The Evolution of How I Pole Dance


I’m in a weird space when it comes to pole dancing. I’ve lost most of my strength because I stopped working out as much as I did last year and have regressed in the progress that I had started to make when I was consistent. Lately, I’ve been going to class when I go. Last year I was going at least twice a week. I recently¬† joined a gym that offers pole dancing and plan to supplement that education with some of the better studios that focus strictly on pole but the issue now is scheduling. I started a new job so being consistent is going to be hard but I’m passionate about pole again, so that’s the first step. I lost that enthusiasm for a minute but it’s back so I’m going to make redeveloping a consistent practice a priority (I have a pole at home that I use sometimes but classes are better).

At the moment I am a level two, which is kind of not good because last year I was more a basic three. When it comes to pole dancing you advance when your body is ready but I’m naturally strong as long as I condition myself and eat properly, so advancing shouldn’t take me too long (although, my core is slow to respond to strength training) but I’ve been poling since 2011. It has been off and on but again, I feel like I should be more developed in my practice than I am. I get so discouraged when I see women who started at around the same time that I did doing much better than me. I’m working on not comparing myself but it’s hard.

I still struggle with leg hangs, something that has never been my forte, and I lack fluidity. The latter has become extremely important to me. When I first started pole dancing it was all about nailing tricks. I just wanted to be strong and show off what I could do but what happened is, I started being able to do individual tricks but without real dance moves. I lack vocabulary and it looks silly when you’re in a class where they tell you to freestyle but all you can do is individual moves so I want to fix that. These days I’m about learning more combos and transitions and not thinking too hard about my freestyles and choreography so that even if I’m in a space where I can’t or don’t feel like doing death-defying tricks (it’s not like I know that many) I can still create a dazzling flow. The more I watch pole dancers lately, the more I look for fluidity. There are some, like Caitlin Goddard for example, who just breathe fluid motion.

So being a smooth operator, but in my own way, is my current focus, because I plan to do more pole performances (whenever those opportunities arise, hopefully they do but that’s another story) and flowing just feels good.

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Starrene Rhett Rocque is a former member of Dumbledore's Army who now enjoys gallivanting at pole, yoga and dance studios. She also occasionally fantasizes about becoming a shotgun-toting b-movie heroine.