Help! Just got my new X-pole & my fat-ass can't use it!
First..... let me start by saying, UGH! I have been DYING to get a pole for over a year now and this week I finally got one off Craigslist (a 45mm Chrome X-pole) complete with a fabulous crashmat. I finally got the thing put together (thanks to Youtube) but I now face the two following problems.....
1) I cannot figure out for the life of me how to get it off spin mode. Yes, I read the directions.... I just can't do it.
2) I just realized that I have ZERO upper body strength. I can't even do any simple spins. Obviously, it doesn't help that I could stand to lose about 40 pounds but hey, thats kinda why I bought the pole....lol.
I cannot even begin to explain how depressing this is! No... I didn't think I would just jump on the pole and "poof" magically know how to pole, but I also didn't think I would feel like a small hippo hanging off a piece of metal in my living room!
Has anyone else felt this way? If so, how did you approach gaining strength and skills? I plan on upgrading my Veena membership for lessons since I can't afford to go to the studio right now, but I really need some advice from someone who isn't a size 2 that has been through this and made some progress....
Sad in tha Bay,
Hi Miss Devious!
A small hippo?!? Nooooooo!!! I appreciate the sarcastic humor but banish that self depreciating talk!
Did you watch the XPole installation video? It is more clear than the manual IMO. It has a small segment on enabling and disabling the spin feature. Maybe someone will chime in with some helpful advice on that since I am awful at explaining that kind of stuff.
I recently started poling and was embarrassed at how little upper body strength I had. I used to be an active exerciser and rock climber years ago. I got the video lessons and enjoy them a lot.
I have built upper body strength by holding onto the pole, doing plank and push ups. My strength has grown dramatically in a short amount of time and I am very encouraged. I am 30 pounds overweight so it is much harder to defy gravity. (I hope in time that number grows MUCH smaller but it does not keep me from poling).
Be patient and persistent... celebrate your accomplishments! The forum is a great place and extremely supportive and helpful.
Keep us updated on your progress!
Don't feel bad at all!
1 you should have a little hex key with your pole, this fits into small screws at the base of the pole, make sure the screws are not missing. Also are you sure its on spin? Did you maybe not tighten the adjuster rod enough?
2 In the veena method, I don't consider most spins as simple or as beginner moves. They are something you will need to work up too. So don't feel bad. When you do sign up for the lessons I start you off with strength moves that you work on first, and also we work on transitions, and floorwork building up strength as you work towards spins.
It does get better
It can take many weeks to build up proper upper body strength to do spins that appear easy. My instructor always tells people that it may be 8 weeks before they can climb the pole. Take things easy. To start, just practice moves in which at least one foot is on the floor (i.e. swoops, hooking one leg on the pole, pirouettes, body waves). Then, try a little bit of strengthening (i.e. hanging off the pole without trying to climb). I think you may be at a disadvantage trying to learn on spin mode because you're dealing with additional issues (like the momentum constantly trying to knock you off). I don't have Xpole, so I'm not familiar with what you need to do to make it static. I think you will have success following Veena's lessons.
I just want to say that I, myself, am a plus size beauty that once too felt intimidated by the skinny mini's that pole so effortlessly. the x-pole is designed to hold up to 250+ lbs. I don't think you should be so hard on yourself. I think once you start to build your confidence, you'll be great on the pole. I can't give you any advice about how to get a pole off the spin mode because my pole is static, however, as far as the upper body strength, I'm your girl. I have the same issue as far as my strength. I felt my arms were as strong as cooked pasta! Lately, I've been using 5lb weights and lifting slightly to strengthen my wrists and working on my biceps/triceps (whatever those arm muscles are called). I also plan to start lifting my weight and holding as long as possible on the pole w/both arms for 5 reps. Try things like this @ first, and your upper body strength should increase. Don't forget your core muscles too! Some cardio and crunches will help w/that. Good luck w/your endeavors!!!
dont be so tuff on urself. it will take time to build that upper body strength. when i took classes, we did two spins forever unlil we built up to do more. u will be in awe on how fast u pick up on things once u get on ur way.
in terms of the pole, r u lined up with the x on the base? i had to tighten and loosen the pole to make sure i was in the right place so i wasnt strippin the pole. if u run into any problems, call xpole. im sure they will guide u thru the process. sometimes just bein able to be talked thru the process is helpful. when i bought my first i was pretty nervous and then became annoyed. lol. i def called them to help me thru.
When in doubt, Xpole is always willing to help you out. Also the demo on You Tube is really helpful as well.
I understand where your coming from. Im 250lbs and im always scared of playin on other poles I just dont know yet. I was sold on the xpole when I went to the convention and played on the Xstages. My thinking is if they could hold me, then the xpert would work. Pole takes time, I took me YEARS to get the basic invert and MONTHS to even climb!
happened for me. Don't get down on yourself. We all have to start somewhere!! Keep at it!
Thanks for everyones help! It turns out I didn't have the pole properly installed, so that is why it was spinning. My husband finally got it all figured out for me, so today was my first time really getting to play on it. I may not know any moves yet, and I may be terribly out of shape....But, WOW!!! I had alot of fun. I must say, it beats a frikken treadmill. I sweat my butt off, I am sore all over and I have the bruises to prove it, but I am happy.
Im new to the pole also and i cant spin or do anything on the pole yet but i just keep at it and today i was able to hold myself up but 1 min not that long i no but to me it felt like a hour i was so proud of myself and that little bit was all i need to keep on pushing myself come on you can do it just set small goals and you will be swing in no time
I got my pole about a month ago and couldn't hold myself up for ONE SECOND. The thing is just sitting there looking at me everyday and I avoid eye contact with it!!!! BUT after looking at many people on this site, I figure I need to start....not going to give into the pole!!!
So I decided to get a membership a few days ago with this site and it has been so helpful! Today I actually did some of the warm ups and learned proper technique to doing a basic hold. I still cant do it for more than a second, but I figure just trying the hold a few times everyday, along with the strength exercises, I WILL get it. I know it will take months to do some of these basic moves but I am commited to doing this. I really think signing up for a membership would be a HUGE plus for you.
One day at a time is my moto......
Well, I had no upper body strength, and I am still about 40lbs away from being where I want to be, but I am consistant. I can now climb, the pole hold is still a challange and inverting is coming slowly. Patience, persistance, and encouragement from the lovely ladies here and at the studio where I go.
One Day At A Time!
Oh yes, and you can do it, girl.
I think the biggest part is having fun! That's why I went with pole, and why I continue to come back...for me, a lot of "traditional" fitness is boring, so having fun is the biggest challenge!
As long as you have fun, and you push yourself just a little bit when you feel you can, you will progress, and you'll get stronger...trust me, everyone starts off feeling like they're as tough as a spaghetti noodle!
A lot of us started out feeling like "no way" can I pull myself up or hold my body; no matter what size or weight. Even though many came from some type of exercise, weight classes, etc. dealing with one's own body weight is different than 5-8 lb weight repetitions. I started pole thinking I was "fit" uh-no :) Had to start all over not even being able to hold the pole and lift feet off the ground for 1 second pole hold. Strength does come when we least expect it. I've been at it three years and just feeling like more strength to move on. Remember, some things on pole come faster than others, we are all mix and match with accomplishments. Have fun and you've come to the right place for that, as well as support and encouragement. Welcome!!!
Its funny that you said that... I had really always thought of myself as "strong". I can get down on the weights at the gym with no problem, but lifting my own body weight is a whole other problem! Talk about a reality check. I guess thats why I was so "shocked" that I couldn't jump on the pole and magically do everything....HaHaHaHa! But its all good.... at least when I am finally able to pull myself up on that pole, I will know without a shadow of a doubt how strong I really am.
just to get familiar with moving around the pole, and building strength. pole uses muscles I didn't even know I had, and the best way to strengthen them is pole dilegence.
ive lost a few lbs, but, I am strong. I kid with my nephews and tell them I could snap a body in half with my thighs. they laugh, I'm serious.I've never felt so freaking STRONG. now that me and my margarita machine have ended our love affair, watch these lbs fly off!
OMG!! I felt exactly the same way. LOL.. I got the lessons.. best $$ I've ever spent!!!!
Concentrat on the "Conditioning/Strength" lessons and in NO time (yes, it took me a month or two) you'll be on there!
It's slow, and it's hard.. but I just took off 8 weeks with NOTHING at all (and I only had 8 wks of the lessons prior) and I haven't lost One Bit of it. That really makes me feel good, cause I figured I'd have to start from scratch.
Go For It!! - You'll be FINE. I would also suggest that you work some on Beginner stuff.. .. but the combination of that AND conditioning was a bit much (time wise) so I would go for the strength/conditioning First if you don't have time for both.
I also felt too overweight - did another round of HCG diet, and wa la... 24 lbs gone in 40 days! Yay. Check it out... search for 'Pounds and Inches original manuscript" and it'll pop up.
Ugh - I know EXACTLY how you feel! Hang in there, it will definitely get better. For me, poling really starts out as a labor of love; it is awesome and super fun/inspiring, yet at the same time extremely discouraging and intimidating (dare I say depressing?).
Just keep trying and it will happen. The feeling that you get when you can finally do something is worth how hard it is. Oh, and I am NOT 5'2" and 110lbs!
I only had about twenty pounds to loose well I thought it was thirty when I started my classes at a local studio. I was actually working out and lifting weights and I still felt like I was hanging from the pole the first few weeks.
Our beginner classes focused a lot of building the strength and I still attend them because they show beginner to advanced strength building techniques. One thing I appreciated about being in a class was the ladies were right there giving me encouragement all the way through. Other than the instructor they all started with very little upper body strength and worked up to where they are now.
It took me 4 weeks to climb the pole but it takes some ladies 8 weeks and we have 11 foot poles at the studio. Don't worry if you keep at it you will get there. As far as I can tell you build muscle a lot faster in pole than you do lifting weights. You will eventually learn to use your core muscles to aid in a lot of the things that require upper body strength it takes some time and practice.
You can do it!! You just gotta push through it. the first few sessions are the hardest and your arms will scream at you the next day but its so worth it. I started pole as a 5'5" 175lb woman and I'm down to 163 right now. I couldn't climb at all my first day but I could do the spins since I did some of them as a kid so I was used to the concept of them. While I've still got 33 lbs to go pole has helped a ton. If you just push past the sore muscles and bruises for the first bit of it, you will find spins, climbs, and holds get easier. to get the x-pole out of spin mode, make sure the two screws at the bottom are lined up with the two x's on the base plate. if you don't do this, the pole will shift and possible pound the x-joint out of place like it did with mine (that was also cuz i didnt tighten the x-joint properly).
you can totally do it! also remember - the people who put videos on youtube, etc, are usually the fairly skinny body confident girls! Don't get me wrong, they're amazingly brave and I admire them (i am too scared to put stuff on YT!) but if you're not going to classes or meeting other polers in person you can get this idea that only skinny girls are good at it. I have been to lots of different studios and trust me - I have seen a LOT of plus size, gorgeously chunky and curvy girls do amazing things on the pole! Stuff that I can only hope to do in a million years. So don't get into the mindset of "I will only be able to do stuff once I've lost weight", it's all about strength and not your size or shape at all! Keep practicing and it'll come!
Hey guys, iv been doing pole for 2 weeks now (same as other people) and i still cant do the basic stuff, like even just lifting both legs up of the floor for more than a second !! Other people are doing it really well, and im alot bigger then them so i always feel fat, i felt really faint last week too ! I dont understand why i cant do the basic of basics, i did a 6 week course last year aswell and i still cant even swing backwards :( any advice?
@Ceri123x Don't worry about what you can't do. I couldn't lift both feet up off the ground when I started and I wasn't even a bigger girl! I literally just had ZERO strength in my upperbody. Try to focus on technique, and strengthening with basic spins and climbing and you will get there I promise. :) In the meantime, there are tons of great transitions and floorwork to learn that will help keep you busy and improve your confidence on the pole.
It just sucks because we all do the same stuff in the class as the teacher gives it too us, and everyone can do it and i just cant ! I can do a basic fireman and the dancing im fine at but any sort of lifting myself up or doing any sort of spins i just cant do ! :(
Hi Miss Devious,
I'm a beginner too, and just working through the begginer moves on Veena's lessons. It might be that while your arms are strong it's your grip that's a bit weak. Just enjoy dancing and doing the beginner transitions and strength building. My focus right now is just on building strength, grip and being able to dance and do transitions, so when i'm at the pole trick stage I can make it look good =) I've been doing it for about a month now and am seeing huge improvements without really feeling like i tried too hard because it's been fun enough that I've wanted to do it. :) take care! xxxx
It just cant do any of the basic stuff, even the pole sit i can only sit up there for a like a second, and im so clumsy ! Its just because everyone else can do it all so quickly and i just cant do it ! Id love to do things at home but i just dont no, im scared about going to my next lesson on saturday now !
Miss Devious, I feel the same way. I got my pole after two months of watching YouTube videos and reading StudioVeena discussions so after my husband set it up I tried to climb up.... and I couldn't do it! I can now roughly climb up, but it's nothing graceful and I have to stop myself from holding my breath from the effort.
In an effort to get stronger, I had been working on cardio and strength on alternating days. I quickly realized I couldn't do pull ups or push ups at all! So now I am working at getting to the point where I can do those so I can do pole things other than walking around the pole LOL.
Here are two useful starting points that I am working on:
The second website, Nerd Fitness looks like a great resource and is written from the perspective of someone who started out weak, unlike so many websites that assume everyone can do pull ups, etc. :) Have fun with it, don't compare your progress to anyone else's, and listen to music that makes you feel sexy working out!
I am new to Pole also and am on day 10 of Veena's lessons. I am following her beginner lessons in order. Warm up, Pole Strength exercises,Conditioning and Stretching. I can see progress in 10 days. I highly recommend her lessons. I really like how she names the muscles you will use with each exercise/move. If one is really difficult for me I then know which muscles I need to work on.
I have commited to 1 year of lessons and I feel it will take at least that long to learn to do all the wonderful moves I see all the Veeners on here doing. I know there may be moves I may not be able to do but time will tell. I am having so much fun with my Pole !!!!!
I have a pull up bar in my doorway. I started using that when I started Aerials and discovered how strong my legs were and how weak my upper body was. I can do a pull up, swing on it and do leg lifts now. I cannot lift myself much on the Pole Yet. I am trying not to let that discourage me and staying focused on building strength and conditioning. I know in time I will be able to lift, climb and invert. It takes time.
I am so enjoying my at home StudioVeena Classroom. Please hang in there.XXOOOO
Miss Devious, I was in a wheel chair for a year have had a ton of surgeries and not much movement for well over 10 years. Its been 7 since remission. Altho I don't have a weight issue weak is weak. Don't ever give up!! Everyone one us is here to help and support you. I certainly hope you stay with us!!!!
Hang in there and keep at it. When you feel like its not getting better you will be shocked at what you find yourself doing. I remember not being able to get my head off the floor in the back bend... for weeks!!! Then one day I realized it was up!!! I was so happy! Stay with it.