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As a student of pole dance, it is important to take a multitude of different classes. This includes taking classes outside your local pole dance studio.
If you live in a big city, you may have the privilege of going to different pole studios. This provides a great opportunity to learn new approaches, train different disciplines, and gain new perspectives in the pole industry.
If you live in a small town, you may not have the opportunity to take classes at different pole studios, but you will likely be able to cross-train at non-pole gyms using different modalities (weight lifting, yoga, hip hop classes, cycling, etc.).
And let’s not forget about the boom of online classes, workshops, and education offerings!
In this post, we will cover the importance of taking different classes in order to broaden your perspective, keep your body healthy, and ultimately improve your performance!
Take different pole dance classes
Branching out of your own studio is important. You never know what you will learn or gain from broadening your perspective. If your town has multiple pole studios, try taking different classes at these studios every so often.
It is also important to branch out and train with different instructors. We love our “pole mamas!” (This term is used by pole dancers to describe their first or primary pole instructor.) It’s why we take classes with them over and over… and over… again. But while one instructor may be great at teaching tricks, another may be great at teaching choreography. Think about your own pole goals and train with different instructors who will help you reach those goals.
Also be on the lookout for guest instructors coming to your area. This is a great opportunity to learn new techniques and disciplines.
Participate in cross-training
We strongly recommend taking classes outside of pole dance. This is called cross-training. Cross-training is great for your body, as it will target other muscles and body systems. For example, yoga as a cross-training tool is great for improving mobility and strengthening your muscles at your end ranges of motion, while weightlifting is great for improving strength, and cycling is great for boosting your cardiovascular endurance.
Plus, did you know that training in other modalities can actually improve your pole dancing? Research shows that training in other sports (i.e., not specializing in a single sport like pole dance) can improve performance and decrease risk of injury.
Find online classes that align with your pole journey
No matter where you live, as long as you have an internet connection, you have the opportunity to take online classes. There are endless options for both pole and non-pole online classes, and the availability of online classes has boomed since the events of 2020. Types of classes include movement-based classes, workshops, and education (seminar-type) offerings. Before searching the vast internet, think about what topics or disciplines you are interested in learning more about. Then search for classes or instructors that teach those topics and align with your pole journey and pole goals.
If you are an instructor, read more about the benefits of participating in continuing education. The online space provides many offerings for continuing education.
Hopefully, we have convinced you of the benefits of taking different types of pole and non-pole classes. No matter how you branch out or cross-train, keep the following tips in mind:
- Take care of your body and incorporate rest days. And no, taking a lower intensity pole class does not count! Actually take rest days to give your body a chance to recover!
- Pick pole and non-pole classes geared toward your pole goals (i.e., contemporary pole to improve flow, weightlifting to improve strength, or yoga to improve mobility to nail those flexibility tricks!).
- And most importantly, have FUN!