Tuesday, 28 August 2018

Aerial Hoop with Emily Ford (Contours Pole)

(Pic stolen from her FB)

“Emily has been training and teaching pole for 8 years, Aerial Hoop for the last 2 and comes from a background of over 20 years of Jazz, Modern, Contemporary, Ballet and Musical Theatre training, Emily found her love of Pole Dance and Fitness at the prestigious Bobbi's Pole Studio in Perth, Western Australia whilst teaching alongside 3x world champion Felix Cane. She has been expertly trained as a confident performer and a diligent dance and aerial teacher of all levels from beginner to advanced.”

Prior to recently (May 2018) I had only tried aerial hoop once about a year ago with Pole Fit London. I loved it right from that moment on, however my main focus is and has always been pole dance and as I didn’t have enough coin for both I left it at that one class, until late May this year.

I’ve known Emily and have had the pleasure of trying some of her classes for a while, but only recently have I tried aerial hoop with her, what can I say? Why on earth have I waited this long to try it?! I started going to her hoop classes at the same time I returned to pole dance classes after a very LOOONG break from it (which if you want an advice, don’t ever take long breaks from pole or even hoop, you’ll lose all the strength you worked so hard for), my strength was then at level -15, I am not even going to talk about my flexibility, so I was in for some “fun” self-torture time (I might be exaggerating).

Emily always starts with a vigorous stretch to get you nice and warm (and avoid injuries), moving on to some conditioning exercises, and then move on to trying to put a small routine together, normally this would be the point where you’d lose me, but Emily goes through every student, and if like me you’re struggling with something in particular she’ll find that and correct it for you, if need be adapt the routine with something that will work for you.

I attend the mixed level classes, which depending on the studio/instructor might be challenging for me personally, however this cannot be said about Emily’s classes, she is not only a great dancer but also a great teacher, furthermore she knows when she can push your limits a little further and when she needs to go easy on you. In only a few classes I can see and feel how much I have managed to progress, I have a lot more strength, flexibility and a lot more self confidence, and this is greatly because of her amazing work.

Contours Pole (owned by Emily) is also one of the best priced pole and hoop schools, which let's face it, in London the classes can be pretty expensive! However Emily always makes an effort to deliver very fairly priced classes and workshops (remember my review on Josh Taylor's workshop class review? it was via Contours Pole).

To conclude, I think it is pretty obvious how much I love Emily and her classes, also it is fair to mention that, Emily on top of being one of my aerial hoop teachers, she is also one of my pole dance teachers but I will write more about her pole dance classes some other time, until then I 100% recommend you to go over to Contours Pole by Emily Ford and try her wonderful classes, I can guarantee you that you’ll love it.

(still gotta work on that back flexibility)

Monday, 20 August 2018

Yayb Protein - Liquid chalk review

Whether you're new or experienced in the pole dancing world, you know that grip can be a big "enemy".

I've tried a few different grip aid sort products from pole supply  shops, however I always found these products extremely expensive and you don't get that much product for the price really. I was therefore on a personal quest (I might be exaggerating)  to find a good and yet affordable grip aid, and that led me to find Yayb Protein, I originally found them on Ebay, but they also have a website of their own where they always have some good deals.

You get 300ML for about £8 (prices vary as they often offer sales), it will offer you a non sticky feel and it dries really quickly leaving your hands smooth and ready to pole away. On top of offering you great grip, it will also save you some serious coin and last you for ages.

How about you, what grip aids have you used?

Yayb protein liquid chalk - direct link their chalk products are also entirely made in the UK!

Monday, 13 August 2018

Pole Junkie review

I was in need of a new pair of knee pads, and quite recently Creatures of XIX came out with a new design that seemed pretty sturdy, however when I tried to get it from their website it was out of stock, a fellow pole dancer advised me Pole Junkie had some in stock. I’ve heard of PJ before, but I never had the chance to purchase anything from them, so this was the perfect “excuse” to do so.
I checked their website, which is extremely easy to browse, put the item I wanted in the cart, and ended up adding an extra item that wasn’t really planned but seemed like a good option, platform protectors by X-otic Sox, it will help you keep your pretty platforms in good shape for longer, which in the long term saves you some coin.

The package arrived rather quickly, I bought it on a Friday and I received it the following Monday or Tuesday, well packed, each item was inside a smaller plastic pouch, and everything on the inside was in perfect condition, they also added some PJ flyers in

I got the knee pads in size M, as I wasn't too sure how they would fit, I think a size S would have been better, however the size can be adjusted on these so I didn't bother getting them replaced. The knee pads are extremely well made and so far these are the best knee pads I've had, the padding is rather thick, yet it does not look very big, it is rather discreet, and my knees don't bruise as much since I got these.
I paid £24 for the knee pads, cheaper than most pole brands and offers a greater protection.

The platform protectors are very pretty and well made, the fabric is reversible so you can either have it on the cobra pattern or simply black, they recently launched a new lace pattern, I am sad I didn't wait a little bit longer to buy mine :D
I paid £15 for the platform protectors, I find it a little pricey for simple platform protectors, it does look cute but you can also easily make these yourself if you fancy a bit of DIY.

Overall I am very satisfied with Pole Junkie, their services are very easy to use and you will receive your parcel a few days later. I am looking forward to see what PJ will be bringing next into their stock.

Friday, 3 August 2018

Bad ass exotic choreography with Jazzy K - workshop review

“Jazzy K is a pole dance instructor and performer based in Zurich, Switzerland. She is a regular teacher at Gravity Arts Dance Centre.
As teaching is her passion, it's an honour for her to also work for the pole instructor education program XPERT Pole & Aerial Fitness, teaching worldwide.
Next to giving her passion to others, Jazzy also enjoys performing a lot, and just earlier this year she won 2nd place at the Felix Cane Pole Championship (2018).”

I met Jazzy last year through Iris Pole Dance Studio and saw her performing at Pole Theatre UK, her style is badass, sexy and with a pinch of rock n roll, I was just amazed! Early this year she announced she would be back in London and teaching some of her new workshops at Pole People, I couldn’t help to feel excited about it and I obviously booked my space!

Arrived the day and I was ready to learn some new sexy moves. We started with a quick warm up and worked on our leg waves, moving on onto the actual routine, as we were (what seemed) far too many for the amount poles available in the studio, we were divided in two groups for the workshop, Jazzy being the experienced trainer she is, she managed this very well and we all got fair equal amount of time in the pole as well as time with her, to individually see us and assist us with required point. However I must say, should this have been the case last year (not having enough poles for everyone) I would have struggled a bit, just for the simple fact that I take a lot longer than most people to finally get into the routine, but this was more down to the studio itself and the way they managed the workshop, I would suggest that for future workshops of this size they take the bigger studio and limit spaces, PD workshops do not come in cheap for most people in London, so I personally think it is only fair to have individual workshops, however once more; it is important for me to stress the fact that this is not related to Jazzy herself, if anything I can only give her more credit for the way managed the time with all of us.

After the warm up Jazzy had us listen the song (and right there she had me, we would be dancing to “Killing strangers” by Marilyn Manson whom I just love and find his songs exceptionally beautiful paired with pole dance),  she explained the beats to which we would start the (which was of a really good help to me personally as I am not too good at counting the steps and figuring out when is the right time to do what). She then broke the routine into several steps, she would show each one of them at its time, we would do it together with her (about two reps for each part), she carefully examined how we were doing it, and answered any questions we had, to then proceed to the next part and so on until the routine was all put together and it was time to dance the entire routine.
I truly enjoyed the routine and was able to see a lot of improvement in my moves compared to last year’s workshop, although two completely different routines, last year’s routine had been hard for me to follow, not because it particularly hard, but because I was still quite new into the actual exotic dance part of poling, last year I was so worried about following every single step that my fellow polerinas, that I ended up not truly enjoying it for myself, whereas this time, my perception was better and I was able to move through the music and enjoy myself as I was going.

Came the end of the session and we were honoured to see Jazzy dance for us, I can never tire of seeing her move around the pole, she is so graceful and sexy at the same time, and quite unique in her own style.

I think by now you have already guessed that I absolutely loved this workshop and came out feeling so much more confident of my poling skills, so I must say THANK YOU Jazzy for being such an inspiring woman and teaching us so many beautiful moves, I look forward to attending more of your incredible workshops.

Also, I hear Jazzy will be back to the UK in November 2018 for Pole Weekender, and I am really hoping I can go and go to another workshop with her, she always brings something new and empowering for her students, so why not take the weekend, you could visit Sheffield a beautiful and rich in culture city and at the same time, dance with one of the biggest pole dancers.