No, but pole dancing does resemble stripping in a lot of ways.”
When pole dancers show off their talent as they dance around a pole, the act of performing in front of an audience is a crucial aspect to their performance. If you’ve ever been to a pole in a bar or club, you can see the dancers standing on thin legs and trying to balance on their hands and feet while holding on to one another and dancing. This is something that most people (including me!) are familiar with, but it took awhile to get used to how it looked and felt in person.
We’d heard horror stories of pole dancers going for days without food or drink, while others had died due to drinking. Some of the best pole dancing performers I’ve worked with have suffered terrible injuries and even died.
In the course of researching this piece, I came across a book titled “Pole Dancing for Life.” The author, Barbara A. Hahn, tells the story of a couple of Pole Dancing World winners that was featured as a part of the book:
“When [the author] asked them about their lives, there was no hint of the tragic end of the lives that had led to their dreams and their successes. They shared with her their stories of survival and endurance on the pole in the desert.”
In the end, this story shows how there are limits to what a person can achieve in life. The author had a hard time believing these young men who were willing to die to achieve their true love’s dreams, and at the end of the book we see how they ended. Many in the world do not think like that. In order for life to become worthwhile, we must be willing to live for the things that are good in life, and to take chances that the world will not always be kind to us.
Pole dancing may be different from stripping, and even pole dancing is more social than stripping, but its lessons cannot be ignored. For many Pole Dancing World competitors, it is something that they’ve been doing for a while and they’ll always be proud of that, and I’m sure the thousands of dancers who took to pole dancing in the 70s and 80s would also be able to say the same thing.
It is my hope that other young people will grow up on this, whether it’s through reading about pole dancers, watching movies from that era, or even getting involved in our community. I’ve been inspired by what these young people have been able to do
pole dancing championships, best pole dance ever, why is pole dancing bad, pole dancing gif, pole dancing for beginners