Why You Should Compete on The Pole
Competing is a long, scary journey that takes us to a whole new level of scared. Yet despite knowing all of this, I still compete.
Every time I do, I say to myself ‘why do I keep doing this’ but as soon as I get onstage, I love every second.
Competing adds a whole new level to pole that you never really knew about. You don’t have to be able to hold an Iron-X or do a Spatchcock to win.
You pretty much have to be yourself – and you are awesome at that.
New Ways To Train
When I’m working on a new routine, I usually have combinations that I want to nail for it. In my second competition, I wanted to nail my Superman to Titanic to an Aerial Shoulder Mount. I practiced this over and over and over again until finally I got closer. While I didn’t manage to do my Titanic to an Aerial invert, I did manage to get my Superman to an Aerial Should Mount. And that was certainly good enough for me.
I find that I create new and interesting combinations while trying to be as creative as possible. I don’t like to add in the move of the moment or the combination that is flying around the internet. There’s simply no point – if you’ve seen it, others will have as well, and who wants to see 20 Superman Flips in a row?
To do that I hang around (literally) in a move I know I definitely want to add in. From there I explore where my body can go. Our bodies are amazing – they remember so much and can help us get a knee hook that reminds us of another move that we might be able to melt into from there. Sometimes the combinations don’t work – like the ones you dream up just before bed, and others go into amazing new moves that become your new favourites.
What I love about competing (the events I’ve entered, at least) is that you don’t have to work through a tick list of moves. You can of course, but you don’t have to. I love coming up with pretty shapes and holds that the audience won’t immediately think ‘that’s a Gemini’ but will remember as being really cool.
Some competitions will have that tick list and that can be great for helping you train moves that you don’t often focus on.
I get so much stronger, more flexible and more confident when training for competitions. I always train every combination on both sides because sometimes you nail it perfectly on the side that you wouldn’t have thought.
With the actual routine itself, I only work on one side or it will confuse me on the day.
When you train both sides and for a routine, you are probably training to a higher level more frequently than perhaps usual. This makes me so much stronger doing aerial invert after aerial invert. The same applies to flexibility. I know I need to show a certain level of flexibility and competing forces me to work on that.
All in all, my body feels the benefits of a competition.
The Social Aspect
Most of my pole friends online are those I meet in competitions. There is such a great sense of caring that it really helps you get through your routine.
I’ve definitely made friends for life over the 5 competitions that I’ve done.
No matter what the outcome, or how badly the nerves get you – the positives will always outweigh the negatives, I promise.
You only have to make yourself proud, and you know you will. So what are you waiting for?
Go and find your competition to train for 😀
Have you ever competed? If so, how did you feel?