Pole Dancing/Fitness: Beginning and Thoughts.

Towards the end of last year I got involved with Pole-Dancing at The Studio in Wellington. This largely came about because of attending performances that my lovely girlfriend was involved with (shows that were mostly focused on Burlesque and Pole routines).

Actual pole dancing is very cool and is quite a different beast then what you may immediately think of, strippers and strip clubs being the more common associations. I’ve never been to a strip club and now that I’ve seen burlesque and pole dancing routines, I’d never want to. You want to see naked bods that you can’t touch, look up some web-cam girls on teh interwebs. If you want to see quality of performance, awesome feats of strength, grace and acrobatics, look up some *good* pole dancers.

What sparked my interest in getting involved was going out to a show in Petone with some of Sarah’s friends from the Studio. It was a really fun night out and the people I was with were all involved with dancing. So when it was announced that they were gong to run an ‘amateur’ pole competition where the audience were invited to compete, the people that I was drinking with basically ended up representing the competition. They were a bit drunk and there were some falls, but they certainly made it look like a whole bunch of fun.

I’m really obsessed with music, and by association movement and choreography. My thoughts tend to enjoy taking a piece of music and then choreographing some kind of action sequence, dramatic moment, or fight scene in whatever context my mind tends to be focusing on at the time. Usually whatever RPG has most recently been occupying my thoughts. A number of the dance papers that I took at university were answered with similar thoughts and there were a couple of projects where I really got to let my imagination loose on piecing together a theoretical dance recital.

I find myself doing similar things, only now with potential pole routines in mind. Of course, they tend to be pretty ambitious and far beyond any skill I may hope to develop myself. But it means that I listen to music and will be able to recognise pretty quickly whether any given track would be appropriate for a pole routine. Basically, pole has weaseled it’s way into my unconscious reaction to music that I’m listening to. This particular phenomenon actually happened before I started doing anything myself, so I figured I ought to at least give it a go.

But what’s it all about? As a boy with limited flexibility I thought I was a bit daft to want to get into pole. I mean, a lot of what you do is just gymnastics on a vertical plane. However flexibility is not quite as pivotal for guys as our strength tends to lie in what we an do with our upper body. Which is not to dismiss the importance of flexibility, but I’ve got to work with what I have and work on what I don’t have. What I’ve found so far is that it’s really good for building strength through your abs/core and upper body, we also tend to do conditioning which reinforces that. When I don’t have to run away for a bus, we also do a fair amount of stretching at the end of the class, which I can only imagine is helping to improve on my limited flexibility.

Another aspect of pole which is not immediately apparent to the untrained eye, is the amount of bruising one must experience as you become accustomed to staying on and moving around the pole. Anytime a new part of your body is being heavily utilized to support your weight while you are in the air, it is quite likely that bruising will follow.

For me, it was a slow build to get where I am today. I’ve got a few moves in my repertoire but I’ve got a long way to go yet before you’ll get to see me outside of the studio. If you want to see what awesome male or female pole dancing looks like, there’s plenty to see on the Youtubes. Also, if anyone has any favorite videos and wants to share, post a link in the comments.

If you want to see some mental pole dancing, the 2009 Miss Pole Dance World winner, Felix Cane is always guaranteed to impress.

And if you’re curious about what it is we do, then please check out the linky at the top of the page for The Studio Facebook page. We’ve got an Open Pole Night coming up this Friday evening where you can have a couple of drinks, see some folk in action and try it out for yourself. It usually starts at 7pm and goes till around 10. There’s a $5.00 entry fee too.

And here’s a bonus something extra which I think is totally hippening; The Foals acoustically jamming away in the park with ‘Red Socks Pugie’



  1. Sass Said:

    Go the pole! I too can recommend a multitude of awesome pole clips from the youtubes, depending on whether your preference is gymnastical, sensual, or just damn cool:)

    Also, COME TO POLE NIGHT! I shall be there with my Noozle, balancing and flexing and showing off my skillz. Noozle is also underplaying some of the cool stuff he can do – don’t believe me? Well, there’s only one way to find out…;p

  2. Giffy Said:

    It’s cool that you’re getting your dance on. I’m looking forward to seeing your choreo 🙂

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