Beginner pole dancing – everything you wanted to know but were afraid to ask

Are you curious about pole dancing? Think you may be catching the pole bug? Perhaps you’ve seen it advertised on your local gym, watched some videos on YouTube or have seen Alesia Vazmitsel on Britain’s Got Talent. You’re itching to have a go – but where do you begin?

Well firstly, welcome to my world! I’ve been pole dancing for almost 9 years now, and I’m still totally addicted to the sport (see how I call it a sport? More on that later). As well as being great fun, pole dancing is an addiction that helps me lose weight, feel great and confident, and gives me some awesome party tricks up my sleeve too. What’s not to love?

Anyone can pole dance

  • Myth: Pole dancing just for strippers
  • Fact: Pole dancing is huge

It’s been many years since pole dancing was confined to ‘gentlemen’s’ clubs. Pole dancing is a fast-growing sport that has featured in major magazines and news publications – many more people now pole dance for fitness and fun than have ever performed in strip clubs.

In fact, last year thousands of people signed a petition for pole dancing to be part of the Olympics. Professional ballerinas are taking it up to help with their core strength and training, male break dancers are integrating poles into dance competitions and kids are being encouraged to scale the pole to help reduce obesity.

Step by step (or should that be grip by grip?) pole dancing has carved its own credible niche. It’s fun, challenging and unique – so grab your pole and join the revolution!

Pole dancing is a great workout

  • Myth: You don’t work up much of a sweat pole dancing
  • Fact: Pole dancing can be as demanding as martial arts, kick boxing and break-dancing

Pole dancing can be a high impact sport – it’s a full body workout which helps build your core strength. If you’re worried about any pre-existing medical conditions, you think you might be pregnant or it’s just a while since you’ve given your body a real work-out make sure you consult your doctor. If they ask you what kind of exercise you’re taking up and you’re feeling a bit sheepish just tell them it’s something else.

Also, take it easy in your first session, your body will need to get used to pole dancing so set yourself some achievable goals with your teacher and you’ll enjoy the experience a whole lot more.

You can learn pole anywhere

  • Myth: It’s really hard to find somewhere to learn to pole dance.
  • Fact: You can learn to pole dance pretty much anywhere.

For the beginner pole dancer, the choice of pole dancing in the UK alone is now tremendous. With over 300 pole schools in the UK and the US, and growing numbers in Europe and worldwide, you are positively spoilt for choice in where to go. A couple of great places to find your local schools can be found here or here. If you’re really keen you can opt for private lessons. It’s pricier but you’ll benefit from one-to-one teaching and as a result should progress more quickly than if you were in a group lesson.

If there isn’t a school near you, you could always consider investing in your own pole and some DVDs. It’s not the same as having lessons or an instructor. Learning in a class means someone is watching you and can make observations that you can’t see so do try and find a class.

There’s a great choice out there and we even sell our own Platinum Stages, Alistage and RPole.

So now you’re armed with the facts and I’ve debunked a few myths too. What’s stopping you?

Life is challenging, it can throw things into our path that we are least expecting, and sometimes it can be tough and stressful. The more things that we set ourselves the challenge to do, and the more things we achieve, the easier life becomes!

I took up pole dancing back when it was a completely taboo subject – and I had to fight for my rights to exercise on the pole. Now, we face a completely different world, and pole has become much more widely accepted. Say to yourself, “Why not be brave and take a chance at doing something that I find a little scary!”

Take the opportunity to be spontaneous, and you might just find you have an awesome time and take something a little spiritual away from it. What’s more you could end up with a flat tummy too!

Coming up: getting into ‘pole position’ finding a good school or instructor. .

16 Responses to “Beginner pole dancing – everything you wanted to know but were afraid to ask”

  1. I am 46 years old and have been pole exercising for about 4 years and it is the best exercise I have ever tried.

  2. ImakeShooze 21 May, 2011 at 9:43

    I am compleately inspired by what i just read ! i think pole is amazing and after a year at the gym i got bored . i now have a pole in my house and i plan on getting some good classes and going the whole way-to pole pro. i think pole dance is beautiful and another means of expression . i plan to do some yoga to help with flexibility. ive taught myself some basic moves and i cannot express how great i feel….. mighty grip works a treat too….. long live the pole …. its my new stress reliever!

  3. This is great to show to potential students who aren’t sure whether pole dance is for them. Thanks!

    I would also add that pole dance is for everyone, not just incredibly thin girls. No matter your size shape, or even gender, you can learn to pole dance, and have amazing fun doing so!

  4. Pole beginner 27 July, 2011 at 20:28

    i just had my first pole dancing lesson tonight and I found it incredibly hard, even to do something simple like swing around for 2 seconds. I kept wanting to try and ‘jump’ into the moves instead of pushing myself into them or stepping into them as my teacher instructed. I have good upper body strength but this made me feel like i couldn’t holdup my own weight at all. If i don’t jump up into the move i feel like i’m too close to the floor and i’m just gonna fall. Is it like this for everyone when they start? Because i felt like it was just me who couldn’t do it. Has anyone got any tips? I have heard poledancing is great and I have lots of non-athletic and even overweight friends who seem to find it really easy. I feel really deflated :-(

  5. hi there!
    i was wondering what dates times and location you teach pole dancing? i’m interested in joining
    many thanks!

  6. I am 52 years old and i have been pole dancing for 18 months and now instruct @ a female gym.

  7. I know how u feel pole beginner. I was the same way. I went out and bought a pole and dvds and practiced at home first. I also did pull ups and pushuos before getting on the pole. I was upset with myself to at first bc im muscular and cldnt lift myself up, felt defeated by my own body. Ive gotten better but still struggle at times, im doing more than wat i was doing. So hang in there you will do great it will come.

  8. All that time wasted in the gym building muscle, strength and sculpting a toned body and here doing pole i was shocked that i couldnt lift my own body up on a pole. Smh. People must realize pole is a sport and huge confident builder and you lose weight sooo much faster with pole fitness.

  9. [email protected] 29 February, 2012 at 12:03

    Started pole last week it was my first time started with my sister!found it very hard, felt like i looked arkwrd ut she looked brill and took to it so easy, will it get easier??will i get better??or ami wasting time??


  10. Rebecca Smith 1 March, 2012 at 21:27

    i started my first pole dancing lesson tonight and found it hard..i will probably have some bruises in the morning..i really enjoy watching the girls practising but i just abit out of place as i couldn’t get the swing into swing properly..i do have strong upper body strength but feels it’s going to take some time to learn it properly :(..the course i’m doing is on for 6 weeks and hope i can get the hang next time i go

  11. I know how you feel, I have been doing it for 6 weeks and all the class can do the chopper apart from me. I have good upper body strength but it doesn’t seem to help. Can anyone advise me please.

  12. I am zero flexible…should I start yoga lessons or the pole will work my flexibility?

  13. Jheira Karlayna 19 November, 2012 at 1:03

    Hello pole beginner, gottagetabody and Anita. I went to my first poling class roughly 2 1/2 wks ago. I hated it. I have been dancing since I was 3 years old and doing yoga, and weight-lifting for 2/3 of my life. I could not do a thing. When I expressed my trauma to the teacher, she said ” there are no can’ts in here and you will do 25 push ups if you say that again”. Wow?! Really?! Plus there is no dancing…did not enjoy. I was so excited. *sigh*

  14. Saw a few beginners who didn’t like their first class above. I had my first class last week and loved it. We didn’t do any moves that required much strength. We also did a good bit of stretching and conditioning before we did any moves with the pole. I was very sore afterwards, but I still feel confident about it. Maybe some classes move too fast. Or mine too slow. Btw: I’m a bit over weight and usually only do cardio, so I don’t think you have to be in great shape to start. I am really exited and have been doing the conditioning moves on my own. Can’t wait till week 2!we will start with the fireman which will be the first swing type move we will do.

  15. Hello, I read this after doing some research on pole dancing, the main reason I started looking at pole dancing is simply because I live to dance, and I have a lot of dificulties that keep me from a lot of sports. I love the idea, but I am really only 14. I just want to do it to be fit, and to see myself as the beautiful person I feel like. Does my age stop me from learning in classes? Is there any way I could do it at my age?

  16. I got a pole near Christmas and had a twirl around on it and noticed I weren’t so bad.., but I would love to learn bigger and better tricks so where Can I go in Norwich to get lessons please..?

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