You’ve been taking pole fitness classes for a few months now. When you started out, you were shy about your newfound love, but with the help and encouragement of your instructor, you have begun to come out of your shell and explore all that this amazing sport has to offer. And has that instructor ever helped you! She was there in your first class, and has helped you every step of the way, through all the awkward and clumsy moments, and cheered you on when you finally climbed the pole for the first time, or when you landed that spin.
Then it happens–you walk into your regularly scheduled class, with your regular instructor, and she’s not there. In her place is someone else. Another instructor. You know you’ve seen her around the studio, but now you are struggling to remember her name. You begin to panic. How are you going to get through this class? This instructor doesn’t know you, doesn’t know the things that motivate you and the things that hold you back. There’s no way she can teach you the way your instructor teaches you, you tell yourself.
So you resign yourself to knowing this class will be sub-par for you. You trudge through the warmups and follow along with the stretches, spins, and climbs, but your heart isn’t in it. It just doesn’t feel right. As class finishes up you feel a little bit glad that it’s over then wipe down your pole and head out to your car, giving a quick wave behind you and not bothering to socialize at all. You tell yourself as you drive away that you’ll feel better next week, when you have your regular instructor back.
Now hold on just a minute. What is wrong with this picture?
Learning pole fitness is hard. We all know that. Now think about teaching it! Think about coming into a field of work that is already judged and ridiculed by the majority of the population, and working to hold your head high, be proud of your accomplishments, and teach others to do the same. And from there, think about coming to teach a class and having the students appear less than thrilled to have you there. Sounds tough, right?
Each teacher has a unique style to them. I mean, this is why you’re so attached to the instructor you started with, isn’t it? Because you’ve adjusted and adapted to their teaching style, and when someone with a new teaching style comes in, you aren’t used to it. You have to adjust your learning style to the way they teach, which can be difficult. But how incredibly boring would pole fitness be if every teacher was the exact same, and taught in the exact same way? Each instructor has something unique to offer, and can teach you something if you’ll let them.
Just last weekend, Inversions hosted Amy Hazel Price (Instagram: @amyhazel92) from Australia. Amy is not only an amazing instructor but a truly genuine person with an incredible story to share regarding her pole fitness journey and her past struggles with body image and nutrition. I learned so much from Amy and am so excited to practice the bendy tricks she taught us in her three workshops! The main thing I took away from Amy was that if you want something bad enough, you must train hard for it. You have to put in the time and dedication to your sport to succeed, and you cannot expect to be good at something if you aren’t willing to work for it. You also must be open to other’s perspectives and learning from many different pole dancers. We all have something unique and different to offer – why not embrace those differences in each and every one of us, and see what it brings out in you?
Great pole dancers like Cleo the Hurricane, Alethea Austin, Felix Cane, Lou Landers, and Natasha Wang all had to learn different skills from different instructors to expand their knowledge and reach the levels that they have reached. These dancers are all individuals with unique personalities, but the same passion. And that diversity can be found in any pole studio! At Inversions, we have 5 instructors that are all passionate about pole and each have unique strengths as instructors. Kayla, who pushes you to maximum effort in every class. Sam, who always has a positive attitude and inspires others with her bendy tricks. Whitney, who has an amazing ability to break things down verbally. Shannon, who nails tricks on the first try, inspiring others to just take a shot at their next move or spin. Danielle, who is so talented at bringing out the sexy in all of us. And for me, my passion for pole shines through in everything I do, hopefully inspiring others to follow their dreams.
So the next time you walk into your class, and see a different instructor, embrace it! Let it change your class that day for the better, and ask yourself what you can learn from this person or take away from this class that will make you better at pole. Engage with the instructor and know that she too is working to find a balance in her relationships here also, and would love to teach you something if you’ll let her. And who knows? You might even discover that you enjoy her teaching style, and can’t wait to come back for more.