Try a beginner or introductory pole dancing class if you have never been on a pole before. This is a great way to get introduced to the pole, get the feel of it and what your body weight is like on and against it.
The energy and excitement are usually high in these classes as most of the students are eager to learn, try their newly-learned moves, share their knowlege and help others learn as well.
A freestyle session to practice what you learned in class
Individualized instruction and help, depending on how many are in the class
A cool down
If you are taking an Open-Level or a more advanced class (usually after completing a beginner 6-10 week series) you will learn more about:
How to start inverting
How to take your climbing to the next level
Combinations of all of these
I don't feel comfortable trying this with others...
All studios have a different style of teaching and dance instruction and different approaches to the sensual aspects of pole dancing and being courteous of the fact that there are absolute beginners.
Hopefully your local studio has an instructor who is compassionate and understanding of the fact that you are trying a new sport that is foreign to your body and will help gently introduce you in a positive way to pole.
Try asking the instructor some questions before you attend class or take a private session first so that you can get more of an idea of what you will be doing in a group setting. I have had really positive and fun experiences in pole classes as a beginner and as an advancing student. The other students are for the most part encouraging and applaud when you finally "get it"!
If you are still uneasy about taking a class, and you want to try it out in privacy, choose and buy a pole, (and they can be affordable), purchase a instructional dvd or subscribe to online lessons like Studio Veena offers which are awesome to learn from...I am still learning from her! She is clear in her instruction and it is easy to follow her moves.
The benefits of taking a pole dancing class
You get to take classes with others for the fun and social aspects of it
You build a sisterhood with those you learn with
Also, it keeps you motivated because you are performing in front of others
You can help those other ladies that may be having a hard time learning a specific move or trick.