I go through phases of loving different types of training. Sometimes I constantly just pole, stretch, do cardio or weights. I get bored easily so my routine changes often but I am quite good at training in specific ways.
So I started to think about my pole training and have come to realise that recently I’ve been training my strength on the pole rather than training specific moves. There is nothing wrong with this sort of training of course – strength work ultimately leads to strong moves anyway.
I think there needs to be a healthy balance of both strength training and training moves. I can go for hours training strength where only my hands touch the pole so it’s incredibly important to train the moves that made me love pole in the first place.
There are so many different ways to train your strength on the pole. Below I am focusing on the strength work that ultimately leads to moves, rather than thinking of doing multiple climbs or V Inverts. (Both good workouts though!)
Here is a quick overview of how I train. Make sure you train to your own level and have a mat and spotter – safety first!
The aim for this is to be able to deadlift your legs from the floor into a handstand with one hand on the pole and the other on the floor. I also then take this to a Batman (pic to left)
I place one hand on the floor and one hand on the pole and try to lift my legs to straddle up to a handstand without kicking up. Yes this is difficult. The key is to try and keep both hands straight – the one on the floor is the most difficult to keep straight.
Before you try this (with a spotter, of course) try kicking up to a pole handstand. If that’s okay you can then jump to a tuck and lift your legs. Then try jumping to a low straddle and lift from there. You can then try your straddle up with a jump. Oh, and when these all feel easy, you can add ankle weights too
Deadlift Prep – Lifts
The aim here is to be able to deadlift into an Ayesha.
I am quite literally working on my deadlifts daily and am training my cup grip and normal grip. I occasionally train my twisted grip but not as often as I don’t want shoulder injuries from overtraining.
You place your inside arm low – fingers to the ground, and your outside arm high. Make sure you keep your inside leg forward and your outside leg behind – in a Front/ Back Hook position or Attitude position. The aim is to try and lift your legs off the ground and hold. This is a lot trickier than it sounds.
Deadlift Prep – Handspring
The aim here again is to be able to deadlift into an Ayesha – your body starts in a slightly different position than with the above.
For this you want to start in the same position as for your lifts and then turn your hips away from the pole. Keep looking up. You want to pull with your top hand and push in with the bottom.
The ultimate aim is to be able to lift your legs up into an Ayesha. For now, try to do a kick up into Ayesha with as little momentum as possible – let your arms do the work.
Shoulder Mount – Lowers
The ultimate aim here (for me at least) is to be able to do a Shoulder Mount walk down, or to hold a Shoulder Mount Plank.
Make sure you have a strong shoulder mount and preferably can lift up rather than kick up into it.
Go up into your Shoulder Mount tuck. Point your legs up to the ceiling. Keep looking up. You want to keep your legs together and lower them down as slowly as possible. You will find that you get part of the way easily (or easier than the next part!) and then your legs drop to the floor. You will get further and further every time you try. Be careful of your back and shoulders on this one and take a lot of rest.
An old one but a good one. I am aiming to climb while on a spinning pole without using my legs, so pulls up are a great way to start working on this.
Make sure you always lift into your pull ups, rather than jumping. Have your stomach on the pole as you start normal pole pull ups. Keep your arms high but make sure they have a slight bend to help you get up. Work on slowing and controlling your movements.
However you train, make sure you work both sides of your body. Try and add strength training into your workouts, if only by doing climbs or pull ups at the end of your workout. You’ll get much stronger in no time