Pole Dancing Bloggers Association

The Body: 5 Questions Answered & Asked

Human Canvas Abstract Projection by Duerring Photography CC BY-ND 3.0

The Body Is Art. What does that statement mean exactly, to you, to myself, to others? This month the PDBA asks us to explore our bodies. What moves them, what they are to us, how we express them, how we celebrate them. What is your version of "Body Consciousness"?

I spent a lot of time on this question. I wrote a lovely inspirational article, one that said all the right things, one that set up the "Body Consciousness" that people, including myself, think they should have. But for the life of me I could not hit "Publish" and then it hit me, my body was fighting writing this article, O.M.G. my body was faking it!

Secretly my body doesn't want to go to class tonight, it really wants a cheese steak, a beer and to watch Survivor Man reruns so when I ditch all of my responsibilities and run off to the rain forest I will know how to make fire and eat. Fuck my body is a cheese steak eating traitor. My body doesn't want to pretend it is as tight and light and airy as it was when it was 25, it kinda wants to put on some hammer pants and grab its snuggy and veg. My body & I clearly need to have a talk.

Triangle Connection by Duerring Photography CC BY-ND 3.0

Is that art? What's happened here? My body needs to remember all of the reasons why its amazing. And it IS AMAZING! Hopefully these 5 questions from the Speed Round can help jump start a little self love.

  • Describe your body in one word. STRONG
  • In what environment, do you typically feel the most amazing? The beach, skiing, the mountains, the beach. Yeah I live for the beach.
  • What do you love about your body and about yourself in general? That it is smart enough and strong enough. That it allows and empowers me to live, be & create a life I love.
  • What feels really good to your body? Hot Tubs, Chocolate, Sleep, Sex, Sleep, The Ocean, Sleep.
  • How does your body feel when it is dancing? Alive!

Think about what these questions mean to you. I would love to hear how you celebrate your body.

Love & Glitter,

Social Culture & Pole: What Should Pole Dancing Be?

Whenever I am writing a blog post I get so hung up on the "tags". I know that for the internet they are important but I am over them in life. There are so many different views on what pole dancing is, where pole dancing originated and what pole dancing should grow to be. Society puts enough pressures and labels on us already, I'm overthose tags, I choose to embrace these...

POLE DANCING IS LIBERATING "you can be who or what you choose with only the music and movement as your audience!" ~HD

POLE DANCING IS GANGSTA' "It pushes you to your limits and beyond. its makes you feel like you can conquer anything ... and you can!" ~Makeda Smith

The confidence makes it sexy ~Lena Fumi

POLE DANCING IS FOR EVERYONE "If we were to limit pole dance only to those who already can pole dance "perfectly," we would deprive so many people of the joy we feel when we dance. The emotions that I personally suppress in my every day life are often brought out when I dance." ~Lori Lolorashel Myers

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z-PI53028b8?rel=0]

POLE DANCING IS SEXY"The freedom of the movement makes it sexy. The undulation of a woman's hips makes it sexy. The potential for wild abandon in movement makes it sexy. The way you can slow things down or speed them up at your own leisure makes it sexy. The tease makes it sexy. The heels make it sexy. The tug at a piece of clothing makes it sexy." ~Claire Griffin Sterrett

POLE DANCING IS FEMININE

POLE DANCING IS STRENGTH "redefining what your muscles are capable of..." ~Roz Mays

POLE DANCING IS HARD "But because it is hard it is also rewarding. There is nothing like putting a move on the shelves for months because you never thought you would get it and you gave up, just to pull it out one day and find you nail it. It breeds perseverance and with that perseverance confidence. ~Pam Labratski

POLE DANCING IS"ADDICTIVE" ~Shayne Evans

I mean damn, who doesn't like swinging around a pole in 7 inch shoes? ~Veruca Blue

POLE DANCING IS MASCULINE "Masculinity has a different weight to it than femininity. The experience of holding, manipulating and creating with your own body weight that Pole requires feels powerfully masculine to me." ~Chad Everett Allen

chad & iris

POLE DANCING IS"medicine for the soul" ~Claire Griffin Sterrett

POLE DANCING IS FREEDOM "Finding the strength to let go and express ones emotions while being so exposed is freedom" ~Veruca Blue

To me pole dancing can't be or shouldn't be put into a box. It's many things to many people. I would love to hear what POLE DANCING IS to you?

Love & Glitter,

My Emotional Rescue - The Power Of Music & Movement

Photo by Blue Muse Fine Art CC BY-NC-ND 3.0

Photo by Blue Muse Fine Art CC BY-NC-ND 3.0

My first time, I remember it well. The lights were low, the room was quite - less some heavy breathing on my part. It had been an annoying day at work and I just wanted everything and everyone to disappear. Tonight needed to be all about me. I distinctly remember being in a funk that I was sure would last for days and decided on the spot to not worry about pointed toes or smooth movement or tricks or balance...and then the music came on. That night by letting go of "perfection" and not giving a shit, I had the perfect dance. While I couldn't tell you who was in the room or what I was wearing I remember with all clarity the emotions, the music and the dance. It's ironic because while it felt great for me I thought it probably looked like crap for everyone else. As my teacher screamed "SHIT that's your song - never seen that from you before!" I realized apparently my letting go resonated across the board.

From that moment on I became obsessed with music and movement. While I recognize the beauty in "perfection" I also recognize the beauty in different emotions. I realize I like to get angry and wild and sad and happy and stunted and loose and free and large and full and small and dirty. In realizing what moves me isn't always perfect or clean, my definition of "dance" has become less narrow.

Numerous studies show a strong coloration between emotions and movement. The word emotion stems from the Latin "emovere" which means "to move out". De Rivera’s A Structural Theory of Emotions suggests "When we examine individual f.t motions they reveal different types of movement and these different types suggest that an emotion is not an isolated entity, but rather part of a system that governs object relations..." (De Rivera, 1977 p.12). Our emotional experiences reflect our relation to the world and life around us.

What moves you? Which emotions does your body want or rather need to express?

I would love for you to share your first time with me. The first time you REALLY felt your dance, the first time you were completely out of your head and fully in your heart, the first time you truly felt the emotionality of movement.

Love & Glitter,

*various forms and styles of movement that I love!

[youtube=://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAqzpDwIq_M&w=854&h=480]

[youtube=://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2SMmL6kIx-w&w=854&h=480]

[youtube=://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4EklN7_lQ8U&w=854&h=480]

[youtube=://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DpVfF4U75B8&w=854&h=480]

[youtube=://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8xwPBCx08I&w=854&h=480]

735f5-img.png

Gender, Men & The Art Of Pole: It's A Mans World - Or Is It? PT2

Photo by Jar Alcala

By Chad Allen

My exploration of pole dancing began almost two years ago following a 20 year plus professional dance background as a performer and now choreographer.   Pole dance was something I was always intrigued and intimidated by.  Dancing for the purpose of expressing sensuality, sexuality and eroticism was something I could hardly imagine a person could feel free enough to do.  I assumed this was largely a bias coming from my dance background where technique and correctness were synonymous and using dance and eroticism in the same sentence was a different kind of professional. Now I'm not so certain it was my dance background that I had to overcome, but more an insecurity as a man, that made pole and sensual dance so intimidating.

As a student of a studio that embraces men in pole classes I have to say I have never been anything but supported both in my desire to be in class and my presence in class.  I do make a specific point to introduce myself to all the women so that they know that I am there in support of their own journey.  The studio environment, staff and client, is extremely friendly and extremely supportive. What I have come to observe and I offer here is a subconscious expectation of men, or possibly a lack thereof.

The journey of breaking through the fears of being, and being seen as, sensual, erotic, beautiful and powerful may be a consideration for women that is not quite appreciated for men.  Men are afraid of exposure too.  It seems women almost expect men to be strong.  We're given permission to excel at tricks faster than women but I've noticed that women are less intrigued or sensitive to the journey of men when it comes to the eroticism of the dance as they might another woman. And maybe this is where we are all the most afraid, women and men alike.  I suspect it's the greater discomfort for everyone in the room.  We can watch someone struggle with a shoulder mount much more than we can watch them struggle with finding their own sensuality. But I wonder what is being lost when we don't.

I can say men, including myself,  use strength not because it's so natural but as a distraction from our own fears, especially our fear of "is this sexy?" or  "am I sexy?" I've seen many male pole dancers scale a pole about as sexy as the cable man and people still applaud the trick where I am quite confident the same forgiveness would not be given to a female pole dancer.  I have definitely heard it being instructed in class by our amazing teachers; it's not simply about getting to top of the pole, it's how you get there. I do think women really do want a man to climb to the top of the pole with sexy sensual deliberation, but maybe they are afraid to expect it.  And men, like women,  are just scared to be bad at it.

I am so grateful that I have been allowed to explore these questions for myself in an environment where I think everyone really does care, but we may still be trying to figure out how to articulate it.   At the end of the day, when I leave pole class, I am most fulfilled by the feeling that I have made myself present to other people's journeys and that, like me, it isn't only about the trick and skills.  Being exposed to a room of people and not shrinking in the corner when you don't necessarily feel terribly sexy that day is an accomplishment that I think has bigger value than a trick, or the workout, or the calorie burn.  I get to express being a man in ways the outside world might not embrace.  Just like my fellow female dancers.

You can find Chad in Los Angeles at The Xcceleration Station

PREVIOUS - PT 1: Gender, Men & The Art Of Pole

READ NEXT PT 3 By guest blogger Danielle Giannantonio

Gender, Men & The Art Of Pole: There’s a man in my pole class.

This post is part of our entry for the “Pole Dancing Bloggers Association” Feb Blog Hop on Pole Dancing & Men

Click here to enter your link and view all the additional Pole Dance Blogs in the Hop…