Pole Dancing has been given a bad wrap. More often than not, it is associated with sleazy bars, strip clubs and such and seen as sleazy and over sexual. I am writing this article in an effort to open your eyes to the amazing world of Pole Fitness.
The use of poles in fitness or performance can be traced back some 800 years to China where poles were used to develop strength, balance and control. In fact we still see poles used today in the Chinese Circus as well as other acrobatic performances.
Poles really only became a part of the striptease/burlesque set in the 1980’s or there about, starting in Canada and then moving to the USA and then the rest of the world. Poles were used to enhance the sensual/erotic performance of strippers and lap dancers.
It was in the 90’s that the fitness benefits of Pole Dancing were truly recognized. Since then, Pole Fitness has become an increasingly popular method of training the body to develop core and pelvic strength and stability, upper body strength, flexibility, cardiovascular fitness and general body conditioning. It has become popular for both men and women alike…although it still tends to be embraced mainly by women.
From my point of view, Pole Fitness offers the whole picture when it comes to fitness. As a Fitness leader of more than 30 years, I wish I had found Pole Fitness 20 years ago. Pole is both beautiful and challenging. It requires the development of incredible core and pelvic strength as well as a strong and stable upper body. Don’t worry, the butt and legs get a thorough work out too!
The requirement of being able to suspend yourself from the pole while performing a variety of lifts, holds, spins and inversions makes for some of the best upper body and core work you will ever do. The need to be able to wrap and roll yourself around the pole to fulfill some of the moves means that your flexibility will be challenged and developed too! All of this also means that joint mobility will be challenged and improved, that balance will be enhanced and that connective tissue will be strengthened and lengthened…vital to full body health and mobility. especially as we age!
Other benefits of pole fitness that I myself have experienced include:
- Increased self confidence as you are challenged to perform moves that you never thought possible.
- Empowerment – No, Really. Being able to perform incredible lifts and inversions is a truly empowering feeling.
- Greater body awareness.
- Improved hand eye coordination.
- Increased general strength and fitness.
- You are never too old or unfit to give this type of fitness a go. There will be something you can achieve and you will be driven to strive harder for the next challenge.
I personally, cannot speak highly enough about this versatile and challenging form of fitness. It is addictive. Spinning and Static poles are available for home use. So you can practice in the safety of your own home. You will need some pole grip and some short shorts in order to grip the pole.
Many forms of fitness wear will do the job but ranges of pole fashion are available. If you are going to practice alone, I recommend the use of a crash mat….just in case! Give it a go….you won’t regret it….I promise!