Sheila Kelley (she learnt how to pole dance for a film after being in LA Law)
First of a all a quick review of having a pole in the middle of my living room: At first it felt a bit bizarre, but now, it’s up more than I can be bothered to take it down, and it’s so cool. For a start it looks cool – all shiny and sleek – perfect for the modern trendy home! There’s the conversational factor eg. “Oh my god, you have a pole!” There’s also the kinky factor; after all let’s face it, it’s a little bit rude, but not so perverted that you wouldn’t want your friends to know. And of course, it’s great for exercise.
I’ve always admired those girls who can perform nifty tricks up a pole and I see it as more a feat of gymnastics than anything else. Dancing with one looks sexy in a very natural sort of balletic way. Showing the strength and grace of a human body I think is a great skill and I hope these days people wouldn’t be condescending and disdainful about pole dancing. That said; I haven’t been brave enough to tell my parents that I got a pole for Christmas.
By the way, the one I got needs a permanent mounting on the ceiling, but this can be covered with a discreet smoke alarm if you want it to. Then, you just screw it into place and away you go. (Insert own pole screwing joke). It is very strong and will take overweight people swinging from it.
Ok – On with the dvd and the actual fitness workout. I think I have built up a collection of about 10 workout videos over the years – and along with MTV’s The Grind video, this one ranks at joint first place. (The Hotpants workout with Dan Karaty in 2nd; the Bodylicious ultimate dance workout with Lavelle Smith Jr. 3rd and definitely last, the Liberty X one which is crap – you’d get a higher heart rate eating a piece of celery) Anyway; I also got a little heart rate monitor gizmo for Christmas and last night after a work out on the pole I tested myself and was on the high side of my optimum beats per minute for fat burning and I was dripping with sweat, so that basically proves it’s a good workout. And my arms and thighs kill the next day. But the great thing is, I don’t feel like I’m slogging my guts out. Because I’m swinging round and round, I get a nice cool breeze to keep me cool, and because I’m concentrating so hard on getting the correct leg in the correct place and whatnot, I think it distracts from the fact that I’m actually working quite hard. This is most definitely a fun way to work out.
I was a bit annoyed at the 20 minute floor warm up though. It’s good if you like yoga and pilates, but for me it was just too slow and repetitive. It’s also a bit American and in touch with your body. Your boyfriend will definitely love watching it from behind though. There’s plenty of bum in the air positions and comments like ‘feel flesh against flesh’ and ‘get in tune with the curves of your body’ to get eyebrows raising! But at least I felt it was in a non pretentious and provocative way – I got the impression that Sheila Kelley is naturally a very sensual woman. Who also happens to look bloody fantastic for a forty year old.
There are then some exercises at the pole followed by nine tricks. This selection includes easy ones that looks good straight away so you feel pretty clever, and some tricky ones to practice and get good at. Perfect really. By the time I’ve mastered these, I’ll be ready for the follow up dvd that will probably come out this time next year. Look here for the review!