Why do I have to sign up for a course of lessons?

Pole dance is an aerial art and uses many muscles and poses that will be unfamiliar to you. I have to make sure that my students have mastered basic moves before carrying on to more advanced ones. Having a course of lessons with students of similar experience levels means that I can be sure that all students are ready for the next move, and also allows you watch and learn from each other. If you know you are going to have to miss a class, I am always happy to try to accommodate you in one of my other classes which will be covering the same material.

Am I fit enough to pole dance?

Yes. If you are fit enough to attend a 'normal' exercise class (even a low impact one), you're fit enough to start pole dancing. We don't expect students to arrive at their first class already strong enough and flexible enough to perform advanced moves such as this. We have a structured syllabus that works towards difficult moves in stages, giving you confidence in your ability. You'll quickly find your overall strength and fitness improve dramatically.

Am I too old/young to pole dance?

The bones and joints of young people are particularly susceptible to damage, especially due to overtraining. For this reason, I do not accept students under the age of 16. If you are under 16 and are particularly keen to pole dance, please contact me and we can discuss training options that will prepare you for the pole without risk of injury. Please remember, it is far better to wait until it safe to start your training than suffer long-term injury and joint problems.

There is no upper age limit for my classes. Pole dance helps increase bone density and can be incredibly valuable for women pre and post-menopause. As long as you have not been advised by your doctor that you should avoid exercise, pole dance is well within your grasp.

Do I need my own pole?

No. We provide all the equipment you'll need during your lessons and give advice about training and stretching work you can do at home without a pole if you want to work out in between lessons. Many students do find that they want a pole at home, however, and we're happy to advise on the best pole to suit your home and budget. If you are thinking of buying a pole, be aware that many of the cheaper poles on the market are not designed for actual pole dancing. Please be very, very careful if buying a pole without advice, as sub-standard poles can be dangerous.

You say dangerous - is pole dance dangerous? See below!

Is pole dance dangerous?

The answer to that is somewhere between yes and no. Pole dance can be dangerous. It's an aerial art, where we're frequently holding our entire bodyweight off the ground and are often inverted. Obviously, there is a risk in hanging upside down on a pole whilst holding on by what looks like little more than a toenail and hope. That said, high quality instruction, proper equipment (see above) and paying attention to your body make injury highly unlikely. If you do have a pole at home, we recommend that you don't work on moves you're not confident with unless you have someone you trust present, watching and ready to assist you if something starts to go wrong.Will it hurt?Sadly, I do have to say yes to this one. But not as much as you might imagine. Any unfamiliar exercise can lead to DOMS, which is a soreness in the muscles a day or two after training. This is perfectly normal and will diminish as you become more accustomed to the exercise. There will also be some bruising at times. This isn't the result of falling, but rather comes from trying to grip the pole with unfamiliar parts of the body, such as the back of the knee, or the inner thighs. Again, this is perfectly normal and I can recommend some treatments if students are concerned. Many pole dancers become quite proud of their pole bruises, as they're usually the sign of a new move mastered.

Obviously, if you are concerned about pain at any stage in your training, you should talk to your instructor and your doctor about it.

Doesn't this make me a stripper?

No. Taking your clothes off for money makes you a stripper. If that's what you want to do, I'll do my utmost to make you a very good stripper, but the vast majority of pole dancers aren't. Pole dance can be a sport, it can be art, it can be sexy, it can be sensual, it can be expressive, it can be playful and it can be energetic. It can be anything you want it to be. Personally, I tend towards the sensual and emotionally expressive when I dance, but you don't have to do the same. If you're uncomfortable telling friends that you're taking pole dance classes, tell them it's pole fitness. Or, better yet, bring them along. Once they see the skill, strength and grace involved, they'll be too busy being awed to pass judgement!

Will I get huge muscles and start to look like a man?

This is a question that gets asked about any form of exercise that involves muscle building, as many women are concerned about 'bulking up'. I can assure you that pole dancing once a week, or even daily, will not give you a bodybuilder's physique. Bodybuilders train for hours on end every day, paying incredible attention to everything they eat or drink, to look the way they do. It's not something you can do by accident. Pole dance will make you more muscular, and will lead to you losing some body fat. The combination of these two factors will mean that your muscles become more defined. So, if you're hoping for a toned bum, tummy, arms and legs, pole dance is definitely a good plan.

What do I need?

  • Appropriate clothing (this should be short shorts and a t-shirt or similar top)
  • A bottle of water
  • A willingness to learn

You may wish to have trainers for the warm up and leg warmers for stretching, but these will not be essential. Pole shorts need to be short to give the maximum amount of skin contact to grip the pole.

We also ask that you DO NOT use any lotion or moisturiser before your class. This makes the pole extremely slippery and presents a hazard to yourself and other students. You WILL NOT be permitted to pole if you have recently used lotions.

All jewellery should be removed before starting as it can get caught or damage you or the pole.