Pole Dance and Fitness in the D.C. Area
The immortal question: Are DC women paying to watch a fit, scantily dressed woman swing herself around a pole to the sounds of Mötley Crüe?
Paying to learn, maybe. Since the mid-2000s, pole dance has become one of the fastest growing fitness movements in the world. Most of us associate impressive acrobatics and spins on a pole with strip clubs, but the pole fitness movement has moved out of the clubs and into dance studios, Hollywood films and even Cirque du Soleil.
What is pole dance class like?
As pole dance becomes more of a respected art form, studios offering classes are beginning to pop up all over. Many studios, in addition to pole dance, offer chair dance, lap dance, flexibility and strength training, and even circus acrobatics. The average pole class lasts 60-90 minutes, and takes place in your typical dance studio environment. Think ballet class, only there are around 11 poles instead of a barre, and they go floor to ceiling. Classes have as many students as there are poles — minus one for the instructor.
The instructor begins most classes by leading students through a cardio and stretching warm up, followed by a few dances in a call-and-response style — the instructor calls out a name for any of the commonly studied pole moves, and students follow along. Not your grandmother’s square dance. After the instructor teaches a few new moves, the class will either dance freely to a few songs or work on a group routine incorporating moves from the latest sessions.
Do you have to strip in pole dance class?
Pole classes don’t require you to strip — but don’t be surprised if your fellow dancers aren’t wearing much more than you’d wear at the beach. Pole dancers aren’t afraid to show skin to nail a favorite move. As the moves get harder, bare skin helps dancers stick to the pole for advanced, inverted lifts and poses. Once she finds her footing, every pole dancer has the choice to make — heels or no? Most pole studios offer students the option to dance in special high heels, typically in shoes crafted just for the profession. Many shoe brands, such as Pleasers, sell towering heels in bright, sexy colors with rubberized bottoms for a dancer’s safety. What’s more fun than buying yourself some fantasy heels in the name of workout gear?
Where do I learn to pole dance in D.C.?
If you’d like to trade in your Pumas for platforms and check out a pole session in the area, try these studios below:
In Washington D.C.:
Article by: Tini Howard, Health Editor
Health editor, Tini Howard is a writer, aerialist and foodie from the East Coast.