Despite progress in the public’s understanding of what we do, many of us still fight stereotypes. Some of pole dancing’s loudest critics have never tried it themselves. Just last year, Marina Heck, a schoolteacher, was forced to resign from her position following controversy that she is a pole dancer. Even if what we are doing is completely athletic and far removed from the type of pole dancing performed in strip clubs, we still need to explain ourselves. Many times when revealing to strangers what it is I do, I find myself hesitating because I don’t feel like justifying my passion to a skeptic.
Pole dancing is growing in popularity all around the world as a full-body workout. Men and women of all ages and abilities enroll in pole dancing classes in Dorchester as a part of their fitness regime, and for good reasons! Pole fitness offers a plethora of health benefits, including quickly burning calories, improving flexibility, improving blood flow, strengthening bones and jones, toning arms, abdomen, and legs, and improving your sense of balance. It’s an exciting endeavour, especially after the first time you’re able to stay on the pole. It’s important to first take classes before attempting any stunt on any pole in order to learn the fundamentals. Not to mention all the fun you’ll have being in group pole dancing class with other beginners and learning from an experienced pole dancer!
Pole dancing has gained popularity as a form of exercise with increased awareness of the benefits to general strength and fitness. These forms of exercise increases core and general body strength by using the body itself as resistance, while toning the body as a whole. A typical pole dance exercise regimen in class begins with strength training, dance-based moves, squats, push-ups, and sit-ups and gradually works its way up to the spins, climbs and inversions which are the métier of the exercise. Pole dancing is also generally reported by its schools to be empowering for women in terms of building self-confidence, in terms of which its erotic components are still the subject of some controversy. Some feminists argue that sexualized dancing of this kind cannot be seen as empowering because the choice to participate is not made in freedom from constraining power structures, especially given the performative aspect of many classes.
Dance poles that are permanent are fixed to the ceiling supported by a beam located the roof and they are fixated to the floor by different brackets and bearings. The way poles are fixed to the ceiling and the floor varies by which pole brand is purchased. Portable poles are attached to a base or a portable stage and do not need to be attached to the ceiling. These poles can easily be removed, dismantled and transported into cases to different locations.
Pole dance requires significant muscular endurance and coordination (as well as sensuality, in exotic dancing). Today, pole performances by exotic dancers range from basic spins and striptease in more intimate clubs, to athletic moves such as climbs and body inversions in the "stage heavy" clubs of Las Vegas and Miami. Dancer Remy Redd at the King of Diamonds, for example, is famous for flipping herself upside down into a split and hanging from the ceiling. Pole dance requires significant strength and flexibility. Upper body and core strength are required to attain proficiency, proper instruction, and rigorous training is necessary. Since the mid 2000s, promoters of pole dance fitness competitions have been trying to change peoples' perception of pole dance to include pole fitness as a non-sexual form of dance and acrobatics, and are trying to move pole into the Olympics as pole sports.