I passed my impromptu Level 1 Pole Dancing test last night, and I’m so chuffed!
There are various things about that sentence which may require clarification.
1 – Yes, there are pole dancing tests!
I doubt they’re standardised across the… err… industry(?)… but every pole-dancing teacher I’ve looked into splits their students into levels. Believe it or not, hanging upside down, six feet off the floor, by one leg, with your fou-fou on show is actually pretty challenging. This means it will be a VERY long time before I am doing such a thing, if ever. Relief all round, methinks!
2 – “Impromtu”? How so?
Well, last night was only my 3rd lesson and I hadn’t realised that the dance which I started to learn last night was actually an assessment piece which the people who had been going for 6 weeks or more had been working up to. I just merrily tagged on the end and gave it a bash.
3- Chuffed to bits? About Level 1 Pole Dancing success? …why?
For starters, it was only my THIRD EVER GO, and that’s cool. Also, it’s lovely to find out you have skills you didn’t know about. I’m picking up moves pretty quickly: I only need to see it once or twice and then I seem to be doing an ok job of replicating it, which for someone who hates dancing is quite an achievement.
Also, it’s lovely to succeed at something which really doesn’t matter and which you expected to be bad at.
With Muay Thai, I *expect* to succeed. I don’t mean that to sound arrogant – I work really hard for what small-scale successes I have had, but I expect high standards from myself in the sport and if I don’t achieve them I feel like I’ve let myself and my camp down. When I do succeed, it’s more of a sense of relief, rather than entitlement or pride, that I feel: there is quite a strong element of pressure attached to it in that sense.
Also, not succeeding usually involves being beaten up, which nobody enjoys.
So, yes, I’m chuffed to bits. Sufficiently chuffed to bits that I had to beg a total stranger for a high 5, because otherwise I just wouldn’t have felt right. She obliged me, the star.
The test itself involved performing the dance to music with the class split in two – one half performing, the other watching, whilst someone called out the moves. We hadn’t really had time to memorise the dance, so that was ok, but I would have liked to have been able to do it from memory just as a personal challenge.
I discovered halfway through that the teacher had changed one of the moves from a “reach for the stars” to a “round the round”. I wont bore you with a description, but suffice to say, I didn’t actually know what it was, so I just made something up.
Afterwards, she asked each of us to perform any moves she had thought looked a bit suspect to check we were definitely ready for Level 2. Performing my mangled version of a “round the round” was a tad embarassing till she realised she hadn’t actually taught it to me yet! I learned it anyway, so it was fine.
After she’d declared us all Level 1 Pole Dancers Extraordinaire, there was the cool down and the certificate presentation.
Yes, I have a certificate.
Yes, it’s actually on my wall.
I decided after the class to stay on and do the Level 2 class straight after, which seemed like a good idea at the time.
How much different could it really be, right?
The first thing we did was climb the pole.
This is hard. Really hard, especially when you’re sitting a bit heavy. The tops of both feet are now bruised messesand my abs are killing from trying to shimmy up and hold on. The “SqueeeeeeeeeeakBANG!” moments as I lost grip were pretty awesome too.
After that we learned various fabby techniques involving sewing two techniques together in the air, which is tricky but looks AWESOME, and by the end I was dripping sweat, had much less skin on my hands than when I started and was hungrier than a Hungry, Hungry Hippo.
But, fuck me, it was fun.
Roll on Level 2…
And please, any rich benefactors out there who want to buy me a pole of my very own, don’t worry, I could be persuaded to let you do just that.
I’m dead generous, me.