Poles of fun for young, old

DESPITE its stripper stereotype, pole dancing is on the rise, according to Canterbury’s Pole Fitness Studios owner Angela Perry.

Winner of three Local Business Awards, Angela has been operating her business for 13 years and says there has definitely been a shift in attitude, saying there are more businesses springing up like hers that are all about fitness and do not have the adult dance component.
“This is really pleasing to see since the adult industry has only been around about 30 years where as the aerial and circus arts and pole arts industries have been around from hundreds of years,” Angela said.
“It’s all about educating the public as pole dancing can change your life increasing strength and tone as well as improving self-confidence and body image.
“There are over 100 tricks to learn in my classes including climbing, flipping, spinning, handstands, cartwheels and leg locks and holds so it is challenging but very rewarding as you master the moves.”
Research at The University of Western Australia has also found that many women are finding great benefits for their mental and physical health.
Dr Joanna Nicholas, from the UWA School of Human Sciences, said she was drawn to studying pole dancing because it combined fitness and dance but still had mixed perceptions.
“Pole dancing has evolved from both Eastern and Western influences. Eastern influences include Chinese and Indian pole which date back centuries, and more recently in Western culture within striptease and exotic dancing which is what many people associate it with, and which initially limited its uptake as a legitimate form of exercise,” Dr Nicholas said.
“Pole dancing is unique as it combines three forms of exercise – cardiovascular fitness, muscular strength and flexibility – so it’s a good choice for achieving different types of exercise in one work out.”
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