Pole dancing can be a pretty risky sport, particularly as you advance and learn more daring tricks. When a dancer begins classes she can pretty much be at any fitness level and work from there towards whatever goals she may have.
There are a few things that should be done to minimize the chance of injury for any dancer. She should be totally and completely sure that she is healthy enough to take part in an exercise program. If she is even the least bit unsure, she should discuss it with her physician.
Basic safety rules should be followed like: keeping your arms engaged, even in simple tricks such as a fireman spin. If you do not engage the muscle group supporting the muscles you are using, you put yourself at risk for lots of injuries.
Take your time when working up to a new move. Pole dancing can be a strength intensive sport so make sure to work up to a move and that your technique from grip to alignment is letter perfect.
When you are working on a new trick, have someone spot you and use a mat if it is at all risky. The best advice I can offer is to learn how to bail out of trick before you work the trick itself and learn how to fall properly – protecting your spine.
Fortunately, most serious pole injuries are preventable and the vast majority of injures are just inconveniences that can easily be laughed off. These commonly include:
- Bruises. You will bruise in places you didn’t know you could bruise in. Have faith, once you get good at a trick the bruising minimizes until you try and add something new to it, and then you’ll get a ton of new ones. When I learned how to climb, I thought my feet would fall off; the tops of them were covered in bruises. Once my technique was perfected and my strength improved, I could climb like a monkey and not bruise. You may get stuck explaining some pretty interesting bruises to non-poling people though. Sometimes, they can look quite scary.
- Ruined Pedicures. Don’t waste the money. Kiss your pedicures goodbye. Or get one after pole.
- Inability to dance in a non-pole manner. I and several other pole friends no longer dance outside of the studio. Booty shaking is not always appropriate.
- Leaving skin on the pole. This one is common. Remember being a kid and blistering from the monkey bars? Same idea. Much harder to blame on monkey bars as an adult though.
- Callouses. Blisters often turn into callouses. These can be rough. Look out.
- Floor burn. Floor work is hard work! Don’t discount it. I have on several occasions gotten floor burn from working the floor a little too enthusiastically. Some people just have dirty minds.
On a funny note, at one point I broke a toe pole dancing. I kicked the pole and it hurt. Explaining the injury to my doctor was a little embarrassing. Thankfully, he was aware of pole for fitness and was very helpful.
Pole dancing is supposed to be fun. It is supposed to be a release. Let it be that. Work at your level. Listen to your body and never pole alone if you are working on risky tricks.