A call for a return to normalcy in pole

Read this, almost threw my computer with YASness. Like, I was so worked up in agreement that it turned into rage and then back to total agreement again. I’ll copy and past a lil teaser here but please check out the whole (fantastic, with videos) blog here: http://www.badkitty.com/news/when-pole-was-easy/

“Pole has gotten older and some would even say better. I remember thinking that Sara Cretul doing her twisted grip was the most amazing thing ever! Now we have, fonjis, flips, and flaming double-back spiral thingies. We have become a legitimate sport. Tara who? Fluffy skirts were replaced by slightly sexy but sensible outfits. Shoes were no longer the norm unless during Sexy Pole vs Athletic Pole vs Pole Art. Like a junkie I continued to chase the pole dragon and from time to time when I mastered a trick or danced in the dark by myself, I would feel a bit of the original rush. But the reality was it became harder and harder to replicate that high. Something was missing. Pole became a serious sport and I was still looking for simple. Pole was hard.”

^omg so much yes, right?

When I first got interested in pole, it was because of people like Leigh Ann. You guys already know how I feel about her. She danced, I couldn’t take my eyes off her. And actually, I remember thinking that the upside down stuff was kind of boring–I like watching her DANCE.

Now Leigh Ann is famous for her insanely acrobatic “Diamonds” video… a lot changes in seven years. But her old videos are just as popular, which I think says something about how we all feel about the new, gymnastic trend in pole dancing.

I won’t call it “easy,” but I miss a time when pole wasn’t so damn hard, and when everybody wasn’t routinely getting injured trying to wrench themselves into poses Ukrainian former-rhythmic-gymnasts-turned-polers did at the last whatever competition.

I associate pole with pain so much now that it’s something I have to build myself up to do, whereas it used to be something I used to really look forward to. I remember that one Leen Isabel cartoon that I can’t find really speaking to me in the winter months… it was a panel of a blustry, dark winter day outside, and then a sparkly, pink, happy studio inside (and maybe a unicorn?). That comic totally represented my feelings of walking into a pole studio after a long, boring, glitter-free day. Pole was magic. Pole was challenging, but in a fun way. Pole didn’t hurt that much, except in small, manageable doses that reminded your of your progress. (Somebody please link me to that comic if you can find it!!)

Am I just being being bitter, or are other people a tad nostalgic too?

Let’s face it, I’m not 110 pounds and have no background in gymnastics or ballet so I also feel like most of the “hard” pole stuff is just not gonna happen for me. So like, I’m just not all that interested in it for logistical reasons (on top of just being lazy and wanting to have fun.

What do you guys think?

How did you first feel about pole when you started out?


  1. Right there with ya. I do love the challenge of trying new tricks, but there are so many tricks out there these days that I have a hard time focusing on what’s worth working on vs what’s just distracting. I love freestyling and spin pole and rolling around on the floor, and I have no interest in ever learning how to fonji. So you’re not alone in feeling a bit nostalgic 🙂

  2. Amen to this. I felt the same when I read it, with less rage. I actually quit following a lot of pole stars and stick to bloggers because I want to keep enjoying pole and not feeling like a loser. At first the stars were inspiring, then they were discouraging (my fault, not theirs), so I changed my focus.

    • I actually thought of you a lot while I was writing this… your style of dance is beautiful, but I remember you apologizing a lot for a lack of tricks. and feeling like that is like… a travesty. there should be room and love for what everyone’s doing, not just the circus performers. (who I feel like have totally taken over this art form, for better or worse)

    • YES. proper dancing by my standards is at least 40% hair. This is gorgeous. Every time I see you dance it makes me rethink my anti-X factor stance because there’s definitely a goosebump quality y’all are nailing.

      Question: if I got a fog machine would it help recreate this dope lighting situation???

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