Learning that swinging style

Another instalment in the ever-popular Winter Weight series.

If pull ups and dancing had a baby, it would look shockingly similar to pole dancing – it’s about supporting your body weight and moving gracefully.

This means I have two things to work on for this month – pointing my toes and increasing my shoulder strength.

While shoulder strength and pointing toes seem to come from polar opposites of physical activity, grace and strength often come together, whether in the ring or on the stage.

Watch Bruce Lee and you’ll see grace and strength in one, yellow-with-black-striped package. Or look at Mohammad Ali, he of the butterfly and bee fame.

It takes strength to be graceful, believe me. I can swing around a pole as well as any child, with a running start and my legs akimbo, but try doing that slowly, moving every part just so. It’s difficult.

Training fine motor skills in the beginning sure helps though, but put the two together and it seems like you have to have more strenght to hold yourself up while focusing elsewhere, like on your floppy feet.

Plus, it doesn’t look good when you flop against the pole like a fish three weeks out of water.

Add you spinning around on your axis to the mix and things can get a little disoriented.

So, square your shoulders, point your toes, grab the pole and get swinging, because whatever your thoughts on pole dancing, swinging around a pole is fun.

You know that.

Tell me you can see a pole and not grab it and swing from it. It’s like seeing a low hanging bit of ceiling and not jumping up to touch it i.e. impossible. I’d like to see you try.

It’s something deep in the psyche of humans, right up there with hunting and making a family.

There’s a lot of ideas about what pole dancing is and sometimes that may help and sometimes it may hinder, but if you ignore the incredulous looks of friends or the displeasure of your ancient, teetotaler aunt, and get down to it, there’s a lot of pure, five-year-old-on-a-snow-day fun to be had from tossing your body around a pole.


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