What kind of pole do you have? How do you stay on the pole? Where did you get your shoes? These are questions I often get as a pole dance instructor, competitor, and performer. I completely understand that there are a lot of products to choose from and most students who are new to pole fitness have no idea where to begin. Here are some of my favorite tools that I use on a daily basis.
Tips for Buying a Pole
The industry standard for poles is the X-Pole. X-Poles are used in competitions and showcases all over the world. I purchased my first one two years ago and I love it! Other popular brands used by pole dancers include Platinum Stages and Lil Mynx. All of these companies offer poles that are removable so there is no screwing to the ceiling involved unless you buy a pole with a permanent mount. You are thinking “Removable poles? How does it stay up?” Think of it like a vertical shower rod on steroids. Tension holds it to the floor and ceiling! There are plenty of dance poles and stripper poles available at places like Amazon or Spencer’s. My advice for these is to pay attention to the price and read the reviews. A pole that is priced under $100 probably isn’t the greatest quality or made of the best materials. You should get a sturdy pole that has easy installation and will stay in place. I do want you to end up on YouTube but not because you fell off the pole.
Staying on the Pole
For my ladies with sweaty hands or who just seem to have trouble gripping and staying on the pole, no worries! There are a variety of products for that! I personally use a product called DryHands for my hands and something called Firm Grip for my elbow and knee pits. Grip can also go in between your thighs, on your shoulder, or on your feet. I tried out a lot of different grips before settling on these two but everyone’s body is different. I have students that use products named iTac, Tuff Skin, Tite Grip, and Pole Poised. Try out a few at a time until you find something that sticks :)
Shoes! Shoes! Shoes!
Don’t we all love shoe shopping? There are so many options when it comes to purchasing “gym” shoes for pole dance. You can go to any store in your hometown that sells stripper attire and find some however, I have found the prices at those stores to be a tad bit on the high side. I typically use online retailers such as snaz75, Discount Stripper, and Bad Kitty. The brands that many pole dancers wear are Ellie and Pleasers. Think of them as the Nike and Reebok of pole dance shoes. To start out, purchase a simple six-inch platform heel. I recommend this even if you wear heels all the time simply because the moves you do in your new gym shoes are not the same moves you do in the club. As you grow, you can start to add in more height and different styles of shoes. Shoe shopping for pole dance gets super addictive so try and pace yourself accordingly.
Protecting Your Hand and Feet
Now this is a product I wish I had known about when I first started dancing. Mighty Grip makes cover ups for your feet and hands! When you first learn how to climb the pole, your feet get beat up pretty bad as well as your hands. These protectors create a barrier between your skin and the pole which helps you to avoid ripping your skin (I did that so you don't have to) and getting callouses on your hands. Additionally, they are made out of a material which helps you grip the pole. I have scars on the top of my feet from climbing that are never going away and had I known about Mighty Grip I wouldn’t have them.
Pole Dance Attire
With the rise in popularity of pole dance as a fitness activity, companies making clothes for pole dance has increased too. There are also companies who make yoga wear that have started to make shorts for pole dancers. You can buy booty shorts from almost anywhere. If you are looking for comfort, try fold over yoga shorts from stores like Target or Walmart. I prefer shorts with a little bit of a waistband and tie up on the side which are sold at a variety of places. Companies that specifically market to pole dancers are Arista Activewear, Dragonfly, and PoleFit by Bad Kitty. I have also been successful buying competition outfits from Dancewear Solutions as the shorts tend to be on the longer side which is a requirement for competitions. If you are interested in going straight stripper style for clothes visit the local shop where dancers shop or visit party clothes stores in the mall.
Please note this blog post contains affiliate links. Opinions are my own and if you purchase a product from one of links I earn a small commission.