XO Jane hates pole dancers

***update*** okay, so, I cooled off, and re-read the piece, and I see now that the author had a pretty poor experience. Trying to learn something with a whole classroom of students watching ONLY YOU, while being instructed to urged to act sexier (nay, to release your “erotic creature”) sounds like the stuff of my worst nightmares.

That said… I hate that she called us a cult, and I hate that this is another voice adding to the choir of “pole dance is about amateur stripping.” HARRUMPH.



This especially disappoints me because I have written for XO Jane.


This attitude of “I’m smart and analytical, I’m so far above this stuff” really gets me. While I’m not a huge fan of the X-factor style of dance, I still feel like the author’s ego was challenged, and that was her main problem with the class. Actually TRYING? Risking looking stupid? FUCK THIS CLASS, BEING SEXY IS FOR BIMBOS.

Balls. It’s cowardly to pick on people that do a thing because you didn’t like doing it. And we’re an easy target, I get it. Let’s all laugh at the dumb sluts on poles! We’re practically the Real Housewives of the dance world. Everybody, grab your tomatoes!


Anyway, I said my piece. Now go say yours!!


  1. Gosh, I don’t know. She actually wrote about her experience (unlike a lot of these articles), and honestly that sounded horrible to me. If my first pole class had been like that, I don’t think I would be in pole. One pole? Erotic Creature? Yuck. Granted, pole has never really been erotic for me. Sexy is just not my style. Anyways, this article was way better than most disparaging pole, because it was actually rooted in experience. I hope she takes a better class sometime.

      • Also a good point. But “releasing your erotic creature?” Ugh. That definitely sounds more creepy than sexy. Everyone should just read our blogs and go to a more awesome pole studio, whether they’re after a sexy or sport experience.

        • I definitely feel like S Factor (which I’m positive is the studio she went to) is not about learning to pole so much as it is using the naughty association people have with pole as a way to explore personal sexuality. which is cool! there is room for that in the world! but it’s just… not…. a typical dance class experience, just as “sexuality exploration” is not the reason everybody poles.

  2. Didn’t seem like an intelligently written piece to me. As someone who’s new to pole dancing I can say if my first class was like this, I’d find another studio. ONE pole and multiple dancers?

    Would you form opinions about lifting weights because the gym you went to had bad, rusty equipment? At the very most this post should’ve been about the studio being crappy.

    • I think people think pole is a like zumba–whatever studio you go to, the class will basically always have the same components. This really could not be further from the truth.

      It’s not even comparable to something like ballet, where the same basic elements are always taught. Whatever the studio owner wants to focus on, whether it’s a sports-style approach or sexy-sexy-sexy is what the student is going to get.

      I get the feeling that S-Factor does the one-pole thing because its defining offering for its clientele is the opportunity to perform. There’s one pole so that, when it’s your turn, you get to be sexy in front of an audience. There’s a lot of girls who ONLY go to S-Factor, and probably wouldn’t enjoy other studios because they don’t focus on sensuality or exchanging “energy.”

      For me… I think I would rather literally be having my teeth drilled than to have to lap dance on another woman as part of a pole class. But some people love it. They live for it. And unfortunately, this specific group of people is what the author is mistaking for the entire pole community.

  3. Finally got a chance to read this. Agreed, it was S Factor, which I’ve heard is quite aggressive in its approach. I’m torn on this one because she WAS looking for sexy, but she got some next level shit tossed in too, which would turn any newbie off. I did appreciate that she said it was her experience and opinion only, and that she acknowledged pole can be hard. I blame S for this perspective more than the author. We wouldn’t throw a newbie into an advanced tricks class, so I think we should ease them into sexy, too.

    • I don’t have anything to add to this because it’s perfectly balanced and well stated, and there’s no like button on here 😉

      actually, wait I do!!! endless supply of opinions over here 😀 I think more than the actual piece, my beef was with yet another “woman friendly website” snarkily bashing chicks who dance one poles. Jezebel does it too, and it pisses me off. because, as a regular reader of both, suddenly I’m the “them” reading about myself, and it’s weird and disorienting and yes, it pisses me off. but I love what you have to say about “easing people in”… personally, I never like being forced to be sexy, so I would probably have a similar reaction if this were me 2 years ago. I guess it’s luck of the draw what kind of first experience you have, but it’s incredible how much impact it can have with whether you get totally addicted or never want to try it ever again.

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