The Complete Guide to Your First Pole Dance Class

[Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links (marked with *), which means I’ll earn a little bit of money if you buy things through them at no extra cost to you. For more information, please see my disclosure here]

For the purposes of this post, I’ll be using the phrase ‘pole dance’ to refer to pole fitness classes as well as dance classes. If you want to start pole fitness classes, and you’re not interested in the dance aspect, you’ll find this post just as relevant!

I took my first pole dance class in November 2017. Being the socially anxious wreck that I was, I spent a whole week scouring the internet for blog posts and articles on what to expect as a beginner.

Feeling prepared through excessive research was (and is) a comfort behaviour for my anxiety, and I needed to mentally prepare myself to throw myself into a new activity.

Particularly one that seemed so extroverted, and required me to be around a whole new group of people who inevitably were better at the thing I wanted to do.

Pole dance classes called to me because I needed something new and interesting to break me out of my routine.

I’d go to work, come home, and do nothing in particular until I went to sleep, only for the same thing to happen the next day. I was losing interest in weightlifting, partially due to depression, but also because that routine never changed either. At the very least, I figured it’d make for an interesting story. 

Partway through the class, everything clicked.

I knew pole dance was something I was missing in my life. A few classes later, I realised I’d fallen helplessly in love with pole – bruises and all. 

Me, a shy, anxious, depressed introvert who struggled to speak to anyone, wanting to do something so extroverted in celebration of my body?

Logically, I couldn’t get my head around it. But love is rarely logical. 

I’ve been doing pole for over two years now, so I’d like to pass on some words of wisdom for those of you who are thinking of trying a pole class. 

You might be thinking “But Emma, I can’t do pole, I have no upper body strength!” 

“I need to lose weight first or I’ll never lift my weight!”

“Don’t you have to be fit already to do pole dance?”

That’s what this guide is here for.

I’ll be covering everything you need to know before your first pole dance class and busting all of these common myths in this post. Sit back, grab yourself a cup of tea, and let me walk you through your first adventure into the world of pole dance. 

Table of Contents:

A Quick Guide to Different Types of Pole Classes

From the outside, you might think there’s only two different kinds of pole. There’s the fitness side, with its impressive tricks and seemingly effortless strength, and there’s the stripper style dancing with sky-high heels and even higher levels of confidence. 

However, pole dance is a lot more nuanced than that and, as its popularity has grown over the last few decades, there’s so many styles of pole dance to choose from.

You might already have an idea of what kind of pole dance class you want to do, or you might not have the foggiest where to start. So, here’s a breakdown of the different types of pole classes out there, and what the terminology means. 

Shout out to Peach Lee Ray for her awesome blog post on sexy pole dance styles, which helped me put this list together.


In contemporary or artistic pole dance classes, you’ll be practising a style of dance similar to what you’ll have seen in music videos, dance performances, and other popular dance styles.

These styles focus on theming, working with the emotions of your music, and pole dance as an art form. If you like the idea of pole dance, but don’t want to learn the sexier styles, these styles are a great middle ground.

Contemporary and artistic pole dance classes are commonly done with bare feet, but these styles can be performed with heels too.

Erotic/Exotic/Russian Exotic

Exotic styles are best described as high energy sexy.

These styles tend to focus more on moves around the base of the pole and making high-strength moves look effortless and graceful. In her blog post, Peach classes Exotic as “moves that are sexy by virtue of their ‘fucking hell’ quality”, which is probably the best way of explaining these styles!

While Exotic styles can be done with bare feet, most classes tend to require heels and knee pads.

Stripper Style

The dance style most people think of when you say “pole dancing”, stripper style is raw sexual energy.

It’s less about tricks, and more about stage presence, energy, and sexuality, and can be best described as “dancing like you fuck”. With this style, you’ll work on audience engagement and connecting with your own sexuality. Don’t be fooled, though – stripper style might look easy, but you’ll be working on muscle engagement, posture, and flexibility to really make your dance look effortless.

True to its origins, stripper style classes normally require heels and knee pads. 


Classique is often seen as a “cleaner” form of sexy pole dance, as it focuses more on grace, fluidity, and seductive movement.

If stripper style is “come here and fuck me”, Classique is “I bet you’d like to see what’s under these clothes”. In a Classique style class you’ll work on trick combos, splits, and audience engagement. This is the sexy style you’ll tend to see in pole competitions, and if you’ve watched Ozzy Man’s commentary on Miss Pole Dance Australia 2016, you’ll already recognise this style.

Classique is usually performed in heels, but classes can be done in either heels or bare feet, and depending on the instructor may also require knee pads.

Pole Fitness

Pole fitness takes the elements of pole dance, but works on them in more of a fitness-style class.

You’ll work on spins, floorwork, transitions, and tricks, with the focus being on building strength and flexibility. A pole fitness class focuses more on the strength and gymnastics of pole, but they may also feature short routines and some dance elements to help you to link moves together. Pole fitness tends to be heels-optional, so you start learning with bare feet and move onto heels if you want to.

Help! I don’t know what to try! 

As Peach says in her blog post, these styles aren’t clean cut, and many dancers will take elements from lots of different styles to find their own flow.

So, just because a class says it’s Exotic style, it doesn’t mean it’ll be the same as an Exotic style class at another studio. Every instructor has their own style and methods of teaching. When you’re starting out with pole dance classes, you might go through a period of trying out multiple studios and classes to find what works for you, which is perfectly normal! 

As with any other form of movement, if you don’t find joy in what you’re doing, then no-one’s forcing you to keep on doing it. If you try out a style that sounded great to you and you didn’t get on with the class, then go ahead and try something else. This is your journey!

Picking a Good Pole Dance Studio

When you start looking for pole dance studios in your area, you might be stumped as to what you’re actually looking at. Just as you’d check over a gym before you decided to join, you should know what you’re looking for in a good pole dance studio.

However, unlike most gyms, pole studies all tend to be independent, small businesses – meaning there’s a lot of variation between studio sizes, capacities, teaching styles, and more. 

When you’re looking at where to take your first pole dance class, here’s a few things that you need to be looking for on their website/social media, or asking the studio directly.


Every instructor needs to be insured, first aid trained, and qualified with an accredited training provider.

X-Pole, Spin City, and Pole Dance Community (PDC) are the most common. Most pole studios list their instructors on their website along with their qualifications, but if this information isn’t clear, don’t be afraid to ask. 

Some pole studios do have teaching assistants who want to learn how to teach, but aren’t yet qualified or individually insured, but they should be teaching alongside fully qualified instructors.


With poles being load-bearing apparatus, they must be safely installed and from an industry-leading brand.

X-Poles, Lupit Poles, and Platinum Poles are the three safest poles on the market, and in my opinion, are the only poles a professional studio should be using. They should be securely attached to the ceiling, whether they’re tension-mounted or permanently fixed.

Some studios may use freestanding poles instead, which are weighted at the base and load-tested to ensure they won’t tip over during use.

While X-Pole don’t have an official weight limit, I’ve never had a pole fall down on me in my two years of pole dancing, and I’ve never seen it happen to anyone else when the pole has been correctly installed.

The videos you might have seen of poles falling down during use are very rare instances. In these cases, either the pole has not been correctly tightened or installed before use, or the pole is a cheap, unbranded model from an adult store or Amazon.

If you can’t find this information on their website, or you’re unsure, make sure to ask. A badly engineered or improperly installed pole can lead to serious injuries, and a good studio will be able to address your safety fears.

When you get there

If all of the above looks good and you decide on a studio, there’s a couple of things to keep your eye out for before, during, and after the class.

Before the class

  • Is the bathroom/changing room/waiting room clean?
  • Do you fill out a PAR-Q (medical waiver) or any other paperwork before the class begins?
  • Did the instructor talk to you about what to expect, and give you a chance to ask questions?

During the class

  • Is the floor clean, free of debris, and without cracks?
  • Do people turn up to class after the warm-up has started?
  • Are the poles clean when you get there, and is cleaning solution and/or cloths provided for use during class?
  • Is your instructor supportive and encouraging, and do they offer everyone individual support and spotting where needed?

After the class

  • Do you have a chance to talk to your instructor after the class?
  • Are you rushed out of the door as soon as the class ends?
  • Did you feel encouraged, supported, and welcome?

What to Wear to a Pole Dance Class

For my first class, I wore leggings* and a tank top*. You don’t need anything fancy or pole-specific yet – after all, if you end up not liking pole, you don’t want to have wasted money on clothes you’ll never use! If you don’t have any leggings, shorts or capris will also do.

If you have long hair, you’ll want to tie it up. Trust me, having hair in your face while you’re trying to remember what to do with your limbs gets frustrating very quickly.

If you’ve got boobs, a good medium to high impact sports bra is a must, particularly if you’ve got a larger chest. You’ll be doing some cardio exercises in the warmup, and it’ll help you feel a bit more secure during the class. I swear by the sports bras from Grrrl* because they’re comfortable, breathable, and keep everything locked in place. 

If you bind, don’t wear your binder during a pole dance class, because it can restrict your breathing and potentially be very dangerous. A compression sports bra may help to flatten your chest, but depending on your cup size, it may not get your chest completely flat. If you’re not sure how to bind safely while exercising, please talk to your doctor or care provider.

If you have external tackle to worry about, a dance belt is a good investment. At the beginner level you should be okay with your normal underwear and shorts, but for more dynamic lessons it can help to keep everything in place. I’ve known some pole dancers to double up with their underwear for extra safety.

When I started with pole fitness style classes (with some contemporary thrown in), over the first few weeks I was working on beginner spins, pirouettes, slides, and fan/scissor kicks. These moves only required I kept my ankle, wrists, armpit, and side skin exposed. As long as you’re wearing clothes that expose these grip points, or can be hiked up/rolled/manipulated to expose them, you’re good to go.

Unless the class you want to go to specifically says it requires heels, don’t worry about footwear, as you’ll be dancing barefoot or in socks. 

If your class is more of a dance-style class, or you know it involves floor work, get yourself some knee pads to prevent any damage to your knees. I recommend the knee pads from Hoodlum Fang, because they’re super comfortable, have removable inserts for easy washing, and can be custom made to fit you – check out my review to read more about how much I love them!

Don’t wear any jewellery to pole class – including smart watches and fitness trackers. If you have any piercings that aren’t covered by clothing, check with your studio. Depending on the location of your piercings, you may be asked to remove them or cover them, if possible. If you do have piercings, wear studs and other non-hanging accessories. 

Jewellery and piercings can not only damage the pole (which in turn damages your accessories), but they can present a real hazard during class both to yourself and other students. 

What to Bring to a Pole Dance Class

The essentials are a bottle of water or squash and an open mind. 

Here’s what I typically keep in my pole bag: 

This image is a flatlay of what Emma keeps in the bag she takes to pole dance classes. In the image is a pair of neon pink legwarmers, a small can of deodorant, a bottle of Dry Hands grip aid, a small hairbrush, a tin of Vaseline, a water bottle, and a pair of knee pads from Hoodlum Fang.
Yes, writing this post did remind me to finally get rid of the snack wrappers lurking at the bottom of my bag

Don’t rush and buy yourself any grip aid until you’ve been doing pole for a while. As a beginner, you need to train your grip strength without any additional aids, which is vital to practicing pole dance safely. There’s also so many different kinds of grip aid available now, and you’ll need to learn what kind of grip you need before you invest in a grip aid. 

For the colder months, and if you’re doing floorwork, I definitely recommend getting some legwarmers to help keep you warm and stop you from sticking to the floor. You don’t need to rush out and buy legwarmers straight away, but when you’re ready, I definitely recommend the ones I have from Wink Designs.

I also like to have some hair ties on hand in case the one I’m wearing snaps because, let’s face it, hair ties are not made to last. 

What to Eat Before a Pole Class

Porridge in a wooden bowl, topped with cranberries and blueberries.

You’ll want to eat a hearty snack at least an hour before class – you’re going to need the energy! 

My current go-to is either a bowl of porridge an hour before, or two poached eggs on a slice of brown toast an hour and a half before. These give me plenty of energy to power me through class without making me feel bloated or uncomfortable.

If you need a snack that’s a little more portable, I love the Eat Natural Protein bars, Graze protein bites, or Graze crunchy protein mixes because, like my other pre-workout snacks, they make me feel energised and strong.

I’m not an expert in nutrition by any means, so please take this as a guide and not as written. I don’t talk about nutrition and macros on this blog because I don’t have any qualifications to do so. I can only recommend you foods that I know make me feel good, but you will have different tastes, metabolisms, and nutritional needs to me. You might need to vary when and how much you eat depending on how you feel during training. For more nutrition information, this article is very informative and was written by a qualified nutrition professional.

Make sure you also stay hydrated during the day as you’re going to be sweating a lot during class. Staying hydrated will also help your muscles recover faster during the class and give you more energy.

What Not to do Before a Pole Class

A woman is applying lotion on her hands. There's a red cross next to the image, indicating not to do this.

For the love of all things good and pure, don’t moisturise on the day of your pole class.

In fact, to be on the safe side, I would avoid any non-essential moisturisers and lotions for at least 24 hours before your class.

Most common moisturisers are oil-based, which gives your skin that lovely, soft, dewy feeling. However, when you moisturise with an oil-based lotion, and depending on how long ago you moisturised, that oil sits on or just below the surface of your skin, and transfers to the pole when you sweat. This means you won’t have a hope in hell of gripping to the pole. 

Not only is this dangerous, as you won’t be able to rely on your grip, it’s also inconsiderate to the person you might be sharing a pole with, as it makes the pole more precarious for them too. 

If you have to moisturise within 24 hours of your class, glycerin or aloe-based formulas won’t leave those oils sitting in your skin, and are typically considered “pole safe”. Pole dancers swear by Corn Husker’s Lotion for a skin hydration boost, and I’ve been using O’Keefe’s Working Hands within 24 hours of class with no issues.

Essentially, if it’s not glycerin or aloe-based, and/or leaves some kind of slippery layer on top of your skin, don’t apply it before pole class. This applies to fake tan, body glitter, sun lotion, and anything else you might apply to your skin. 

If you need to use medicated lotions, your best bet would be to talk to your doctor for advice. 

What to Expect During Your First Pole Dance Class


First of all, you need to plan to arrive at your chosen studio at least 15 minutes prior to class. This will ensure you have time to get changed (if you need to) and complete any paperwork. This will also help you feel more comfortable in your surroundings, and give you chance to talk to other students and the instructor/s before class begins. 

Arriving early isn’t just practical, it’s considerate. If you’re there on time, you won’t be interrupting the start of the class by running in late or coming in halfway through the warm-up. In fact, most studios won’t let you in once the warm-up has started and won’t refund you for the class. 


Any paperwork you fill out will be simple, and shouldn’t take long to fill out. Some studios may send you a link via email to complete paperwork online before your class, while others will ask you to fill out a physical form at the studio.

A standard form that’s used is the PAR-Q (Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire) which tells your instructor about your health and if there are any medical issues they need to be aware of. Instructors need to be able to assess the risk of you taking part in the class, and they also need to know if you need any additional support or modifications during the class. You need to make sure you fill this out honestly, and talk to your instructor if you’re not sure about any of the questions.

In rare cases, a PAR-Q may lead to you being told that you should seek medical advice before taking part in the class. This will be because you’ve listed something on your PAR-Q or given an answer that raises red flags with your instructor. In this case, you should talk to your doctor or care provider, who will go over the risks with you and assess whether you should take part in a pole dance class. If they say it’s okay, they’ll need to give you a medical clearance letter which your instructor will keep on file with your PAR-Q.

Any paperwork you complete should be covered by the studio’s Privacy Policy, meaning it’ll only ever be accessible by your instructor/s and should never be passed onto a third party. Your studio should have their Privacy Policy on their website and will be able to address any privacy concerns you may have.

The Class

Regardless of what style of pole your class teaches, all classes follow the same typical format:

Warm-up, train, cool down. 

Warm-ups tend to last for 10-15 minutes and incorporate a variety of cardio, active flexibility, and bodyweight work to get your heart pumping, your joints limber, and your muscles nice and warm. It’s important that you engage with the warm-up as much as you’re able to – and in fact, a lot of studios won’t let you join the class if you arrive after it’s started – because it’s vital to ensuring your muscles and joints are prepared for the stress of exercise. 

What you do for the majority of the class will depend on the style you’ve gone for. Some (like pole fitness) will have you working on specific moves, while dance-based classes will typically involve learning a routine throughout the class. In my experience, the main body of the class tends to last for around 40 minutes, depending on the length of the session and other ‘sections’ of the class. 

Some classes also factor in conditioning, or specific strength or flexibility exercises. In my experience, this tends to be for no more than 5-10 minutes. If your class has a conditioning section, you can expect pole-assisted exercises like pull-ups, crunches, squats, tucks, and other drills to help strengthen specific muscle groups. 

If this sounds intimidating, don’t worry – the point of conditioning is to give it a go, and you can ask your instructor for modifications if something’s not working for you. No-one’s expecting you to manage a perfect unassisted pull-up from day one. If they were, I never would have made it to two years, and I still can’t do a pull-up!

Your cooldown will normally be around 10 minutes, and will incorporate some gentle stretches through the joints and muscles you’ve just used to keep everything limber. This part of the class might also be used for relaxation, and I love using the last few stretches of the class to congratulate myself on my achievements that day. We did this in the Inverts and Climbs 101 workshop with Roz Mays, and it was a great way to round out the class.

I won’t lie to you – your first class will be tough. 

This is a form of movement you’ve probably never tried before, and you won’t necessarily pick things up quickly. If you have a background in dance or gymnastics, you might find it easier, but the most important thing in your first class is to go easy on yourself.

Tips for Your First Pole Dance Class

You won’t be graceful, and that’s okay

You won’t nail everything on your first lesson, and you’ll probably feel like you’re giving it your all at the World Gurning Championships. Trust me, two years in and I’m still catching myself making my “effort face” when I’m working on new things – and even some things I’ve been doing since I started pole. 

Feeling and looking graceful comes with time, practice, and dedication. For now, just make sure you’re not rushing through anything, you listen to your instructor, and you have fun.

Making things look effortless is a whole other ball game. Don’t worry about what expressions you’re pulling or what noises you’re making (unless they’re excessive – don’t be that person). There’s time to perfect your dancing technique down the line if you want to.

This is your time. Own it

There are many reasons why you might have chosen to take a pole dance class. Maybe, like me, you needed to get out of a rut. Maybe you heard from a friend about the fitness benefits and wanted to give it a try. You might want a hobby that lets you embrace your sexuality and celebrate it amongst a supportive group of friends. 

Whatever the reason you decided to dip your toe into our world, enjoy your time at the studio. Pole dance classes offer an awesome opportunity to connect and engage with your body, and they’ll help you find what movement feels good to you. Making the decision to try a pole dance class, particularly if it’s outside of your comfort zone, is a radical act of self-love, so take this time to treat your body well.

Most importantly, have fun with the process! Life’s too short to spend your free time doing things you hate.

Don’t take yourself too seriously

This is a meme that reads "Hey everybody! He's trying to learn a new skill and is kinda awkward and feels silly because he's still learning! See? Nobody cares, keep practicing, because getting good at something takes time. You're doing great, and I hope you become a master at whatever it is you're trying to learn"

I fall on my butt a LOT. I’m a clumsy person at the best of times and I’m only human with all the failings of human biology, so my grip fails from time to time. Pole class teaches you movements you’re not familiar with, using apparatus you’ve probably never used before, so you will find yourself wrapped in knots with no idea how you go there.

This happens to all of us. Every single person in your studio has landed a move and slooooowly slid to the floor as their grip points get sweaty. Everyone has to bail on a move from time to time. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and have a laugh with it.

The best thing I learned early on is if you feel self-conscious about messing something up, falling, or having to bail, just do jazz hands. No-one will laugh at you failing; they’ll be laughing at the fact you’re doing jazz hands. Trust me, works every time.

And, if they are laughing at you for failing, then that studio sucks and they’re not worthy of your company. 

…but do take your instructor seriously and know your limitations.

Your instructor is there to keep you safe and help guide you through the world of pole dance. Listen to them when they’re teaching you how to do a move, and when they suggest improvements to make to your practice. They’ve been training for a lot longer than you and they’re trained and insured to teach you, so they know how to keep you safe and prevent you from getting injured during the class.

Even if you’ve had some experience with dance or gymnastics, check your ego at the door and pay attention to your instructor.

There’s a reason they’ll be teaching you certain moves. Most beginner classes will focus on simple moves that’ll teach you the fundamental skills you need for pole dance. When you’ve picked up the fundamentals, and when they’ve got a better idea of your fitness levels and what you can do safely, you can work with them on more advanced moves. 

Don’t be afraid to ask for help!

You’re literally paying a qualified professional to teach you what to do, so if something isn’t working for you, ask!

Your instructor will have been practicing pole dance for years and will be able to help you and provide modifications to help you towards nailing whatever it is you’re working on. Sometimes all it takes is a slight adjustment to your positioning, actively thinking about engaging certain muscle groups, or even visualising the move in a different way.

Hell, I was practicing my Chair Spin for months before I trained with a different instructor who helped me visualise the move, and it improved instantly. 

Some moves can be trickier depending on your body type, and that’s perfectly normal. We all have different strengths. I’m plus size, and it takes me a lot longer to nail certain moves compared to the smaller people in my class. A good instructor will listen to you and help modify things to make them easier for you, and will be patient with you as you spend your time practicing things others might have moved on from.

Trust me, you’ll build strength quicker than you realise, and you will nail that tricky spin, lift, or hold. It comes in time as you learn where your limitations lie – and how to smash through them! 

Have fun!

I know it’s a bit cliché, but at the end of the day, paying for a class you don’t enjoy is the WORST. There’s nothing more soul-destroying than dragging yourself to a class that you’re not looking forward to. When you try out pole, give it everything you’ve got, have a laugh, and dip your toe into the world of pole dance. Who knows, you might find it as life-changing as the rest of us did!

After your Pole Dance Class

You probably won’t feel like doing much after your class, and if you’re anything like me, you’ll spend the entire cooldown thinking about what you’ve got in the fridge and how soon after opening your front door you can eat. 

It’s super important that after your first pole dance class, you take the time to recover properly. 

Eat a hearty meal, and enjoy a nice soak or shower

Make sure you get something to eat that has a good amount of protein to help you rebuild your muscles. I’ve found that consuming plenty of protein after a particularly heavy class – and this is your first class, so it’ll be heavy-going – reduces how bad and how long my DOMS last over the next few days. I tend to eat ready meals I buy from my local butcher as they’re quick to heat up, but omelettes, stir fries, and even a classic jacket potato with plenty of beans will do the trick. 

Taking a warm shower will feel magical after a long class, as by the time you get home you’ll be feeling weary and ready to fall into bed.

If you’ve got time, I definitely recommend soaking your muscles in a warm bubble bath with some Epsom salts, because if you’re not already familiar with DOMS, you probably will be soon.

Be ready for achy muscles

This meme reads "Trying to take off your sports bra after shoulders day. The struggle is real"

DOMS stands for Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness – the delayed part being it’s at its worst between 24-72 hours after exercise. It happens to everyone, and it’s a completely normal thing to experience after doing exercise that’s particularly strenuous, or that you’re not accustomed to. 

When you put stress on your muscles, you create microtears in the muscle fibres. This is a normal part of exercise, and it’s how your muscles grow. Every time you create these tears, your body repairs them and adapts so that the next time you exercise, you won’t cause the same damage. Protein powers muscle repair and growth, why is why I recommended eating plenty of protein after your pole dance class. 

Again, I’m not a nutritionist, and your nutritional needs will differ to mine. However, studies have been done into the effect of protein consumption on muscle soreness that have found that consuming high-quality protein can aid your recovery.

After a few classes your body will adjust to the amount of stress, so you might find you get DOMS less, or it lasts for a shorter amount of time, than when you started. It’s different for everybody. 

Epsom salts are amazing for DOMS as the magnesium will help reduce the inflammation, and doing some gentle stretching or foam rolling will help blood flow into the muscles and promote healing. I know you won’t feel like doing anything, but it will help ease your muscle aches. Plus, a cheeky massage will help to soothe the aches away!

Take a rest day

A fox asleep on top of a tree stump.

Rest days are vital in any training regime. Even if you’re not training anything else regularly, you’ll want to take the day after your pole class to allow your muscles to rest. 

You’ll have put your muscles under a lot of stress, so taking a rest day will give your body time to repair and recover. Doing some light activity like stretching, yoga, or foam rolling can help you stay active and will help the recovery process, but taking a day to rest will do your body and mind the world of good, particularly if you’re adding pole classes into a regular exercise routine. 


A comic with a diagram of all the different areas where a pole dancer ends up bruised, along with the names of moves that cause them.

Referred to among the pole community as ‘pole kisses’, you might notice some bruising on any grip points you’ve used during the class, depending on what you worked on.

Like any other bruise, these will be sensitive the first few times you get them, particularly if you get them on places like the tops of your feet (trust me, when you start learning to climb, you’ll hate shoes). 

Eventually, your skin will become conditioned to the pressure and you won’t get bruises as often. The bruises you do get might not hurt as much any more, if at all. You might even find yourself with an odd sense of pride over your bruises – and if you do, you’ll fit right in with the pole community!

If they hurt a lot and you want them gone, it’s worth getting yourself some Arnica Gel. I don’t use it myself, but I hear it’s a necessity if you bruise easily or you need to reduce the appearance of bruises quickly.

What Now?

Your first pole dance class is a great opportunity to dip your toe into the world of pole and aerial. You might know after the first lesson whether you want to carry on, or it might take you a few more lessons to form a full opinion. It’s not a form of movement that everyone gets along with, and that’s perfectly normal. Just because I love it doesn’t mean I think any less of you if you decide it’s not for you. 

You might even find that you like doing pole, but the style, studio, and/or instructor you took your class with doesn’t suit you – and you’re not obligated to stick with the first studio you try.

With pole dance becoming a more popular form of dance and exercise, studios are popping up all over the place, so you’re bound to find somewhere that works for you. 

And, if you decide not to carry on with pole classes, be proud that you jumped out of your comfort zone and gave it a go! It’s a tough workout at the best of times, so you’re pretty amazing for giving it a shot. 

Pole Dance Resources

If, after your first few classes, you’ve decided to join the wild world of pole dance, welcome! 

Here are some resources to help you get started:

Helpful Facebook Groups

You Know You’re A Poler When…

Celebrating Plus Size Pole Dancers

Pole Dance Garage Sale

Awesome Instagram Accounts

@sassandclacks (cheeky self-promotion…sorrynotsorry)










Pole Dance Blogs

Chrome Chronicles

Blogger On Pole


Pole with Peach

Celestial Bodies

Push and Pole




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