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Are you physically ready for that awesome new trick? Here are some ways to tell!

Are you physically ready for that awesome new trick? Here are some ways to tell!

Are you physically ready for that awesome new trick? Here are some ways to tell!

Comments Off on Are you physically ready for that awesome new trick? Here are some ways to tell!
So you’ve been poling for a while now, and you’re interested in stepping up your pole trick game. How do you know whether you’re ready physically to execute the move safely … or whether maybe you need to keep at your conditioning a bit longer? 
As with so many things related to the body, one of the keys is listening to what your body is trying to tell you. 
Sounds so simple, yes? But it’s so easy to find people who are pushing themselves too hard for the sake of “getting” a move. 

If you’re not ready for a move, you’re not ready for a move. 
There’s nothing that says you shouldn’t keep working toward a move you want to conquer, but continuing at all costs to try something you’re not ready for can leave you both frustrated and injured. 
It’s SO not worth it!
My guess is that most dancers are body aware enough to know the difference between needing to take a bit of time to suss out hand/leg/body placement, and simply not being strong enough to get into or hold a move. 
A few red flags:
  • Do you feel like a particular part of your body is going to collapse/buckle even as you’re getting into a move?
  • Does a bit of sliding once you’re in a move completely freak you out?
  • Do you get into a pose, and immediately bail because you can’t hold your balance in it? Not being able to find your balance point is one thing–it normally works itself out as you continue to work on a pose. Not having the strength to hold your balance point once you’re in a pose is a whole different ball game and can be unsafe. 
  • Do you need a lot of momentum just to get your body into place?
Do you want to push yourself physically? Yes, of course you do! That’s how we all improve, by pushing ourselves and testing ourselves. At the same time, there are limits to how far you should push if you want to be a safe poler. 
Caterpillar climb is a prime example of a much-coveted move, and one that’s often attempted
before the dancer’s ready for it. Proper conditioning is VITAL to nailing a move like this! 
Listen to your body. 
I was recently working on a new combination and had a heck of a lot of “uh, where on earth do I put my inside foot NOW??” moments. What I didn’t have were “OMG if I don’t hook my toe on the pole right this minute I’m going down, and I’m going down hard” moments. That’s because I’d broken the move down to make sure I had the strength for the various individual components. I needed, for safety’s sake, to make sure I could hold one part of the combination while I sorted out where I needed to go in order to get into the next part of the combination.
It doesn’t matter if it seems like the entire world is doing that super cool pole trick. Know what your body is and isn’t capable of right now. If you’re not ready, shelve it and work on conditioning/balance that focuses on the appropriate muscle groups. Pull the move off the shelf now and again and test it out, but not at the expense of your safety or health. Take care of your body, keep it safe and strong so you can keep poling for as many years as you want! 
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