Haha.. Sorry for the false alarm! No, no, I haven’t gone all out with my inner stripper yet.
Another clarification: Not all the girls at the studio dance in lingerie either. So if you had visions of nubile, lithe women twirling around in lacy little underpinnings and were gonna rush down to check it out… well, you can still come check it out (during performance week) cos the girls have mad skills and are awesome to watch, but they won’t be all clad in lingerie. Outfits range from the more conservative, (tank tops, camisole tops, yoga shorts) to pretty hot, (midriffs & bikini tops, hot-pants) to sexy momma (bikinis, lingerie sets, sexy cowgirls/nurses/cops) and everything in-between.
Initally, I was adamant about staying as covered up as possible.
Was I trying to be modest? Uh, no… I think it’s safe to say that if you can decide to learn pole dancing, you’re way past the modesty conversation.
No, I was just plain insecure about my body. In pole, more skin contact means a safer and more effective practice. So you will literally need to bare some skin, most likely along with whatever self- image issues you have.
And I didn’t realise how many I had until I started! Hence I was clinging to my tank tops as much as I was to my pole.
Looks aside, I also had major insecurities about the way I moved and danced. My inner conversations sounded like: “omg, why do I look so retarded doing this choreography? Damn you, lower abdominal fat & Kit Kat chunky for tasting so good! Damn you, negligible hand-eye coordination skills!! What do Mean, jump up from the floor in these heels and still look sexy?!” And all the while, I was subconsciously trying to avoid looking at myself in the mirror. Which is completely counter productive if you’re trying to learn dance choreography!
To make things worse, the assistant instructor in my beginners class was built like a Japanese anime heroine: gorgeous, with the most magnificent bosom I’ve seen in real life, a tiny trim waist, and no stretch marks in sight on her perfect bottom. *Gulp*
But slowly, the stronger and better I got at my spins and lifts, the more my confidence grew. It took a while, but my body’s appearance started to get less important to me than its performance. I started to appreciate what it could do rather than just how it looked.
And as a bonus it did start to look more toned, although that pesky pooch still isn’t going anywhere. (dammit!!)
So recently I resolved to only wear midriff-baring tops to class and to practice. In the spirit of self acceptance, I’m committing to love my body the way it is, stretch marks and all, and embrace the reflection in the mirror.
Personally, I find that halter midriffs and boy-leg shorts bridge the line between functionality and aesthetics.. The day I take the plunge into full-on bikini territory, well, we’ll see about that…