I had the pleasure of interviewing pole dancer Julia from Germany who is becoming known for her grace and agility in her pole dancing.
Where are you from?
I´m from Germany
When did you start learning to Pole Dance?
I started Pole Dancing in the end of 2009. I started with a very cheap and unstable pole and was really happy when I got my first professional pole as a Christmas present.
When I started there were no schools near my home and the classes were really expensive, so I decided to learn Pole Dance on my own.
Do you own a studio or instruct?
I only give private lessons at home. I´ve always loved teaching and I like the fact that I can offer my lessons really cheap because I teach at home. Although teaching in a school would be great, too.
What made you try Pole Dancing?
I saw it on TV and was totally fascinated by the combination of dance and acrobatic tricks. When I saw Pole Dance for the first time I was anyway looking for a new sport and this one just seemed to fit perfectly to me.
I always loved to dance since nursery school and although I never got teached in gymnastics I liked to do those exercises at school, too.
How often do you train?
As my pole is in the middle of our living room I do at least one trick or spin every day when waiting for the meal to be finished or when I need a little break from studying.
About three times a week I train seriously.
Which move has taken you the longest to learn?
Definitely the Twisted Grip Lift. When I started practicing this trick it seemed unreachable. I still remember the feeling when I finally did my first lift. It was awesome!
What is your favorite move?
That´s hard to decide, there are so many pretty moves. The Twisted Grip Lift is one of my favorites as I´m very proud that I managed to learn this trick and I love all the variations you can do once you´re in the handstand.
But I also love the tricks I discovered on my own. The first was the Emotion, I wanted to try the Knot but hooked my leg wrong and the second one is the Inverted Lotus. I´m not sure whether anyone else did them before, but at least I haven´t seen them yet.
Have you ever competed and if you have how did you find the experience?
No, I never competed. Maybe I will try it next year, if I´m brave enough. We don´t have many possibilities in Germany to compete as a Pole Dancer so you have to take part in those great competitions like Miss Pole Dance Germany or Miss Polefitness Germany. I don´t feel ready at the moment for such a competition.
Do you perform regularly?
I also never performed as a Pole Dancer. But I already started thinking about it in the last weeks as I would love to share my passion about pole dance with others.
What is your greatest achievement so far in pole dance?
I think every new trick I learn is a great achievement, especially those which need some more practice.
I also love when my students learn new tricks and think this is maybe even a better achievement. It´s great when you see them hanging on the pole with their legs for the first time and I´m looking forward to the day when I can start to teach them handsprings, shoulder mounts and all those other beautiful advanced tricks!
Do you have a favorite grip tip or product that you use?
When I practice I only use a towel and clean my pole afterwards with glass cleaner. But when I do a freestyle or choreography I use Tite Grip, which always worked well for me.
How did you start learning to pole dance? Did you ever use any dvds?
I started at home with a very cheap Pole Dance set, which included two DVDs. I learned all my first tricks and spins with this DVDs although I couldn´t understand the language.
Afterwards I used YouTube to learn more new tricks by watching and trying to copy them.
What are your feelings about pole dancing for fitness being associated with exotic dance/stripping?
I think every pole dancer should be aware of the fact that pole dance has two histories: the exotic one and the acrobatic Chinese one.
Without that exotic side pole dance maybe never became so sensual and maybe the dancing part even wouldn´t exist.
As long as nobody compares me with an exotic dancer or stripper I don´t care about it.
What advice would you give to someone who is thinking of giving pole dancing a try?
I would advise him/her to learn at least the basics from a good teacher and if he/she wants to practice at home I would tell him/her to buy a professional pole, because safety is very important especially once you start to invert.
And of course I would tell him/her that she will love it. I never met a person until now who went to a pole dance class or workshop and wasn´t totally enthusiastic afterwards.
Do you think pole dancing should be included in the Olympic Games?
Sure, why not. Gymnasts show their tricks on horizontal poles, so why shouldn´t pole dancers demonstrate vertical tricks.
Do you have a website?
Yes, since the middle of august my own website is online http://emotioncatcher.em.funpic.de/
I designed everything on my own. Originally I made my website to present myself as a pole dancer, but now the main part are my tutorials.
With my tutorials I want to give everyone the chance to learn Pole Dance at home and for free. But if someone has the possibility to go to a school, I would still recommend it.
I also have a YouTube channel where I upload my tutorials and post also videos of my training or some freestyles: http://www.youtube.com/user/emotioncatcher