• andrew farrall

I had wanted to try pole for a few years, but kept putting it off thinking I would lose some weight

Updated: Mar 9, 2019



What made you start pole fitness ?


I had wanted to try pole for a few years, but kept putting it off thinking I would lose some weight

first as it would be too hard. Then I found an old to-do list/bucket list in my bag last year with things

like pole and burlesque on it, and realised the list was 5 years old and I was just using my weight as

an excuse not to try new things. I decided then, no more excuses, I would get cracking with ticking

things off the list!





What was your first class like ?


I actually started my pole journey at a studio near Manchester, after googling for studios near work.

I found one that was offering a discounted beginners course... then spent a week deciding whether

or not to book on it! I messaged the studio and told them I would be rubbish as I couldn’t lift my own

body weight but they assured me everyone thinks that.

On the night, I went straight from work so got there waaaayyyyyyyy too early and super nervous (with my

new pair of men’s shorts that I had to buy especially for the class), not knowing what to expect. We

started with a warm up (which was bad enough as I hadn’t exercised properly in months!) then

moved on to the poles. As the class was really big, we shared 3 to a pole, which in a way was good

as you got to know the students you were sharing with, plus you got chance to rest!

We started on static poles doing “simple” moves like standing pose, chair spin, fireman and firelady

(not that I knew any of the names!), then moved onto doing the same kind of moves on spinny pole.

Before the class I didn’t even know that you could switch between static and spinny, I really hadn’t

got a clue about anything to do with pole!

Simple moves?! Wow, it was so much harder than I thought it would be! I don’t think I lifted myself

off the floor even for a second!


Did you feel out of place being plus size ?


Yes and no. It can be hard to go into a new place with the expectation that the majority of people

there will be much thinner than you, but I’ve been big all my life so I suppose I’ve just got used to it

over the years.

It made it easier that there was another plus size girl there, and we shared a pole together for the

first lesson. By the second lesson we were friends on Facebook, and she had introduced me to the

group “Celebrating Plus Size Pole Dancers” and suddenly a whole new exciting world was opened up

to me. Coincidentally, there was a video that went viral that same week of a plus size comedienne

trying pole fitness for the first time, and I definitely related to watching her struggle!





How did you feel after the first class and were you excited to go back ?


Hahahaha, EVERYTHING hurt! I struggled just changing the gears in my car driving home! The next

day I could barely walk, and people at work were laughing at me! The only thing that got me to go

back was that I had already paid for the full course! So many people dropped out over the weeks, I

think the class size halved. I was determined not to waste the money though, typical accountant!


It was disheartening to see other people in the class progress so much quicker through the moves

whilst I was still struggling to get the things we were shown in the first week. But I kept watching

videos of plus size pole dancers online, and feeling in awe of some of the things these amazing,

strong women could do. I began more and more to look forward to the next weeks class.

As I got to the end of the 6 weeks, I knew this was something I wanted to continue. I had heard

about Chrome Dance through a friend so booked a 4 class pack to start as soon as my course

finished. Again I had all the newbie nerves moving studios, but I shouldn’t have worried as everyone

was so friendly, the class sizes were much smaller, it was great to get a lot of one-to-one time with

Andrew.


Do you feel pole fitness has benefited your life, and has anything come out of it that you wouldn’t

have thought of when you first started?


Definitely, pole has totally changed my life and I have seen so many benefits from it. My body is

more toned, I am more flexible, and I have increased my upper body strength massively. I wasn’t

prepared for the number of bruises you get, but you just wear them with pride!

Aside from the physical aspects, pole has improved my life in other ways. I have made brilliant

friends and experienced new things. It has also built my confidence and pushed me into trying other

things such as burlesque and yoga.

If you had told me a year ago that I would be preparing for a pole competition a year on, I would

have laughed in your face!



Rhiannon first class


Who else do you feel could improve their life by starting pole fitness ?


I literally push pole fitness as a hobby onto everyone I meet! Everyone says they have no upper body

strength, but neither did I at the start. Yes it’s harder as a plus size poler, but then it makes nailing a

move even more rewarding when it finally happens. If you’re looking for a fun way to exercise, to

improve your flexibility, or just want to try something new - pole fitness is for you.


What is pole fitness about to you?


Being part of a supportive community whilst pushing for your own personal goals. That and getting

to whinge for an hour in the evening about not being able to do the moves I’m given – I love to

moan.


What makes you keep coming back ?


Seeing the progression I am making really makes me want to improve. Also, getting lovely comments

on social media when I post pictures and videos reminds me of how far I’ve come and spurs me on

to keep pushing forward. Plus, I think Andrew would miss me if I didn’t go 

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