From the benefits of pole classes to what to wear and several other tips, check out our pole fitness guide to achieve all your new year fitness goals!
Need to find a way to stay fit while having fun at the same time? Try pole fitness! A mashup of pole dance and fitness, it’s a new and unique way to work out and get in shape, all while enjoying yourself! And even though it still has a social stigma and is considered quite risqué, the way people see it is changing every day.
But since when have we ever cared about society’s rules, especially when it comes to something that makes us fit and sexy while being enjoyable? Working out doesn’t get more fun than this. But fun doesn’t necessarily mean easy. Like with other types of fitness, they need a lot of hard work, dedication and strength. So let’s find out what pole fitness is and how to get started!
What is Pole Fitness?
No longer just a sexy dance style, acrobatics done on a vertical metal pole are now a huge part of mainstream fitness trends. Pole and fitness go hand in hand in this combination of gymnastics, aerobics and pole dance and involves propelling weight around a pole. Yes, it is as fun as it sounds! Pole exercises focus mainly on flexibility, strength training, and endurance.
Pole Fitness Basics
It’s quickly growing in popularity as a form of exercise. There’s classes for it worldwide and some pole dance fitness lovers even have poles in their homes! From poses and spins to floor work and dance moves, there’s tons to learn and discover in pole fitness. Not just that, it also helps to burn fat, tone the body, make you feel confident and just make working out more fun! And the best part? Anyone despite their gender and age can go for it!
Pole Fitness vs Pole Dance
Although the two sound very similar and have similar characteristics, they’re poles apart (pun intended!). Pole fitness is more like a sport or a proper workout activity whereas pole dance is a sensual type of dancing. In pole fitness, the pole is used like a fitness equipment while it’s used almost like a prop in pole dance. And pole exercises are for those who want to workout and incorporate a healthy lifestyle, whereas pole dancing is done purely for entertainment.
Benefits of Pole Fitness
Apart from being super fun, pole and aerial fitness also has many health benefits!
1. It’s the best way to lose weight and keep your body toned. Pole fitness workouts require a lot of strength and are usually upper body intensive, so expect to see great results in your arms, shoulders and abs. Upper body movements are also important for working women with sedentary lifestyles, who often get sore neck or backaches as a result.
2. Pole fitness involves lots of leg extensions, splits, twists and back bends. This helps the body become more flexible. Some poses like splits and twists resemble standing side crunches or standing leg-raises, which help burn belly fat and are important to get a flat tummy!
3. It’s a great aerobic activity and also helps increase the metabolism rate, which means you don’t have to feel too guilty after satisfying your chocolate cravings!
4. Pole dance fitness is also a fun cardio. It increases the heart rate and also makes the muscles stronger. Cardio is also one of the most important parts of weight loss.
5. Pole classes combine so many exercises that it becomes an all-in-one full body workout!
6. And last but certainly not the least, working out will never have to feel like a task again ’cause that’s how enjoyable it is!
Pole Fitness for Beginners
Start by taking up a beginner level pole class to know and understand the basics. Back hook, basic straddle, side spin, crucifix forward hold, corkscrew and sword are some of the more easier pole moves. Once you master them, everything else becomes easier as they’re all variations of these fundamental moves. Then move on to higher levels that deal with advanced techniques like spins and tricks. And lastly, don’t give up. Pole workout classes are hard but the end results are so worth it!
But if you can’t find regular pole fitness classes near you, you could just buy a fitness pole and practice from the comfort of your own home by joining an online pole exercise class. Fitness poles are now easily available for purchase online. All you need to do is find a good place to install it!
Start with basic flex exercises for about twenty minutes to stretch your muscles and warm up. Then begin with some easy poses that will help you get started on your pole fitness journey. Here are some beginner level pole fitness poses to practice and perfect:
One of the most basic pole poses, all it requires you to do is stand beside the fitness pole, hold it and bend backwards until your head almost touches the ground. Great for the back muscles! And also helps improve posture and flexibility.
As the name suggests, stand beside the pole and hook one leg over it. And make sure to keep those toes pointed!
Hold the pole with both hands, jump into a position that puts the pole between your knees and start climbing upwards. This may be a bit hard at first but practice makes perfect!
Once you’ve learnt how to climb a pole, this pose should be a piece of cake. All you gotta do is climb up to pole, and stay in a seated position with one leg crossed above the other.
Similar to a pole sit but without using hands for support. Balance yourself with the pole between your legs and stretch one leg outwards with your toes pointed.
If you’ve mastered the art of pole sitting, this shouldn’t be too difficult. It’s basically spinning around the pole while you’re in a fairy sit position.
This spin involves holding the fitness pole with both hands and kicking your legs upwards in a fan motion.
Inversion Pole Fitness
Pole inversions are one of the most difficult moves in pole fitness but they’re also the ones that have the most benefits. They strengthen the arm and abdomen muscles as the rest of your body is off the ground. The move is exactly what it’s name suggests – inverting yourself on the pole. It has many styles and variations but the basic idea is to hang upside down on the pole using just the hands as support. More advanced pole inversions even have poses that use just the legs to hang from the pole. These help tone calf and thigh muscles.
Power Pole Fitness
If you want to see quick results, power pole fitness is for you. They are high intensity workouts with exercises that target every part of the body. Which means, they also require more strength and endurance. So, this is something that wouldn’t be recommended for beginners. Power pole fitness classes are usually between one to one and a half hours.
Pole Fitness Clothes
Pole fitness wear usually consists of bare minimum clothing as skin to pole contact is a must. You just can’t have your arms, legs and stomach covered or you will most likely slip and fall. So, yoga pants or tights are a complete no-no as they’d make it hard to get a grip on the pole. Shorts are perfect. Similarly, no full or even half sleeved tops, sleeveless tank tops and sports bras would be great. Also, fitted clothes are ideal as there are lots of spins and turns involved in pole dance fitness. The last thing you want is for your clothes to get in the way.
You should also make sure to not put on any lotion, moisturizers or oils on your hands, legs or any other part of the body that may come in contact with the pole.
So that was our guide on pole fitness, what to know before you join a class and what pole fitness apparel to choose. What are your thoughts on it? Will you be giving it a try? Let us know by tweeting @shilpa1ahuja! 😀
Also, check out:
– Aerial Yoga: All You Need to Know About Anti-Gravity Yoga
– Prana Yoga: The Benefits of Breathe Yoga & A Beginner’s Guide
– A Complete Guide to Bikram Yoga & Its Benefits, 26 Bikram Poses
–Iyengar Yoga: A Complete Beginner’s Guide to Benefits & Postures
–Power Yoga: A Complete Beginner’s Guide to Benefits, Poses & More
–Guide to Om Yoga | Your Gateway to Meditation & Stress Busting
– Guide to Shakti Yoga | Release Your Inner Goddess of Strength
Nishita is a Staff Writer/ Journalist at ShilpaAhuja.com. She is a graduate of National Institute of Fashion Technology and has a degree in leather design. A lover of all things fashion, she writes about everything from beauty, hair and lifestyle to fashion trends and how-to’s. Her area of expertise is outfit ideas but being fresh out of college, she also loves writing about college fashion. Her new found love of baking is currently taking over her life, making her write about all things chocolate and easy recipes. With a flair for sketching and a great eye for detail, she’s previously designed leather garments for brands like Diesel and Salsa. When she’s not writing, she’s busy reading extremely sappy Nicholas Spark’s novels, sewing clothes and listening to some indie rock. Also super passionate about photography, she loves portraits and wildlife photography – a habit turned love that formed with the amount of traveling she did as a teenager. As a girl who grew up with books and movies like Pride & Prejudice, her love for period fashion is huge. And being curly haired, she’s always on a constant hunt for solutions to problems that come with having ringlets and loves sharing them with people through her articles. For feedback and questions, email [email protected] or connect with her on twitter @ni95.