Transitioning from aerialist to poler

annafreitag6311 Paid Member
Hi everyone! I'm new here and excited to learn amazing pole stuff :) I'm currently an aerialist and have already built up a lot of the muscles to be successful in pole. Has anyone transitioned from doing primarily aerial sling to pole? What tips do you have for transitioning?? I'm sad I can't dance with my beloved aerial sling during the corona virus crisis, but that's why I decided to get a pole. I needed a creative outlet and a way to dance, and my pull-up bar was just not quite cutting it lol.
Apr 6, 2020
Welcome! I know there are many that transition! I went the other way but rarely use my hammock or lyra, just not enough time. But they are very much interchangeable which is great. Even with your background in aerial still check out the beginner lessons, this will help you understand terminology and how I structure my lessons. The strength and conditioning section is totally something you can you for aerial as well.
Apr 6, 2020
Corrie Paid Member
Me! Me! for the last year I've trained both pole & aerial sling! I started on sling a few years ago, then started taking pole last April. I basically used the pole as a way to train grip strength & inverts on days I couldn't train hammock, and to supplement my off-hammock ground training.

Just like you though, with coronavirus, my studio closed, and I don't have a rig (and am wary of getting one after spending too much time in the Safety & the Aerial Arts FB Group. :P), so I am now all pole, almost every day. Few things I've noticed, and the some rec's for Studio Veena programs.

- I find that my friends who do trapeze & lyra (vs. sling or silks) have less trouble bruising. Me? I bruised like crazy at first because pole is such a different pressure/feeling than sling (particularly on the inside of the legs/thighs)
- Veena is right - everything is very interchangeable! The biggest difference is I can't manipulate the pole like I can fabric. So there's less...cheating on certain types of moves. For example, I discovered when I started trying to do knee hooks/grips on the pole that I wasn't working at my max knee hook on a sling.
- Most off-pole & off-sling conditioning looks similar. Currently going through Shannon Mackenna's Aerial Inversions for All book and its got the same skill sets in Veena's pole inversions course - so they compliment each other really well!
- Pole turns/pirouettes/spins were my nemesis for a long time because there is not a comparable skillset up in the hammock.

For Studio Veena, I totally recommend the 30 day Take Off - she gives a great grounding in basic terms, body placement, throughout that course - some things I didn't get in the mixed levels pole class I took. You could pair it with another series too - for example, right now I'm re-doing the 30 day invert course and also doing the 30 day caterpillar course - or go right through each of the Beginner moves and on to the Intermediate. You may find that pairing the 30 day take off with the 30 day invert or 30 day flow will help you understand the pole basics!

I hope this helps! If you're on Instagram I'm @aerialcorrie so would be happy to share more! I will also say that with all the poling I'm doing, I've seen crazy strength/hold/body mechanic gains that I haven't seen on sling so it's a GREAT apparatus!
Apr 7, 2020
annafreitag6311 Paid Member
Thank you Veena and Corrie! That is great advice. So far I've started to go through the 30 day take off to familiarize with pole terms and which exercises are best to train pole moves, but I will definitely take a peak at those other 30 day programs as well as the beginner classes in general.

Corrie, I'm very much looking forward to the gains by cross training! :D The grip is quite different on this thick, solid, and true vertical apparatus. Thanks for your awesome reply! So wonderful to meet another aerialist turned poler. I'm going to go look for you on IG now :) My IG is @befreeand_travel
Apr 8, 2020
Corrie Paid Member
Yay! That sounds like you are off to a great start! And glad we can connect on Insta too! Veena also has a FB group and a few of us there are using to do some daily check-ins with one of the 30 day programs.

One of my favorite aerialist-who-is-also-a-poler friends, who does Cord Lisse, once said "I feel like with rope, I can bully the apparatus if I need to, but pole will not be bullied." I think its a great description.
Apr 8, 2020
Sleeping Beauty Paid Member
I'm the same! I mainly do lyra and silks but I've done hammock and trapeze some too. :)

The biggest thing I've noticed is it uses a similar muscle set. When I first started with circus arts I definitely found new muscles I'd never worked in the gym. lol Personally, I'm struggling with the skin issue. lol I've had my fair share of silk burns but for most of my training I've always worn long leggings and sometimes even a long-sleeve leo. I'm not used to having my skin stick to the apparatus.

Lots of things are transferrable, they just feel a bit different. Knee hooks, climbs, V Ups, Inversions, even the forearm sit already felt familiar for me, just slightly different. A lot of terminology is similar too so that's one less learning curve to tackle. You've likely already conquered the "fear" issue a bit too.

The weird thing that caught me off guard? The pole is cold! LOL
Apr 10, 2020
annafreitag6311 Paid Member
Corrie thanks for the suggestion for the FB group! I will have to try and find it :) And I love that analogy with the true for any of the more fluid apparatuses I suppose lol.

Hi Sleeping Beauty! Glad to meet another aerialist/poler! :) OMG the coldness on my skin has been the biggest thing for me to get used to so far as well!
Apr 11, 2020
AerialDonna Paid Member
Gday! I too started as an Aerialist many years ago - training originally in Lyra, Silks and Trapeze after being a professional contemporary dancer. Then I did some time in Vegas as a Showgirl before learning pole from a showgirl friend who PoleDanced. Start at the beginning to learn the terminology - grip - pole maintenance etc. Cold poles are not nice. Different peoples skin like different grip lotions - or none at all. You will love it
Apr 14, 2020
Corrie Paid Member
Ha! I totally forgot the cold pole thing. Yes, that is one of my not-fun parts. My hammock never asked me to warm it up. :) The pole is always cold (especially with the weather we're having now in my area!)
Apr 15, 2020
amelia2000 Paid Member
I started on pole and went on to lyra a few years ago when we moved onto a boat and no longer had space for a pole and had to train outside on the a frame.
When we moved back into a flat I could have a pole again, but now my lyra is just for fun outside, I find a standard ceiling is too low for it to be fun.
Apr 17, 2020
annafreitag6311 Paid Member
Thanks for the replies everyone! So far I really love pole!!! I started at the beginning and am excited that I can do all the beginner stuff and plenty of the intermediate stuff too :) I have not yet drifted into the advanced section yet. I've been pleasantly surprised by my reactions to the pole. I always thought it would be super difficult and very unforgiving, but I actually find it's solidness to be very reliable, unlike how fabric can be so always know exactly where the pole will be and what it will be doing lol. I love how it uses so many of the same aerial muscles, but find it to be more well rounded since there's also more pushing involved, instead of just so much pull. So happy to be on this journey with Veena and you all!
May 17, 2020
Love the instruction Veena! Your instruction helped me to safely perform this move against my pole, after I practiced against my mattress.
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