The Cheeba Splits… Oh What A Journey

The Cheeba Splits have always seemed kind of cool to me. As a move they look kind of bad ass… uh how are you holding on?! And for a split they are actually pretty practical (and we all know my hatred of most things pole split!).

So yesterday I gave the Cheeba Split a go. Again. The first time I gave them a go was way back in 2013 and it went something along the lines of “never again”.

My original Cheeba Splits

My original Cheeba Splits

Back then I attempted to get into it from Genie. Freaking Genie. This made it so you had to bend over sideways to get your neck on the pole, hook your arm, get the other arm below your neck and somehow fall and catch into straight legs.

It was a bloody disaster and a super painful contortion at that. I’m not saying it isn’t do-able, just that it massively sucked and the thought of using that in any kind of routine was unimaginable. It was completely not worth it.

On floor feeling broken after said Cheeba Splits

On floor feeling broken after said Cheeba Splits

The second time I saw the Cheeba Splits it was coming out of an elbow Ayesha. You move your legs, grab the one and BAM you’re in a split. I simply laughed at this particular way as I don’t do elbow grips. Ever. I’ve never been secure in them (actually they are responsible for the only two serious falls I’ve had in pole) and thus the thought of playing with my legs in one wasn’t going t happen.

So for three years I simply ignored the Cheeba splits. They just weren’t on my radar. Then the other day I saw  a fail video on which a girl did the Cheeba splits from a brass monkey. Hrmm I thought… it looks possible..

It’s been three years since I attempted this move. Since then I have gained a lot more strength and I’d say a bit more useful flexibility.

So I gave it a go.

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And the results were pleasantly surprising. Not only could I get into it but I could also get out of it without a death crash to the floor. Interesting…

And so I did it five more times (for the pictures of course!). I practiced getting it, adjusting to see what felt best, holding it and dismount. And voila, it felt halfway decent.

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So now the reason I wrote this blog to begin with (and the lesson isn’t to have a three years waiting period on moves!): entry matters.

Depending on your personal strengths/weaknesses/flexibility or lack thereof, how you get into a move has a huge outcome on your success.

Just like not every move is practical for every pole dancer, some polers will prefer different entry paths into a move than others. They will feel more comfortable, more practical and be able to execute them easier.

So if there’s a trick that you desperately want to nail, one you think you can master (read: have adequate strength/flexibility/skill level for) then don’t give up after only one attempt. Instead check out multiple ways to enter the move and give them a shot.

I may refuse to do an elbow hold and hate most bendy contortion but my shoulder mount and brass monkey are strong, making this the ideal way for me to get in (and out) of the Cheeba Splits.

Sometimes moves take time and effort, you can’t just smash a new trick every single day. Play with it, experiment with it and find a way to make it comfortable for you.

And if all else fails, dance and spin and sweat it out until you forget about said move 😉