Athens Vertical Pole Dance Academy is approaching its one-year anniversary in September. Instructors Ann Lily-Woodruff and Eleanor Kuntz explained the fitness benefits of their favorite exercise. Between their own workout and teaching, they spend 10 to 12 hours each week at the Academy. They come from varied backgrounds, Ann from many years as an aerial performer and Eleanor, a classically trained Russian ballerina.
You do not need a certain level of fitness to begin. Any one can get a good workout because the teachers incorporate plenty of floor work in the beginner level classes. Ann and Eleanor want everyone to experience success so they try hard to provide just what their clientele needs to have fun while they exercise – from various kinds of props to detailed instruction. Music varies from Latin and hip-hop to Cirque Du Soleil and burlesque.
When you take a class, you will work on general conditioning, hips, shoulders, wrists, and abdominals. People are surprised at the cardio workout they get. Students are amazed at how much enjoyment they can have while exercising. Even in the beginner classes you’ll learn a dance routine that will leave you feeling like a princess.
If you enjoy the workout, you can progress through various training levels. Several factors influence progression – body type, grip strength, sweat factor and confidence. You don’t have to aim for a Level 4 or 5 workout, though, to get incredible benefits. First timer Kellie Walker said “I’m 40 pounds overweight, I have no upper body strength and I thought I would fall off the pole. I decided to just have fun with it and I did”. She is hooked and can’t wait to return.
What kind of workout will you get with vertical pole dancing?Depending upon your weight, you can burn 350 (150 lbs) to 480 (180 lbs) calories per hour. If you like the sounds of that, watch for their anniversary special – first timers first class is $10. Beginner classes are held Tuesday through Friday evenings. Check out their facebook page for more info. Manager Tina Ridley can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 706.347.3708 to schedule weekend pole dance parties or answer questions.