When Bad Kitty® asked me to write an article on poling at an older age I was slightly verklempt. I wondered – at 48 am I that old and how much of an effect on pole dancing, aerial or exercising in general does age have? I like to believe that everyone at any age can achieve their goals, that age is just a small factor and that we shouldn’t use age as an excuse. Then I remembered the time I fell…
I fell out of a hammock while standing up in it. Not from doing a trick, not from exhaustion, not from lack of skill or knowledge or strength but because, wait for it…I got dizzy from a hot flash! So not cool. I played it off as if I lost my balance and fell, which is partially true, but really the hot flash threw me off. Clearly I’d rather pretend to have lost my grip than own up to hot flashes. What does that say about me and my attitudes towards age. And what are our attitudes towards older polers?
As a studio owner I embrace all sexes, sizes, colors, sexual preferences, and ages in all of my students and yet I don’t seem to embrace my own age. And by embrace I don’t mean own. I own my age and I’m proud of it. What I really mean is I don’t honor my age – it’s something I’m working towards everyday. Americans tend to honor and embrace youth much more than our “elders”. While I fully believe we can do anything we set out to at any age, for most of us our bodies at 40, 50, 60 etc are extremely different than they were in our 20’s or even 30’s. It’s important to recognize and honor this fact.
There’s nothing wrong with these differences. some people may actually be in better shape now than they were before (poling can have that effect). But still, there are things that we can and should recognize and do to honor our age and to continue to have a healthy pole life into our later years.
Reasons To Continue Or Start Pole Dancing At An Older Age:
You’ve had more time to learn your body’s likes and dislikes.
Hopefully you have more of a disposable income than you did in your youth.
Pole dancing is an amazingly fun, and a full body workout including cardio, stretching and strength training.
While pole dancing is a great form of exercise it feels more like a party than a work out!
Pole dancing is a great way to safely express feelings or emotions that you may not of been ready to express when you were younger.
Pole dancing can be as hard or as gentle of a workout as you want it to be.
Pole dancing is extremely social – you will meet some your best friends on your journey.
Some Things To Consider As An Older Poler:
Typically as we age recovery time is extended.
While warming up and stretching at any age is necessary, it is extremely important as we age.
It may be harder to regain strength after surgery or after being away from your practice for a bit. Don’t get disappointed you will regain your strength back!
Tips For The Older Poler:
Stretching, ice and heat are your friends.
Supplements can be a great addition to your practice. Talk to your doctor about what will work best for your body.
Embrace baths with Epsom salts.
Eat as clean as possible but don’t sweat the occasional treat – everything in moderation!
Drink as much water as possible.
Be gentle with yourself physically and emotionally when needed.
Make sure to cross train. By embracing other forms of exercise your body will be stronger and you won’t tend to burn out.
Don’t compare yourself to others in your class or to Pole Stars. It’s really not a competition and it’s definitely not a race. It’s your own personal journey – enjoy the ride. That being said, check out this article by UPA on 13 ‘Bad Azz’ Pole Dancers Over 50 Years Old!
Set your own pace. Don’t worry if you can’t do a Fonji. Do what you do best, the rest will follow.
Take pictures and video. They are a great tool to see how far you’ve come.
Embrace relationships with younger polers. They are inspiring to us as we are inspiring to them.
I’m strong so my instructors push me but sometimes my body really can’t do a move or the move scares me to pieces. Always make sure to talk to your instructor about any physical or emotional concerns you may have.
Listen to you body and give it an appropriate amount of rest time in between workouts.
Most importantly honor and embrace your age!
All of these tips are applicable to polers, aerialists and athletes of any age. While there are differences in sports when you are older the differences aren’t insurmountable. Just remember to listen to your body and soar with your heart.
*Are you an older poler? I would love to hear from you with any stories, questions or tips about your pole journey!
-Love & Glitter
*previously on Bad Kitty USA News