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Pole Haus Newsletter Vol. 1, Issue 3
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A message from Jules....

Welcome to the Fall Season!  Things have been super busy at Pole Haus with Classes buzzing, Pole Parties celebrating and Pole Competitions happening!

I would like to welcome on board our two new instructors Faye and Laura.  Faye is a power haus (!) who trains hard and executes strong moves with precision, while Laura has a vast dance background with a strong performance history.  Both of them are passionate about Pole Dance and we are so excited to have them on board!

It has been a busy few months with many students competing in a variety of competitions.  Blair and James represented Pole Haus at the Titans of Pole Championships in Maryland and both secured 2nd Place in their respective divisions.

We had 7 representatives (4 instructors, 3 students) in the USPDF Competition in New York with all competitors displaying amazing performances!  Jacqui, Veronica, Makeda, Faye, Aimee, Allison and Linda performed their hearts out.  Aimee secured a 2nd Place in the Novice Artistic Division as well as instructor Jacqui placing 6th and gaining her PRO STATUS in the Amateur Division!  SO MUCH INSPIRATION!  If you have ever wondered what it is like to prepare for a competition, read about Blair's competition experience below!

I am just so proud of all our competitors' effort and dedication that they have put into these Competitions - to their credit, they took the challenge and made it look flawless.

We also held a Pole for Partners Workshop where members were invited to bring their significant others/friends to experience a Pole Dance Class with them!  It was fantastic to see everyone get so involved and really experience what a Pole Dance Class involves! (Now they know why you spend so much time at the Studio!).

Pole Haus student Caitlin Cantor wrote a fantastic article that was published by 'Psychology Today' highlighting the ways that Pole Dancing can improve your life.  Read the full article below in this newsletter.

Further on that note, Pole Haus was featured in the Philadelphia Inquirer in an article on new and exciting ways to get fit!  Thanks to Alexandra Villareal for taking class and writing a great piece.  You can check it out by clicking on this link:
http://www.philly.com/philly/entertainment/20160819_Why_I_skipped_yoga_and_embraced_three_new_ways_to_get_fit.html​ 

We are now offering Private Lesson Packs (5 and 10 Packs) for people interested in taking a more personal and tailored approach to learning about Pole Dance.  Find out more about this on our website at http://www.pole-haus.com/pricing.html

To those of you who have not tried Pole Dance yet, now is the time - our Introductory Month Special for new members is only $55, this gives you access to our Pole Classes, Tempt, Flex, Conditioning Classes and Flow! 

If you have a group of friends/friends/colleagues that you would like to have a Pole Party with, check out our Party Packages online.

There is always something in the works at Pole Haus (stay tuned for Workshops).  Keep an eye on our website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts so you don't miss out.
 
See you soon! 

 

 

                                                                       Pole for Partners Workshop         
             
                 

                                         
                                                            
                                                                    USPDF Competitors represent           

Instructor Spotlight - JAZZY
Astrology Sign: Cancer
Favorite Pole Move: Pegasus and it's variations
Advice for the beginner pole dancer: Practice patience, take your time, don't compare yourself to others.  It WILL pay off!
Favorite Pole Dancer: Kehong
Which celebrity do you get mistaken for?  Used to be Rihanna, now it is Kimberly Elise or Teyana Taylor
How do you have your coffee?  Depends on my mood....usually black
Secret Celebrity Crush: Bill Murray
Favorite Food:  Rice
What should someone NOT cook for you: Pickles
Favorite Song? Since I've Been Loving You - Led Zeppelin 
Favorite Vacation Destination?  Isla Ometepe, Nicaragua
Advice for the advanced pole dancer: Make sure you nail the basics, clean lines, keep it fluid - it ain't always about the tricks
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION!
Breaking into Pole Competitions by Blair Ballin

I was hesitant to sign up for a competition. Pole Haus has always been a safe place, filled with support and familiar faces. A competition would mean stepping out of that safe space, and who knew what lies beyond? Still, seeing Jacqui’s Atlantic Pole Competition video gave me the competition bug; Titans of Pole was opportunity to give competing a try in a smaller setting.

I had 4 months to prepare. After the struggle to find “the perfect song” (a 1 month endeavor), choreographing “the perfect routine” was made easier by breaking my song into parts. After choreographing the first half I had a private lesson with Jules for some much-needed cleaning. I was initially wary of Jules’ 2 pages of notes, but incorporating her feedback helped grow my confidence in the routine (plus it looked significantly more bad-ass). After a month of practicing I choreographed the second half, spending a month practicing before a final private lesson with Jules. I tried to make at least 4 Pole Practices per week. My goal was to have everything choreographed with one full month just for run-throughs; Alfie’s goal was for me to perform as many full run-throughs in front of an audience as possible. 

The day-of, my worst fears were realized: everyone had been pole dancing for a minimum of 3 years, this was certainly NOT anyone else’s first competition. Worse, NO ONE had heels on. Some girls’ costumes and makeup looked like they were ready for a Lady Gaga music video. Despite my trepidation, the environment was immensely supportive. One girl helped with my false eyelashes (I wore 2 sets – she wore 5), everyone wanted to know my studio and Instagram. When I won 2nd place the support from complete strangers was unlike anything I had encountered during 10+ years in gymnastics.

Despite my obsessive practicing and competitive nature, I found pole competitions are more than anything a chance to have fun, share with friends and family how hard you’ve worked, make new friends in faraway places, and to see up close how supportive and loving the Pole Haus family truly is. I could not have gained the confidence I did without all of Pole Haus, especially James Langel going through this journey with me, Alfie’s critique and demands for me to practice with an audience, and Jules’ hours of coaching and support – thank you all!


                                         
 
What is in your Pole Bag?

We asked our student Nicole T what she keeps in her Pole Bag that she brings to every class.  As you can tell, she is very prepared for any dance situation!

"In my Pole Bag I always carry: Pole Haus Tank Top, Pole Haus Booty Shorts, an extra crop top and booty shorts, pole grip, t-shirt, knee pads, Pleaser heels, water, hair ties and deodorant."

Thanks Nicole!
 

5 Ways Pole Dancing Can Improve Your Life
by Caitlin Cantor  - LCSW,CST Modern Sex

When I first heard about pole dancing fitness classes, I was instantly intrigued. The naughtiness appealed to me, as so many naughty things do. I also loved the idea of dance-fitness classes because I love to dance but I have no dreams of ever becoming a professional dancer. A low-pressure, fun, dance-fitness environment sounded like a perfect fit!

Despite my interest, it was a while before I tried a class. I worried that I was too out of shape, too uncoordinated, too old or too weak to try something like pole dancing. I made up stories that people who did it had insane arm strength, backgrounds in dance, and were in great shape, none of which was true for me. It’s easy to make up stories when we’re thinking of trying something new, convincing ourselves not to go for it.

All of the stories I made up stemmed from fear and not from facts. I had not tried a class, not spoken to anyone who had, nor had I read anything about pole classes. Despite my fears and my very convincing stories, the urge to try pole dancing classes continued to get stronger.

I began to read about pole dancing. I read that people can begin pole classes regardless of size and level of fitness.  I read that you don’t need prior experience to try it. I decided to make these my new stories, thereby supporting myself in doing what I really wanted to do.

Soon enough, I showed up for my first beginner’s class at Pole Haus, a pole dancing studio around the corner from my office. At first, I felt nervous and unsure of what to expect. Sixty minutes and a LOT of sweat later, I was hooked!

It turned out that none of the negative stories I was telling myself were true. The beginner’s classes are meant for people with no prior experience. They’re a chance to build strength, not a place to go when you’ve already got it. People of all shapes, sizes and fitness levels attend. All genders are welcome at Pole Haus, though I know there are some studios that only allow women. At Pole Haus, there are both participants and instructors of all genders. Pole dancing, in general, is not just for women, and it’s a treat to have everyone participating together!

Pole dancing has become an incredibly important part of my life and general well-being. It provides a supportive space to move my body, to feel my body, and to celebrate my body, just as I am.

Movement is the opposite of being stuck. When we’re sad, depressed, anxious, and feeling stuck, our bodies manifest those emotions. Our bodies become tense, tight, and our breath becomes shallow. Movement becomes much more difficult, or can even stop. Pole classes provide a supportive space to move all parts of your body.

The more we move our bodies, the more we can move out of our stuckness; our depression; our anxiety. Movement is actually a tool or resource we can use to get un-stuck; to create space for energy and emotions to flow. We can move from a place of tension and tightness, to embodying feelings of joy, strength, and hope. 

For these reasons and more, pole dancing is empowering!

The following is a list of ways pole dancing can improve your life:

1. Celebrate your body as it is right now. Pole dancing classes provide a space to move your body and to enjoy how it feels to move, regardless of what you look like, or think you look like. When we feel good in our bodies, it’s easier to look at ourselves and like what we see. In pole classes, you get to look in the mirror while moving your hips and doing your dips, staring your imperfections in the face, and to think, wow, I look hot!

Some fitness activities focus on goals, and feeling better about ourselves if and when we reach them. This can lead us to focus on what we don’t like about our bodies, and keeps us from feeling good about ourselves today. Pole dancing classes are a chance to enjoy your body as you are right now.

2. Quiet your inner-critic. While dancing, you’re too busy moving, feeling, and focusing on choreography to pick yourself apart inch by inch. This makes being self-critical actually difficult. How many activities can we say that about?! It’s a fun way to practice being mindful, embodied, and present, and to give your harsh inner-critic a break! The more you practice being present and mindful when it’s easy (or at least easier because your mind is focused differently than usual), the more accessible mindfulness skills are when you need them the most.

3. Connect with your sensual self. Pole dancing classes give us a chance to get in touch with our sensual selves. This part of us can easily get pushed aside in our daily, fast paced, high pressure lives. Sometimes we forget we exist below our necks. We are all sensual beings. We all experience pleasure physically, deeply, and with all of our senses. When we intentionally take time to move our bodies, as we do in pole dancing classes, we make space for our sensuality to resurface; we connect with it, and can enjoy the way it feels to move, breathe, and to touch ourselves. When we don’t make space to connect with our sensuality and embrace it, we’re living our lives without acknowledging a huge portion of our experiences: our pleasurable physical experience. Without that, we miss out on a beautiful part of our humanity.

4. Live your own life. If you’re being held back because you don’t believe you’re in some way good enough to pole dance, you’re letting societal messages dictate how you live your life. As I shared in the beginning of this blog post, I did that for a while before getting beyond it. Choosing to try something that interests you, despite the stories you’ve been told about why you shouldn’t or can’t, is a way to truly live your life for yourself.  There are many role models who have been told they couldn’t do something, but decided they could anyway. You can be your own role model, and do something that you want to do, despite all the reasons you’ve been told you can’t (and all the reasons you’re telling yourself too!). 

5. Find community. When you begin pole dancing classes, you will probably take beginners classes, so you’ll be among fellow beginners. You’re all struggling the same way. You’re all worrying about the same things. You’re all facing similar stories that you’re telling yourselves or have been told. And, you’re all still showing up. Already, you have a lot in common. By going to pole dancing classes, you can meet new people, talk about techniques, talk about how people in your lives react to your interest in pole dancing, etc. When you find a place that you like to go, where the same people keep going, you get to know each other. It’s an opportunity for connection and to find community among fellow pole enthusiasts.

It’s important to note that pole dancing is just one vehicle that can help you connect more deeply with your authentic self, celebrate your body, connect with your sensuality and feel more alive. Pole dancing gives me what I need to do this, but it took me a long time to find my way there. For you, it may be a different form of dance, or perhaps it is yoga. I’ve tried other activities and enjoyed them, but ultimately it is pole dancing that does it for me.

If after reading this, you still don’t think pole dancing is for you, that’s ok! Finding what your vehicle is might be a process, just as it was for me. It is important to know that embracing yourself, in your entirety, as you are so far and right now, is vital to your well-being and quality of life. I highly recommend going on a journey to find what can become your practice, to regularly connect with your body and all parts of yourself, and to let those parts of you shine and empower you.

View the article at https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/modern-sex/201609/5-ways-pole-dancing-can-improve-your-life

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