Teaching Beginners

A few weekends ago I was recruited to teach a pole session to a few girls before a certain bar opened. Normally, this is not something I would agree too but I gave it a shot anyways. Boy did it teach me a lot.

Sometimes, as dancers we forget what it was like to learn pole. If anyone had a decent instructor you’ll remember that you have to start slow. You have to work “from the bottom up”. The first time you dance, you think of all the fun, unique holds and lifts you’ve seen. You’re excited to flip upside down. You’re going to twirl and jump and play. When in reality, you learn a few spins.

For some, this may be extremely frustrating. But the fact remains “you have to walk before you can run”.

learning to walk

The problem I have teaching parties is that everybody wants to learn so much- which is awesome! But you can’t learn 8 spins in one hour if you didn’t perfect the technique of the first one. Moving forward when you haven’t fully grasped the concept can result in injury (specifically with the rotator cuff).

The most common question I get asked is to teach people to flip upside down. While I understand how amazing it is to do this the first time, if you haven’t built up enough strength it can be extremely dangerous. For people who are unable to hold their body weight with their feet off the floor, flipping upside down is a disaster waiting to happen.

By taking the time to strengthen the necessary muscles and perfect the technique of a clean invert, you ensure that your invert is not only safe, but much more graceful as well.

The last part of my night was remembering what it was like to be young in a bar. I’m pretty sure the main focus is “to be hot”. The problem that arises with this is that most girls think that moving really fast is hot. Shimmy, shake, hair flip = hot. While this style of dancing can be really gorgeous, it comes back to learning the technical aspects of the pole. If you haven’t nailed those, slow it down.

Tap House

Moving slowly and accenting your moves has a lot more appeal that spinning as fast as you can and out of control. But let’s face it, spinning is fun.

Overall, the night left me slightly burned out but also a bit reminiscent. It reminded me that the focus of being young and in a bar with a pole is to have fun; to be flirty, sexy and playful. And it should stay this way! Pole dancing should always be fun and make you feel wonderful about yourself.

Tap House 2

While I loved that I remembered what it is to be young and hot, I was also reminded that I am a Personal trainer first. Meaning, as much as I would love to teach you 8 spins in one hour without you understanding the mechanics of any of them, I can’t.

Safe Dancing 🙂