You might imagine strippers sliding up and down a pole with dollar bills tucked in their underwear when you think of pole dancing, but it’s so much more than just a sexy workout — it actually takes some incredible muscle and skill if you want to look amazing doing it.
So we challenged ourselves to learn just how hard it is to pole dance — for both women AND men.
To find out, we sent our writers to Smoke & Mirrors Pole Fitness in Orange County, California, which was established in 2011 by duo Stacey Craven Gamble and Christina Jondle, two former cast members of “Girl Next Door: A Pole Dance Soirée”.
Our instructor, Lola Singer, began pole dancing at 41 and first competed in the Pacific Pole Championships at the age of 45. As Smoke & Mirror’s Most Valuable Teacher of 2015, she showed us that nothing is impossible.
We’ve never pole danced before in our lives, so we started out by trying to copy the moves. Note: Prepare your lats and core for a workout.
In pole dancing, the pole can be static or it can spin — this is what happens when it spins:
Almost every pole dancing routine has floor moves — we did the flirt, straddle and prance.
Then we did some really “sexy” hip moves.
Some of us may have enjoyed it more than others…
How could any average person not think this is fun?
Pole dancing requires a really strong grip that takes time to develop — it’s almost like relearning how to use your hands.
We also learned the most important rule in pole dancing:
While pole dancing can be done by both men and women, we learned it’s way more difficult for guys to be sexy dancing — unless, of course, you are someone like Steven Retchless or Magic Mike.
It took a few tries but eventually we got the hang of it.
Then Lola started showing us the hard stuff — she was the Level 3 Masters Champion at the Pacific Pole Championship in 2015.
This move is called the “invert to chopper.”
With a little bit of help, nothing’s impossible.
Some of us might have even been born to pole dance.
Our verdict? Pole dancing is WAY harder than it looks and you will definitely leave with some bruises if you go hard, but so worth trying at least once.
We definitely gained a newfound respect for anyone talented, strong and sexy enough to pole dance for a living.