Fireman slides and other merriment.

I’m always looking for new and different (and inexpensive!) fitness options, when a coupon for a dance studio by my house arrived in my inbox, I promptly took advantage. This was not your ‘typical’ dance studio. Among the offerings at the Goddess Warrior Studio was chair dance, pole dance as well as some more traditional dance classes. I decided to push my comfort zone as far as possible for this situation and signed up for 4 weeks of the Thursday night beginning pole dance class.

When Thursday rolled around, I arrived a few minutes early, nervous and truthfully, a little excited for what was in store. I was dressed in black leggings and a green t-shirt, hair pulled back, glasses on. I had NO idea what to expect, but I climbed a flight of stairs to the dance studio and vowed to give the experience my best.

When I arrived, I walked into a room with 4 poles and two other women. The instructor, Diana, introduced herself and asked me if it was my first time and why I was there. I told her it was my first time and that I heard it was a good workout. Truthfully, I was kind of excited to express myself in a new way – even though I knew it could be disastrous. The other woman in the class, Sybil, had taken a similar class before. I was very relieved that there were only two other people in the room to witness my first attempt at pole dancing.

Diana started with some music and a light warm up. Head circles, shoulder circles, nothing I haven’t done before. Then she had us grab the pole. Our first trick (and yes, it was quite the trick!) was to do a fireman slide down the pole. I watched in awe as she gracefully swung her legs around the pole and slid down. I monitored my self talk (“holy cow, you will not be able to that”, “that looks so hard!”, “your arms aren’t strong enough to do that, you’re going to fall flat on your butt!”) and attempted my first fireman slide. It was SO MUCH FUN! I felt like a little kid just swinging around the playground – completely free. Diana exclaimed “you got it! That’s exactly it!.” Alright, I thought, maybe I can do this.

The class went on and we learned more tricks and did more dancing and had more fun. We laughed and joked around. It was really fun. Diana was so encouraging, yelling out “damn! that was so hot girl!” and “are you sure you haven’t done this before? you rock!” (I haven’t, really!). Diana said that she usually sees a huge difference in the confidence levels of her clients as they complete a month of class or so. I definitely held my head higher as I left class and went about my night that night. It was a liberating experience, to just let loose and have fun with something that once seemed so off limits. I can’t wait for this Thursday – so fun, despite the bruises all over my calves and thighs.

Oh yeah – it was a great workout, too.

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