Florida Pole Fitness Championship 2012

I competed in my very first competition, the Florida Pole Fitness Championship, last spring in Orlando! It was only 11 months after my first pole class, so I was in the amateur division, and I definitely knew nothing about competing beforehand. Almost exclusively, I watched Alethea Austin and Karol Helms videos, so I assumed everyone wore heels in competitions. That combined with my love of heels led me to naturally put together a routine wearing heels. I chose a super fun Miley Cyrus song, and decided to smile and dance my way through it. Since I was just in the amateur division, I only had to use one pole, which I did. Looking back, I wish I’d used both! I really skimped on the 20 second floorwork requirement, too, and it’s kind of embarrassing to watch back.  Hey, at least I had fun!

I had an absolute blast, and while I didn’t place, I got great feedback from the judges (including Karol Helms herself!).

Steven Retchless! I saw him on America’s Got Talent last summer!
Karol is so sweet!

And now for the video: I think it’s pretty obvious I was having a blast on that stage!

Pursuit of Happiness – Kid Cudi

I put this routine together early spring 2012 but only recently recorded it. I’m apparently horrible at writing down descriptions of moves, because I couldn’t figure out what I was doing half the time, and I hadn’t written down any choreography for the end of the routine, so I ended up free-styling quite a bit. I like the song and I think I might work more with it in the future because this choreography is a little boring. Feel free to leave suggestions in the comments!

Animal I Have Become – Three Days’ Grace

I really needed to do something different from the pop/hip-hop songs I had been doing. And look, no windshield wipers! And no sexy walking to the pole for 8 counts at the beginning! This was the first time running through the routine so I know there are some mistakes. Also, I free-styled from about 2:15 to the end of the song, so some of that will definitely change before I teach it in class. Hopefully I’ll be able to add a video of the class performing it as well because I think it’ll look good with a group of girls doing it in sync. The butterfly leg body rolls will be a challenge, I think, especially when we reverse them the second time through.

Boomerang – DJ Felli Fel et al.

This was another routine where I put together a combination on my right side then repeated it on my left. This proved to be a much more difficult routine than I originally thought it was going to be: I normally teach my routine over 1, maybe 1 1/2 classes and then go through it several times in the second class. This routine took two weeks just to teach the first half. I think there were some quick transitions that were hard enough on the right side, and when it was time to translate everything to the left, it was a little difficult for our brains to make the switch. Good practice though, and now I know I need to slow some things down a bit for class routines. It isn’t one of my favorite routines, but I think it’s fun.

As Long As You Love Me – Justin Bieber ft. Big Sean

This is another one of my favorites, and I think a class favorite as well. I tried to incorporate some chair into my routine for the first time and while I think it worked out, I’m not a huge fan of chair in general. I think I need to think outside of the box and get creative with the moves I do with the chair. Also, I use windshield wipers way too much in my routines! Time to stop relying on the simple, standby moves and do something new.

One More Night – Maroon 5

This is one of my favorite routines so far. It’s fun, pretty simple to learn, but doesn’t look boring or repetitive. (I hope!) This is one of the first routines where I put together a combination on my right side – my natural-feeling, “good” side – and then repeated the combination on my left side. I really think it’s important to work both sides so our “good” side doesn’t get stronger and our “bad” side doesn’t get weaker. It’s still hard for me to translate simple moves – step-around, spin-up, fan kick – to my left side. During this filming, we also found out it’s hard just to turn around and face the other side of the room! We normally face the mirrors but due to lighting reasons, we faced the other direction and we found that simply facing the other direction confused us. It’s good to change things up and make our brains work hard! My camera also ran out of memory so the end of the routine was cut off, but the majority of the choreography was recorded.

Call Me Maybe – Carly Rae Jepsen

I teach sexy pole (and sometimes chair) dance and I try to get video of each routine. I usually teach the routine over two weeks and record it at the end of the second class (each class is 45 minutes long and has beginner, intermediate and advanced students in it). This is the first one I have on video. I don’t even particularly like the song, but so many girls requested it that I had to put together a routine!