Over the last 12 years in the pole game, I’ve taught a few thousand people. In addition to hoisting asses into the air and correcting form, I’ve given 8,963,003 pep talks to nervous students all over the world. Too many of these conversations, both in person and online, revolve around one painful, heavy theme.
Shame. Shame about being a “weak,” “unsexy” or “fat” pole dancer.
There are few things heavier than the weight of shame. Shame is a dark virus that thrives on isolation and fear. It’s powerful enough to erode fun memories of dancing, and replace them with poison (“I’ll be a real pole dancer when I can do a flawless [insert insane trick]”).
Feeling ashamed of yourself is bad enough, but watching shame ravage ALL my students and fellow hustlers is really painful.
We’re hurting. The best pep talk from the best coach won’t fix us. All I can do is encourage everyone to make decisions based on adding joy, not just avoiding shame. Your pole fam isn’t asking for the best of you -- they’re just asking for you to show up. You know that sick two piece costume you fell in love with? Have you avoided wearing it because someone your size isn’t “sexy” enough for it? Wear the damn outfit. And while you’re at it, please sign up for those exotic choreo classes you swear you’ll do terribly in.
Shame will do everything it can to destroy a god time. Will you let it?
photocredit: @rozthediva via @divine.movement.dance