Body and Pole Bingo: Giddyup. (Also: teeny reviews on the new classes I just took!)

Photo credit to Armando at the front desk who had to painstaking verify that I actually DID go to this many classes/have this much time on my hands. Thank you!!

So here’s an optimal way to slack–I’ve been bad about blogging because I’ve been spending too much dancing!! :D!!!

Body and pole is doing “bingo” (complete with cards) where you knock out spaces on your card by completing class-taking tasks. Examples are taking class with a certain teacher, or an aerial art (pole, hoop, fabric). There’s also conditioning, flex, and time-specific tasks, like taking one before noon on a weekday, or after 8pm.

At first I was like, “whatever, I’mma do me–I don’t need a card to get my butt to class!” but honestly, seeing the progress on a card is completely addictive. I went from being like, “okay, I’ll black out 5 in a row and get 20% of a package” to “OMG I’M SO CLOSE, I can black out this whole card of 25 classes and treat my bellydance girls to a pole party!”

The promotion ended Tuesday and here’s what my card looked like:

Photo credit to Armando at the front desk who had to painstaking verify that I actually DID go to this many classes/have this much time on my hands. Thank you!!
Photo credit to Armando at the front desk who had to painstaking verify that I actually DID go to this many classes/have this much time on my hands. Thank you!!

You guys I was one space away from a free pole party. I WANTED THAT PARTY. But Brenna is a hugely popular  instructor and I couldn’t make it into one of her sold out classes 🙁

But anyway, I took SO many classes–let me quickly give you an overview of my favorites while they’re still fresh in my head.

1. Liquid motion

This one was a HUGE discovery for me. I always stare longingly at pole girls who do fish flops and slinky split transitions on the floor, but like, in the same way I longingly watch gymnasts do kips and shit on the uneven bars: beautiful, but where the hell am I going to learn that?

HERE. HERE IS WHERE YOU CAN LEARN THAT. B&P has these classes in the big rooms so you have plenty of room to roll around and make it nasty. Not only did I immediately add tons of cute, stylish moves to my repertoire, I also got a nice lowerbody workout–re: a break for my calloused, calloused hands–and they have kneepads and stuff too, so you can have all the fun of oozing around on the floor but none of the rug burn or bruises. Highly, highly recommend. It upped my pole freestyle game after ONE class. (I took this with Emily Sanderson who can do absolutely no wrong in my book, but Jeni Janover teaches it too and I’ve only heard good things!)

PS. In case you doubt the power of mixing things up a little, here’s a three-day bruise tracking photo series that documents what multiple aerial classes for three days in a row looks like.

2. Pole Level 2 with Kelly

Remember what a hard time I was having with Level 2? How every time I get there it’s a bunch of Level 3 people and it’s more a “review and combine your moves” atmosphere than “literally learn where your hands and feet go for these moves” type thing?

Yeah, Kelly’s class was a huge game changer for that. For each move she gives three versions: the straight up version (a leg hang, for instance), a way to make it harder (windshield wipers), and a way to start working towards it (leg hangs from being on your back on the floor).

I mean, I always KNEW I could do leg hangs from my back on the floor to practice placement, but when the teacher doesn’t say that out loud and I’m the only one on the floor… that shit is embarrassing! It made the hugest difference to have legitimate options for everything so I never just had to stand there, hanging my head in shame, or feeling bored with a move I already had down. Fabulous, and exactly what my morale needed. Thank you Kelly!!!

3. Flex Level 2 with Isaac

Oh jesus, here we go. So, you’ll notice looking at the picture on my card that Isaac’s face is on there. He’s in the studio for only a couple of classes–mainly advanced flex and contortion. I was really trying to fill up this card, so, I swallowed my pride and attempted an int/adv. flex class that I had no business being in.

It was…. humbling. As you’d expect any flex class to be when people are doing chin stands and split bridges. But Isaac has a really relaxed, soothing attitude to flexibility (he said multiple times during the 1.5 hour class “don’t kill yourself, we’ve got a lot of minutes left”) and gives plenty of variations to make things harder or easier. Like with Kelly, I always had something to work on, even if I couldn’t quite sit my ass on my head like some people in class 😐

Funny moment: he came over to me while I was doing a foot-grab pigeon thing and said, “Are you an aerialist?” He was adjusting my arm/shoulder placement as he said this so I immediately blushed and said, “…yes” thinking he’s noticed my muscles. “Then we really need to fix this shoulder situation.” (ie. SHOULDER FLEXIBILITY DISSSSSSS). That’ll teach me to have an ego, haha. Again, #humbling.

BUT… the class overall was an incredibly intense, focused session and I think I’ll try to start going regularly. Isaac sets a very supportive tone for everything, and has a really nice way of encouraging everyone (later that same class he moved me to a better position and said, “YES! Now that will get you in the circus!” which is quite possibly the best compliment I’ve ever gotten in a dance class ever, haha).

If nothing else, this class really inspired me to try to hold poses longer and use breathing to get into muscles I’m targeting, because it really makes all the difference when you’re pushing your absolute limits (which I was… eek!).

Okay wow this post got long… I’ll tackle reviewing another three next time!

Here’s a teaser image of a bruise I got attempted hoop level 1 for the first time!

And a video of me taking intro to fabric! (REALLY REALLY FUN, HIGHLY RECOMMEND)

OH, and the Fire Blossoms are back in action because Maki’s back from her world tour of Silk Roads! We have a show this Saturday night–here’s a sneak peek of our routine 😉

Finally… how good is the Hollaback Girl portion of this video? I literally cried. (Disclaimer: the linked video is total nonsense and has nothing to do with dancing).


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