Step 10: The Key to Nailing Advanced Pole Trickskeex
Aug 13, 201215 people like this
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A POLE ADDICT'S GUIDE TO RE(DIS)COVERY: Step 10
Continued to take personal inventory and, when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.
I had a brand new massage client (pole dancer) last week that complained of relentless stabbing pains around her right shoulder blade. It was the kind of pain and discomfort that kept her awake at night. As she described the nature of her injury, she told me that she’s only been pole dancing for 3 months. And she’s convinced her injury was caused by kicking up into inversions when she “obviously wasn't strong enough” to be inverting anyway. While blaming her overly eager attitude for dulling her own better judgement, she was also surprised that inversions were being taught so early in her training.
As insatiable pole addicts it's hard not to want to excel at warped speed. We want to bypass the tedium of the basics and master competition-level skills like the big dogs of our industry. But all that passion and reckless determination can hinder our own true potential. As athletes and artists, it’s important to honestly assess our training methods and determine if they’re really working to our advantage.
"Pay attention... your results don't lie."--Jack Canfield
Of course, pain, bumps, bruises, injuries, learning curves and training plateaus come with the territory. But how might we re-think our training in order to maximize our time on the pole, advance steadily and sustain fewer injuries and setbacks?
FUNDAMENTALS: Learning proper alignment is like learning the alphabet of dance. It's our foundation. Ideal alignment is being able to find the most mechanically efficient positioning for the body as we dance or perform pole tricks. In fact, every pole trick is based upon a.) a fundamental grip, brace or hook b.) understanding the push/pull forces required to achieve and sustain a pole trick and c.) knowing how our bodies should be positioned in relation to the pole.
Proper fundamentals allow us to:
1. recruit the proper muscles for each skill in a way that maximizes our strength, ensures joint integrity & our physical safety
2. dance with aesthetically beautiful, clean lines
3. generate push/pull forces to create resistance and stability
4. generate spin impulse and sustain a spin using centrifugal force
5. create fulcrums that support static poses whether we're upright or inverted
6.utilize pivot points for turns and spirals
TECHNIQUE: Once we've mastered the "alphabet" (fundamentals), technique is like learning to create basic words and sentences. It’s our ability to move skillfully and efficiently, step-by-step. And that's an ideal way to begin learning pole tricks; progressively building strength, coordination, confidence and muscle memory with basic skills that focus on alignment and technique.
Good, clean technique allows us to:
1. master the basics of pole dancing
2. build a foundation of strength, stability, coordination and control
3. develop the necessary skills and muscle memory before advancing to more challenging pole skills
4. seamlessly transition from one move into the next
5. dance with aesthetically beautiful, clean lines
ARTISTRY: Artistry is just as significant as fundamentals and technique. It's the part of our pole dance training where we learn to turn sentences (technique) into whole paragraphs and eventually stories by adding our own self-expression. It's about discovering our unique "selves" by exploring our own organic movement without judgement, comparisons or preconceived ideas. It's about allowing ourselves to get lost in the experience of unifying our movements with music to create a mood, feeling, character or story with depth of emotion.
Developing artistry allows us to:
1. infuse our technical skills with our personalities
2. create our own individual style
3. get out of our head and experience the feeling of each movement
4. interpret the rhythms, mood and emotions of the music we're dancing to
5. evoke a meaningful and emotional response from an audience which is part of the beauty and magic of creating art.
6. turn pole dancing into a cathartic experience for us, even when no one is watching.
"We all want progress, but if you're on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road."--C.S. Lewis
When it comes to developing athletic and artistic pole skills at an advanced level, the basics matter. In fact, no matter how "advanced" we are as pole dancers, it never hurts to go back and fine-tune the basics. Sometimes we have to ignore our overly ambitious egos that are dying to create intricately detailed stories and simply return to the alphabet.
Kira "Keex" Lamb
Kira "Keex" Lamb is the writer of Indie Girl Love Adventures, a unique & voyeuristic escape into her mental, emotional & spiritual journey of "suddenly dumped & betrayed by my husband of 6 years" to "newly single & depressed at age 38" to "clarity, wisdom, happiness & purpose" aka Indie Girl Spirit. (And, yes, pole dancing was a big part of her healing process).
Indie Girl Love Adventures is raw, honest and relatable to anyone that's ever experienced love & heartbreak.