What is your favourite Apparatus?
Pole is my favourite artform because it's so beautiful yet requires so much strength. It's really fun to be able to pull off tricks that make people wonder how you're doing them. I also love how quickly you can improve and progress in pole. Every week I feel stronger than the last and I manage to nail tricks that I was struggling with just a week before.
How long have you been Pole Dancing?
I’ve been doing Pole for about 6-7 months.
Did you ever feel nervous when you first started Pole?
I tend to throw myself into things before thinking about them so when I first signed up for pole I wasn’t really that nervous until I was actually driving to the class. At that point I started to panic that everyone would be better than me or that I was wearing the wrong thing or that people would laugh at me or tell me I couldn't do it. The reality is that everyone is so concerned with getting it right themselves that no one is looking at you and if they are looking at you it’s only to help and encourage you.
How does Pole make you feel?
Pole makes me feel strong, beautiful and confident. I love the sense of achievement I get from every class and feeling like I've really worked hard, but had a great time doing it. It also makes me feel graceful, which is incredible for someone who trips over their own feet as often as I do.
Who is the Pole Dancer that inspires you the most?
I saw a video of Nicole The Pole Williams a few years ago which was what got me interested in the idea of pole dancing but it was watching videos of Roz The Diva that gave me the confidence to actually start. My instructors also really inspire me as they prove that there's not just one way to be good at pole. Each of my instructors has their own specialty - flexibility, strength, dance ability – and they've each taught me something different. My friends and classmates also really motivate me to work harder and their support and encouragement really help give me the confidence to do tricks I never thought I’d be brave enough to try.
What advice would you give someone who wanted to give Pole a try, but was a little nervous?
I've had a few friends tell me that they want to try pole dancing but they're too shy and I’ve said the same thing to all of them – that pole dancing is a really inclusive, supportive artform. The instructors go out of their way to make everyone feel comfortable and welcome and the other students are so kind and helpful. I encourage everyone to give pole a chance and everyone I know who has tried it is completely hooked.
Has Pole changed the way you view yourself?
Pole has absolutely changed the way I view myself. A few years ago I was diagnosed with endometriosis which gives me chronic pelvic, leg and lower back pain as well as extreme fatigue. Having a chronic illness made it really hard to not view myself as powerless and view my body as broken. Pole has given me the chance to prove to myself that my body can still do incredible things, my illness doesn't control me and that the pain and fatigue can't stop me from doing things that I love. It's also changed how I view myself on an aesthetic level. Dancing in lingerie in front of complete strangers is an amazingly efficient way to learn how to love and accept how your body looks!