39. Pole dance!

I have to say, when I embarked upon my 50th year I never thought I’d be writing a blog in which I recounted my experience of pole dancing!! But with some encouragement from my friend and ex-colleague Becka (who is Ms Flexible and a pretty mean pole dancer), it came to pass that I rocked up at Chrome Roses dance studio in central Cardiff for the beginner’s pole dancing class.

The studio is long and narrow, with 5 poles and mirrors the length of one wall (yuck! – I hate full length mirrors!!) and sheer net curtains and fairy lights along the other. Teacher Leah Rose is every bit the pole dancer… shapely thighs, a butt to die for, and legs up to her arm pits. Oh, and some pretty mean dancing shoes too!! The class was made up of ladies of a variety of ages, shapes and sizes – I didn’t feel too out of place even if I didn’t know what I was doing!

Before touching the poles, we had to warm up. Stretching legs and arms into all sorts of contorted positions, it soon became clear that this class was not for the faint hearted. Clearly, my body wasn’t going to manage some of the contortions! Duly ‘warm’, Leah explained that this evening we were going to learn a short routine to music.

Elegance was the order of the evening, as we were encouraged to ‘dance’ on extended feet / tip toes (hard!). The first moves involved a little ‘jump’. Leah explained that movements requiring our feet to leave the floor  would be achieved by supporting our body weight through firmly grasping the pole, arm above head and shoulders dropped. Easier than it sounded (especially when your body weight is my body weight!!)

The next move was what my friends in the pub would call a ‘slut drop’ and gyrate. Not too challenging in itself, but not easy to make it look sexy and tasteful! Put the two moves together… yes, I could manage that. Then we added in some lunges, for which my hours at the gym were handy preparation. Ok so far.

Next, a spin. Oh my… As I understood it, the spin is best achieved by gaining momentum from an outstretched leg which you then ‘wrap’ around the pole, gripping the pole between your knees as you spin. I did actually manage some kind of a spin – the evidence is clear from the big black bruise that now runs along my inner thigh!

That was four ‘moves’. So far (relatively) so good. But, let me remind you, I am 50. Four moves is quite a lot for an old fogey such as myself to remember, and as moves 5 and 6 were added in, things began to go awry… Out of the first spin, stretch leg, another (different) spin, swap legs, hook knee round pole, stretch out seductively… Yes, I can remember it *NOW*… but I sure as hell couldn’t when it mattered!! Finally, something about holding pole, ducking under arm, and finishing with elegantly outstretched legs… errrrr….yeah right 😉

It seemed like we had hardly learned the set of moves, than it was time to try out the whole routine. We had a few chances to run through our ‘perfected’ routines, and then it was ‘cool down’ time. Some (quite unnatural) stretches… and it was all over. The one-hour class went so quickly, and it really was so much fun! I laughed a lot. And, I have to say, it was an exceptionally good full-body workout and today I have been royally aching!

Thank you to Becka for encouraging me to come along, to Leah for being a great teacher, and to the other class participants for making it fun!

I’m actually quite proud of what I achieved… and I may yet be back. Anyone care to join me?


[39 down, 11 to go]




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