pole dancing is also a sport currently being considered to be included as part of the Olympics – now that’s impressive.
We started our class and learnt the basic steps. Some of the tricks took what felt like hours of practice (given that we only had one hour) and often never worked. We tried over and over again, falling all over the place in fits of laughter and sometimes completing them with little or no resemblance of how the technique should be executed. At times our instructor referred to us as ‘rugby players’ and mostly we felt like cumbersome orang-utans trying to look graceful and lithe like the Russian beauties we see in erotica!
As the weeks progressed our techniques improved, we completed more and more of the choreographed routine aiming for a finale in the 6th week. We were encouraged to wear heels so as to feel more feminine whilst raunching around the poles and even sexy exercise clothes if we really wanted to ‘get into the groove’. The biggest observation I made having completed the course was how totally and utterly disconnected I felt from so many of my chore muscles. Running, swimming and cycling hardly increases elasticity or suppleness. I realised that I have spent my adult life to date, focussing on work and career skills only, where other areas of my life such as hobbies, interests and passions had taken a complete and total position of ‘none-importance’. I completed the course with new found resilience that I would try as many new experiences as possible and to focus more on balancing skills of pleasure with that of career advancement. They are of equal importance.
The atmosphere of the classes was great. The girls were friendly and those who stood in the front were more focussed on making a career from 6 hours of lessons than us rebels standing at the back. I didn’t have the heart to mention that the night goddesses who are the envy of many – train for 6 gruelling hours per day or more and then continue into the night as they provide a service to their audiences. The sound track used as background for the choreography was Parisian, sexy, raunchy, sassy, slow and had a slightly crackling as though the sound was emanating from a gramophone. Soon we knew the sequence well, to the extent that you could close your eyes, perform the series of movements, relax and listen to the singer as her throaty voice sang in French. One could almost visualise and sense performing on stage in an upmarket dinner club somewhere in the old Parisian quarter.
After our final class we were given the option to perform for our husbands, boyfriends or partners. Most of us thought this ridiculous and decided to bail probably because we’d spend most of the routine in fits of nervous school yard laughter without creating the impact we’d spent the past 6 weeks preparing for. The greatest story was to hear that one of the students performed her routine to her husband who brought with him his mother (her mother in-law) – now who do you think is a still a mummy’s boy? All in all it was a great experience and something I will remember for a long time. I have always had the greatest respect for these athletes who are so often unfairly judged. These pole dancing sisters deserve ‘big-up’ and total respect where discipline and endurance is concerned. They have the most powerful core muscles which is where most of the movements are powered from.
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Other great dance lessons to consider would be Salsa Dancing, Ballroom Dancing and Tango Dancing.
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Written by Odette Butcher, Chief Experience Officer, Celestial Gift Experiences