Last Sunday I was lucky enough to compete in my first ever pole dancing competition: Pole Addiction. This is an in-house competition put on by the individual Pole Divas studios to showcase their incredible student talent - trust me, Divas is full of stars.
I didn't win a sashie, but I can honestly say that winning would have really only been a nice bonus for me. The thrill of getting up on stage, of dancing in front of a crowd and showing off everything I have learned (including some tricks I only mastered in the week or so before competing) was more than enough for me.
Even more exciting was that I got to share it with two of my best friends and biggest fans: Pat and Hilal from Evolving Physiques.
I know I keep saying this time and time again, but these two people have been such huge, positive influences in my life, and EP was the springboard from which I leapt out and broadened my comfort zone, discovering pole dancing, weight lifting, and the confidence to plan my first ever overseas holiday. If it hadn't been for EP, my life would have looked very different.
But Pole Addiction Caroline Springs was incredible! I had struggled with putting together my routine, before I eventually managed to fix up my music so that I was dancing to the parts of the song that had lyrics and beats that I liked, without long instrumental breaks. I only really finalised it in the week prior to Pole Addiction and will confess to feeling hideously unprepared in the days leading up to Sunday. I did four nights of practice, including a run-through on Friday night, and class on Saturday went swimmingly before the bag day on Sunday.
I danced to Lightning by Little Mix, and my theme was electricity, so I spent time creating a costume that included 'wires' running down my arms and legs, and the fabulous Jen from Jen Oliver Beauty did my hair and make-up for the event, turning me into an electrifying beauty for the day.
Then I danced.
These are professional images taken by the photographer on the day, EMC Photography, who PDCS get for every event they do. These are just a selection of the best ones from my routine, and I will say I am particularly proud of my standing back bend and the arch in my anchored diva pose. I will also say that I really felt these on Monday and was ever so glad to have access to a foam roller, spikey ball and deep heat. #backbendproblems
There was a professional videographer there on the day as well, but I'm still waiting for the video. Once I get it, I'll post it up here for you all to see.
Before I sign off, there one more thing I want to say. I've had a few people say to me 'I would love to do that, but I'm not flexible/pretty/thin/strong/brave enough!' You don't have to be flexible/pretty/thin (what the hell does that word even mean, anyway?!)/strong/brave or anything else to pole dance! If you're a human being who would like to pole dance, that's the only requirement. Pole is for everyone and every body. Anyone who wants to give it a go should jump onto the Pole Divas website and find their nearest studio. Ladies, there are courses and casual classes for all levels, and gents, you're not barred from learning this amazing sport, but you will need to contact the studio directly about your options.
See you at Divas!
OMG! Pole Addiction is TOMORROW!
The best bit, though, is that there's still tickets and there will most likely be tickets on the day. Friends, family, local followers, you can still come and watch me strut my stuff on stage! Doors open at 2.45pm, show starts at 3.00pm and tickets are $15 at the door. There's limited seating, so if you want a chair you will need to get there early, otherwise BYO cushion or it will be standing room only.
The run sheet for tomorrow will look like this:
As you can see, I'm the second performer in the Intermediate Category, and let me tell you now that the standard of competition is high! Pole Divas Caroline Springs is filled with incredible dancers who can't wait to show off their routines tomorrow.
So, what should you expect on the day?
Expect to be wowed by the skills of all these amazing dancers, including instructor shows by studio owner Kristy and the one and only Dee Dee. Don't forget to clap and cheer us all on, for some of us (myself included) this is our first time competing and hearing those cheers and claps gives us a real endorphin boost.
Pole Dancing is a versatile sport, so you'll see lots of different styles - lyrical, strong, sexy etc. - as each performer brings her own interpretation to her music and theme. There is some stripping, but no nudity, and the music is low impact, with no heavy swearing. Children are welcome to attend, as Pole Addiction is a family-friendly event and many of the amazing dancers at PDCS are also mothers, so if you'd like to come along but can't find a babysitter, bring your little ones with you. There's nothing like seeing strong, empowered women bringing their confidence to the stage.
But what to expect from me?
Expect to see zig-zags and an electric theme as I dance my way between two poles to Lightning by Little Mix. Black and gold will be in abundance and, while floorwork will be scarce (I'm not a fan) there will be inverts a-plenty; my #wintersoldierarms from the EP Winter Games will even get a chance to show off as they literally hold me up off the floor. So get excited!
And, to get you even more excited, here's a little teaser from the beginning of my routine.
That zig-zag hit me like a dart...
See you tomorrow!
If you're afraid to fall it means you're prepared to brave the heights from which you might fly.
Me With No Apologies.