Nothing compares 2 U

Nope! Not buying the 'Oh I just naturally open my eyes every morning looking like a sex kitten!' Nope, not buying this ‘Oh I naturally open my eyes every morning looking like a sex kitten’ bullcrap.

The other day at the studio, I was practicing the baby version of a free-standing elbow head stand with tucked legs, which took me 3 classes of yoga to find enough balance for. I was feeling quite accomplished because it’s not even something that I’ve ever aimed for.

Then one of my friends who doesn’t even do much yoga decided to try it too, and immediately went up into a full extended freestanding elbow headstand.

Which is amazing! Though I couldn’t help immediately feeling slightly crestfallen. Like, why should I ever bother now…

But that’s just being silly of course! Quit working on something cos someone else can do it better?! Might as well just give up on life!

Still, I’ve always felt that one of the biggest situational hazards of pole dancing is that you get exposed to so many awesome dancers: Your fellow classmates, your instructors, guest instructors, new students, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, there’s a world out there of gorgeous dancers to behold in all shapes, sizes and styles. And once you’ve opened your eyes to the pole universe, you start seeing beautiful dancers errrrrrwhere.

Wait.. why is this a hazard, exactly? Isn’t it a wonderful thing?

Yes of course it is!

Except for one little thing….

that terrible C-word.

Maybe it’s just me who is so damned insecure, but sometimes (after the initial awe and admiration of watching someone beautiful) I still catch myself Comparing myself negatively to other dancers.

Inside my head, a sad little voice will whisper, “You’re never going to be as gorgeous/strong/flexible/fluid/sexy/expressive/as fast a learner/__(insert favorite adjective here)__ ”

Other times, it’s a case of pure body envy…

“OMG look at her Amazing cleavage/hair/eyes/legs/face/ass/FLAT tummy/complete lack of cellulite and stretchmarks!!/__(insert other favorite body part here)__”

All that is usually followed by inadequate glances at my own correlating body parts.

And it’s when I find myself at this point where I need to remind myself that wait a minute, I’m not that bad after all either! And I look better than chopped liver too!

I may not be perfect, or as good a dancer as I wish I was, but I got what I’ve got and that’s pretty damn great compared to when I first started as all-kinds-of-awkward.

And then I start to feel a bit better.

But it’s a constant battle… you know what I’m talking about?

FYI, back then before I learned the wisdom of not comparing yourself against other dancers, I genuinely felt like crap ALL THE BLOODY TIME during my first round of Intermediate 1 when I was the last girl in class who still couldn’t invert.

I felt like crying quitting after every single class but instead of quitting, I’d take off my heels, drag a crash mat into practice time and kick my way up that pole until I somehow managed to (badly) invert eventually. Lesson learned then: Don’t listen to those bad feelings. Just keep practicing!

And shortly after that, I even felt empowered enough to start a blog.

Anyway, since I’m not much of a group-hug-inspirational-speechey kind of gal, I won’t go into how each of us are all like special unique snowflakes, or other such cheese-balls.

What I will say though, is that I guarantee you that whichever gorgeous/crazy strong/super flexy/mad sexy/gifted dancer you inevitably end up comparing yourself to at some point has her own insecurities too, that you are probably not even aware of.

Oh hell, and if all else fails… at least remind yourself that she probably looks like crap first thing in the morning ok?! Cos I know I sure do! ;P

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Not dead yet, but maybe close. (The blog, not me!)

Hello… it’s me… I was wondering… if after all this time you’d like to…

sue-2

 Possibly my favourite pole trick (and pole photo) of all time. For now at least. 

…still give a small hoot about a very old and neglected blog about pole dancing.

I know I barely do.

Which doesn’t mean that I don’t think about blogging anymore. Because I very often do, but mostly in the, ‘Wow, I sure wish I still had the time and energy to sit down and articulate these garbled thoughts into a blog post like I used to!”

Sadly, these days I do not.

I do admit, being a Leo and all, that I’ve missed the sound of my own (virtual) voice, and so here I am.

Initially, the plan was to write some grand farewell speech about closing down this blog, etc, etc.. but who am I kidding… I can’t even be bothered to do that! So instead, here’s a few things that made me happy this year: (just with regards to pole, of course)

1. It’s been a whole year teaching at The Brass Barre now! After teaching mostly Striptease Open and a lot of trial classes, I finally started teaching Beginners Pole, and recently also Striptease Intermediate too, which is a whole different level of crazy. (in the good way!) And I’m loving it. To think that at one point I almost felt like quitting…

2. I actually really enjoy choreographing my own routines to teach. Even though the process is a tiring one that involves a fair bit of struggling and swearing, it’s always worth it in the end. Especially that priceless moment when the students really get it and look amazing when they perform!

3) I’ve gotten so much better at counting! And counting while demonstrating and talking at the same time! Don’t laugh okay, but as a non-formerly-trained-dancer, counting never came naturally to me. I still dance mostly to the accents in the music rather than to the counts of the music. And I even choreograph that way too, adding in the counts only after I’ve finished choreographing the whole entire thing based on feeling the music alone. Oops, told you my secret there…

4) I’ve had the pleasure of teaching girls who told me in private that they had actually read my blog before they even started pole, and that reading about my pole journey was one of the reasons they picked up the courage to try it in the first place. You girls know who you are, and I want you to know that it makes me way happier than you probably think it does!

Now for the flip side to all that, aka reality, and the reasons why I just really can’t keep up with blogging anymore!

Since are only 24 hours in a day, a third of which I (don’t even) spend sleeping…. the reality is that between working at my day job which sometimes requires me to work weekend events, teaching at The Brass Barre anywhere from 3-5 times a week, (not including training, rehearsing, performing, and choreographing) maintaining my house, and spending time with my husband and cats… time and energy are truly precious commodities. I haven’t even done a yoga class in over a year!

Now despite all that, I somehow amazingly also managed to re-connect with my fashion roots after a very long time, and actually started sewing my own pole outfits lately!!!

(Maybe I’ll find the energy to blog about that in another 3-6 months’ time, but in a nutshell: Yes, I graduated from fashion school, and No, sewing your own pole outfits is really neither easy nor fun but I tend to enjoy things like that.)

Anyway, apparently it’s called having a hobby…. A concept which I’d long forgotten about, after having long forgotten my old hobby, which was blogging.

And now you hopefully see why!

Honestly, for the past few months I’ve been feeling that I have no time for myself and despite the fact that I actually do enjoy myself every day, I’ve also been falling sick way too often from a general lack of rest and simply doing too much stuff all the time.

But I’m not complaining! My life is great and I’m so super blessed to be able to work on all the things I love, all the time. I just need to maybe space them out a little more, so that I don’t need to be working all the time!

And with that, it’s time to finally stop procrastinating and mop the damned floor, which is how I managed to sit down and write this blog post in the first place. Productivity happens in funny ways, doesn’t it!

xxx.

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More interviews

Screen Shot 2016-08-08 at 12.12.02 amSince the only blog I manage to write anything for these days is The Brass Barre’s Blog, here are the latest interviews from there:

Thinking Flexy Thoughts with Anastasia Skukhtorova

Fundamentally sexy with Leigh Ann Reilly

Enjoy!

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No blogging, just interviews..

Current mood.

Current mood. :p

So Term 1 at The Brass Barre came and went. I spent most of it going to the studio 5-6 days a week, either to teach, train, or understudy, which left me with very little time for anything blogging.

Somehow though, I managed to find enough time to write for the studio’s new blog. Which is somewhat ironic, given that I can barely click open my own blog.

But then again, when it’s for an opportunity to talk to Felix Cane about her new studio (and her new boobs!), and ask Steven Retchless about his shoe collection, I just can’t say no.

 

So here’s my latest interview with Felix: (which I’m even late in posting here!)

http://www.thebrassbarre.com/blog/2016/2/22/catchingupwithfelixcane

 

And the more recent one with Steven:

http://www.thebrassbarre.com/blog/2016/3/16/4zzf9vnoui69c0buy2sh0jygl275a4

There will be more interviews to come too.

Basically, I’ll feature whichever guest choreographer whose routines will be taught at The Brass Barre. And it’s already been announced that Term 3 will feature lyrical style by Anastasia Skukhtorova! So if you have any burning question you’d like me to ask her, leave a comment.

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Looking back on a very eventful year

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From Montigo weekend with my pole sisters ❤

Well, it’s New Year’s Eve and I thought I’d write something since I’m on leave and all. Also, WordPress cheerily informed me that I’d only blogged 9 times this year! So might as well just make it 10, right?

I suppose we always look back on our year and marvel at all the things we managed to do, and all the things we wish we had managed to do. And it all seems pretty impressive by the end of 12 months. But 2015 was probably one of the most truly eventful years for me (pole-wise) since I started this blog as a wide-eyed beginner 4 years ago.

Right at the start of the year, I got a phone call from the now ex-owner of Bobbi’s Pole Studio Singapore inviting me to teach. Which blew my socks off, because I never felt I’d ever be good enough, (and I still struggle with that!) and back then I’d already been in a long pole slump with very low motivation.

But when life presents you with opportunity, take it! And then later scramble to try and figure out how to pull it off…

Once I agreed, I officially met my pole sisters (aka my fellow junior instructors) and all of us began on a whirlwind journey of training, teaching, and performing together for the Bobbi’s brand.

Things were going swimmingly for a while and we’d all just gotten the hang of managing our time, energy, and the responsibilities of being new teachers. Sign ups at Bobbi’s had picked up, loads of fresh new beginners were showing up and embracing their new pole passion, and we were working great together as a team.

We all went from not knowing each other very well, to sharing early mornings, late nights, meals together, too many taxi rides, a very cramped teacher’s room, and a lot of sweat and effort.

I even got used to having teacher training every Saturday morning, whereas in the past I couldn’t even drag myself out of the house in time for a class at noon!

Then all of a sudden, we were told that our local principal would be moving away, and our beloved second home would be closing its doors for good.

Once the news was announced, everyone sort of fell into a collective panic and depression. I for one, was very sad about only getting a short time to experience teaching. And even though I totally appreciated the other offers I received, I knew in my heart that it wouldn’t be the same.

At the same time, my other favorite pole studio here, The Yoga Poe Studio, also suddenly announced it was shutting its doors, and its owner (whom I still look up to as one of my personal pole ‘Sensei’s’) was moving out of Singapore too.

I was so depressed about not having many options left that I briefly but seriously considered just quitting pole!

Thankfully, as the saying goes: “After the rain, comes the rainbow”. And my rainbow came in the form of The Brass Barre, set up by the very same people who used to work at Bobbi’s, whom I already know and love. Thank goodness! It even stands in the exact same location as Bobbi’s did, except now the lights are prettier and the floor is a lot cleaner.

And next week, The Brass Barre will officially open its doors for Term 1, and me and my pole sisters will be teaching together again! (We’ve already been training together again because teaching may be on and off, but training is forever.)

So Thank You 2015 for all the adventures and lessons you gave me. It was a wild ride and definitely not an easy one but I’m glad for all of it nonetheless.

And 2016, I’m ready!

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Hello, gorgeous!

I am seriously in love with the lighting here.

First photo at The Brass Barre! I am so in love with these lights…

I finally met my new pole home, The Brass Barre.

It’s been over a month now that Bobbi’s Pole Studio Singapore closed its doors for good. And in that time, I’ve been traveling a LOT. So much that I didn’t get a chance to visit the brand-new studio until last night!

As you might have heard by now, The Brass Barre is opened by the ex-senior instructors of Bobbi’s Pole Studio Singapore, (no, that doesn’t include me) and stands in the same location.

Renovations started pretty much immediately after the Miss Pole Dance Asia Pacific event, and while the studio hasn’t officially launched yet, the doors just opened to students for practice sessions last weekend.

Sadly, due to my crazy travel schedule, I missed all of the studio’s debut photo shoots and video shoots, including the ones of the teaching team! I’m still sad about it, sigh.

I’m also going to be missing the official opening party of The Brass Barre on Dec 5, which sucks! *super emo face*

But if you’re in town on Dec 5, do head on down to the studio and watch the instructors perform their showcase and preview of the new classes there!

Apart from the 3 weeks that I spent in London, New York and Tokyo for work and play, I’m flying to Hong Kong tomorrow with a bunch of girls from the studio (to watch the International Pole Championships) and again to Tokyo for work a few days after returning, before finally going to Koh Phangan to attend a bestie’s wedding. Read: that’s a lot of packing, unpacking, and laundry to be done!

So I knew I had to cram in a visit to the studio last night, or I wouldn’t get a chance to meet my new second home until mid-December! (At this rate, I barely even have time to see my poor parents)

Not kidding when I say the lights just bring out the sexy in you

Not kidding when I say the lights immediately bring out the sexy in you…

Anyway, the studio was totally worth making that time for! It’s gorgeous, classy and oh-so-clean, with sensuously flattering lighting that makes me feel sexy the minute I walk in. I’m so happy that I get to teach there!!!

Of course, I had to take some photos. Normally, I suck at taking pictures of myself but luckily Po.Lita takes the best photos and suggested spots to pose at. And the pictures turned out really good just on my iPhone, with no need for filtering at all!

Of course, after so much time away and off the pole, I’m going to have to kick my flabby ass back in shape real hard once I’m done with all this traveling. Of course, I did manage to fit in some pole classes while I was away, but I definitely ate way more calories than I burned, sigh..

In the meantime, here are a couple more preview photos of the space.

The lights change colors too!

The lights change colors too!

Mood, much?

Mood, much?

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