Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Pole Dancing in the News: A Holiday Parade and Backlash for Pole Dancing

A small town of Jacksonville, North Carolina has been in a tizzy over a recent holiday parade where a pole studio entered a float featuring pole fitness.  From the news article online  featured on JDnews.com, The Daily News of Jacksonville, NC, reported reactions from residents appear to convey the majority of the negative responses are coming from people uneducated about the mainstream fitness aspect of pole dancing. 

Kudos to Studio 360 Pole and Group Fitness Center for their willingness to showcase adversity in fitness.  It's an important conversation to have when you have a community comprised of an ignorant population.  The only way to dispel negative stereotypes is by education.  Most larger cities in the U.S. have seen the mainstream acceptance of pole fitness as another form of exercise.  It's the smaller areas that still struggle with societal changes especially when certain activities were once deemed sinful to the church.  It's shocking that we're now in 2016 and people still think this way.  But it does happen.  As advocates for pole fitness, we must remain courteous and continue to provide education to the general public to alleviate any fears they have. Fear is a major factor when it comes to misinformation.  It's a classic case of what you don't know, CAN hurt you- not physically but has cognitive limitations in this case.  We are free thinking creatures and can formulate our own opinions.  I'd rather have the correct information before formulating an opinion personally, and I hope others would give ideas and concepts a fair chance once they become better educated on the idea. 

However, I know all too well this isn't always the case.  So I'd like to encourage others to raise awareness and not be ashamed of what fitness activities they have chosen best for their bodies and healthy lifestyle.  The bigger picture here is the fact these men, women, and children participating in pole fitness classes are MOVING.  The U.S. adult obesity rate currently exceeds 35 percent in  four states, 30 percent in 25 states, and 20 percent in the remaining states (http://stateofobesity.org/adult-obesity/).  That's JUST the adult obesity rate.  We have an uprising epidemic of childhood obesity that we have barely scathed on a health centered perspective.  Children mimic the actions of adults.  The more unhealthy of a lifestyle of their adult role model, the more likely the child will also lead an unhealthy lifestyle.  So if pole fitness isn't the ideal form of fitness activity for you, please respect that it may be the chosen activity of someone else. So step aside with your judgments and incorporate into your life the classic childhood phrase, "Mind your own business."

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Pole & Aerial 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

It's that time of the year again!  I've compiled a list of items that are perfect for the pole and aerial fitness enthusiast in your life. 

Pole Attire:
1. Always a must, never enough! Check out the new Bad Kitty Nudes collection for the avid performer or a sense of tranquility for your workouts. Pieces range from $24-$34.

2. You can never go wrong with getting your favorite poler a pair of shoes! Bad Kitty has an assortment of shoes available on their website ranging from $37-$100+.  Not a fan of ordering shoes online? You can always pick up a pair or a giftcard to your local adult novelty store that stocks Pleasure USA and Elle brand footwear. 

3. Giftcards to your poler's favorite local studio so she can get some dance time in post holiday! 

Online Membership:
4. If your poler prefers to workout at home, there are many options now available for him/her to continue their studio quality workouts in the comfort of their own home.  Cleo's Rock N' Pole site is a great site full of amazing and unique workouts.  Memberships range from $24.95 USD monthly to $199.95 annually.

Pole Fitness or Aerial Silks/Aerial Hoop Student Gift Baskets
5. Make your own pole or aerial specific gift basket full of pole and aerial specific goodies.  Items you can put in the gift basket include: Epsom Bath Salts, Grip Aids, Leg Warmers, Leggings, Facial Masks, Hair Ties, Arnica Gel for bruise relief, Chapstick, Protein Snack Bars, and/or a new Water Bottle.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Thankful November

Despite the recent political uproar within the U.S., there still are a lot of things to be thankful for this year and November.  In my personal life, I've had a very trying and medically challenging past few years.  Even though I've had set backs, I remain optimistic.  I've decided to return to what I've always loved doing as an outlet to get me through some of my darkest days. 

This month I've been taking park in the #thankfulaerialistchallenge on instagram hosted by @suspendedanimationaerials. It's been fun to get back in the air and revisit some of my favorite poses.  I've been off the silks for over a year and it surprised me how easy it was to get right back to it like I hadn't taken such a long break.  You can follow my journey through this month's challenge via my instagram @poleharmony.

Here's a couple of my favorite poses that I've submitted for the challenge:

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

November Pole AND Aerial Challenges 2016!

It's a new month and I'm ready for a fresh start on my fitness routines.  This month, a good friend of mine and former pole/aerial student turned instructor has created an online aerial silks challenge full of fun and easy poses that aerial students can work on and submit with the help of their aerial instructors or training buddies.  Please be sure to read through the rules on this one as it has a strong emphasis on training safe and all participants must be using appropriate safety measures when submitting entries.  I hope you all enjoy the fun challenges for this month.  Check out the list of what's happening in November below.

Announcing the November 2016 Aerial Silks Challenge! #ThankfulAerialistChallenge . Why should the yogis and polers have all of the fun? It’s time for a daily pose challenge for aerialists on silks! All poses are basic ones, but new aerial poses should be attempted ONLY with proper instruction and safety equipment. No instruction will be given here. A pose name and photo will be shared. If you are not sure how to execute a pose, please check with your local aerial instructor for guidance. . Our sponsor @AerialEssentials was excited to get involved! Make sure to follow them in addition to the host @SuspendedAnimationAerials . The winner will get a piece of aerial jewelry from @AerialEssentials. Check out their web site to see the 6 cool designs available! The runner up will get a 20% discount code for the @AerialEssentials site. Note, images of unsafe practices will be disqualified. . There is no Day 1 since we are kicking off on November 2! . How to participate: . 1. Follow @SuspendedAnimationAerials and @AerialEssentials. 2. Repost this image by taking a screen shot or use a repost app. 3. Share your training of the daily poses. Combos and alternate shapes are welcome! 4. Unsafe training (rigging from trees, lack of mats, etc) will disqualify entries from winning. BE SAFE! 5. Include the hash tag #ThankfulAerialistChallenge in your posts (**accounts must be public to win**) 6. Be supportive and leave “likes” and comments on the posts of other challenge participants! 7. HAVE FUN!
A photo posted by Suspended Animation (@suspendedanimationaerials) on

NEW POLE CHALLENGE for No Excuses November! It's time to step up your pole game with our hosts @sweetmscandace @titojane @gorilsynnove and @kapihuria. AND the Pole Dance Nation storefront launches at MIDNIGHT TONIGHT. So you can pole dance in PDN clothing during the challenge. PLUS ... I'm choosing 4 winners who will receive FREE PDN CLOTHING. #Repost this flyer, follow our hosts and shop at the PDN store. Remember to HASHTAG #PDNNoExcuses in your video submissions. Now let's have some FUN 🎉#PoleDanceNation _ Want to WIN POLE DANCE NATION clothing? Learn more at PoleDanceNation.com 👉🏾 Or SHOP NOW! Use discount Code #PDNNoExcuses to take 20% off your purchase. Store launches at midnight tonight. _ FIRST UP ➡️ Day #1 TITO TWIST. HASHTAG #PDNNoExcuses to submit. _ ✨Posted By PDN creator @NikkiStJohn. Hosted by @sweetmscandace @titojane @gorilsynnove and @kapihuria. Created by @yungpolemaster. _ #PoleDance #PoleDancer #PoleDancing #VOTD #PDTitoTwist #TitoTwist #Challenge #PoleChallenge #GymFlow #Fit #Fitness #Workout #Exercise #PoleDanceFitness #PoleFit #PoleFitness

A photo posted by Pole Dance Nation ™ (@poledancenation) on

#Flowvember has started! **Win £100 of @dragonflybrand vouchers** How to get involved: 1. Follow The PoleSafe Federation page on FB and Insta (@PolesafeFederation & facebook.com/PoleSafe Federation) 2.Follow Dragonfly Brand on FB and insta (@dragonflybrand & facebook.com/dragonflybrand) 3.Follow me on FB and insta (@poleathlete & facebook.com/lornawalkerpole) 4.Upload the flows each week onto insta using the hashtag #flowvember and tagging @polesafefederation 5.Have fun flowing. At the end of November, 1 person will be picked at random to receive the amazing prize from our generous sponsors Dragonfly Brand **Break downs and handy hints/tips will also be posted to help guide you through the flows** #polesafe #dragonflybrand #pdflow #poleflow #flowvemberweek1

A video posted by Lorna Walker (@poleathlete) on

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Lifestyle Blog: My Acupuncture Experience

Have you ever tried acupuncture? It's always been something I've wanted to try.  I recently got the opportunity to do just that.  Acupuncture is a form of alternative medicine derived from traditional Chinese medicine.  There are many different techniques of acupuncture.  The most common form practiced in the United States involves the strategic placement of thin needles into the skin along particular points in the body.  Acupuncture has been used for many reasons.  Most common reasons for acupuncture treatments include the relief of pain, stress, or to increase blood flow to certain areas of the body. 

In the pole and aerial world, injuries can be fairly common and can easily fall into the category of chronic conditions.  For those undergoing treatment for a chronic injury, implementing acupuncture into the recovery regimen for pain may prove to be very beneficial for the overall healing process.  I first heard about acupuncture through a support group for an issue I've been being treated for the past eighteen months.  I won't go into detail publicly as those who I have chosen to share my ordeal with have already been informed.  I do want to shed light on acupuncture and share my experience with this form of alternative medicine with my readers as I didn't know much about the process prior to my first treatment.  I will be receiving consecutive treatments the next few months as part of my overall treatment plan so I will be sharing any updates or conclusions in a future blog post where I can go more in depth.

For my first treatment, I had a basic consultation discussing any issues and reasons for treatment with my therapist.  After the consultation, we moved into a room set up like a massage room.  I also get regular monthly massages so I am quite familiar with the arrangement of the massage table.  My treatment started face down and the therapist placed the needles in my head and down my back.  The "antennas" in my head, as I found myself referring to them as, were quite a strange experience. Once the needles were all placed, I was to rest for 15-20 minutes while the needles basically "did their thing."  While lying on the table, I experienced different sensations.  Most prominent was the feeling of a general achy/tightness where each needle was inserted.  The needles are very small and there wasn't any pain during the process.  It was just an overall awareness that the needles were in place. After my first rest cycle, the therapist returned to the room and removed the first set of needles.  I then flipped over and the second cycle of the treatment was conducted down the front of my body.  This side of my body must be much more active in sensory receptors because I felt more tingling in specific muscles than I had on the back side of my body.  Again, no sensations that were perceived as painful were experienced.  The whole process was actually quite relaxing. 

After my treatment was done, I felt very similar to how I feel post full body massage.  My therapist said it is called the "acupuncture high."  I usually refer to my post massage period as being "massage drunk."  The remainder of the evening I was to take it easy.  I didn't notice any bruising or bleeding at any of the needle sites, which was a pre-treatment warning of side effects I'd read on paperwork prior to the treatment.  In conclusion, I found my experience to be very relaxing.  I felt like the treatment helped for the reason I initially went for.  I will be having more treatments these next couple months so I am curious to see if the whole process provides an improved response to my current treatments.  Only time will tell.