You guys, who follow me on Instagram and Facebook, may remember the photo of a pole dancer. I wanted to share with you more than just the photo because Samantha is super inspirational and as beautiful on the inside as on the outside. She is a pole dancer, a personal trainer and a student finishing up her prerequisite courses to apply for a Doctorate of Physical Therapy program. And she teaches pole dancing too. Busy lady!
I asked her a few questions to find out how and why she started pole dancing and how it makes her feel.
How long have you been pole dancing and why did you start?
We’re approaching about a year and a half ago now that I started pole dancing. One of my closest friends, Jackie, invited me to come to a class with her just as a way to switch up our workout routines. I took one class and didn’t go back for fear of getting “too muscular.” I had NO idea that pole would change my life shortly after. My friend convinced me to come back and give it another try. I did my first invert during that class–which for a beginner is a big deal–and for the first time felt the “high” that is well known to pole dancers. From that point on I was hooked.
How does the pole dancing make you feel?
Pole has opened so many mental doors for me. For one, it has opened my eyes to a beauty outside of traditional standards. As I said, I originally ran from pole because I didn’t want to get too muscular or “manly” looking. I struggled for a while with the changes that my body went through as I grew stronger– I felt inadequate at times as a woman. But over time I’ve come to find such power in the strength that my physique conveys. It is my badge of honor that I’ve overcome both the physical and mental challenges that pole dancing has presented to me.
But the most important part of pole for me is its ability to bring me to the present. I’ve struggled with anxiety for as long as I can remember. The ONLY time that my mind is quiet and at peace–the only time that I’m in the present moment–is when I’m on the pole. It is my form of meditation. It has given me the strength to make it through some of the lowest points in my life.
What would you say to the those who are thinking about starting pole dancing?
Just start. And keep coming. Pole is one of those sports that tells you “no” over and over again. It requires strength and grace, and it can be quite painful. But the feeling you get when you defy it and conquer a trick makes it all worth it. It’s truly an indescribable feeling. I can guarantee you will discover an inner strength in yourself that you never imagined existed.
Now, I would love to know what is YOUR form of meditation and what makes YOUR mind at peace?