How To Do A Basic Invert

June 11, 2012 at 1:41 pm

Inverting on the pole is probably going to be the first terrifying thing you will learn when pole dancing.  The advice below should help prepare you for your first invert and keep you in control for many more inverts to come.

Practice Your Invert From The Floor:


1. Lie on the floor with the pole by your waist, with your strongest arm closest to the pole.  Place your inside and strongest arm over the pole to grip it between your arm and body. Place your outside and weakest arm above your inside arm on the pole.

2. Bend your legs, still keeping your feet on the ground. Arrange your body closer to the pole so that you have a good grip with your hands. Whilst holding your abs tight, lift both legs off the ground so that your feet are in the air with your legs straight. Lift your bottom off the ground so that most of your back is also off the ground.

3. Place your outside leg over the front on the pole. Place your inside leg on the back of the pole and grip both legs tightly on the pole. You might need to twist your body slightly towards the pole to do this.

This is the basic position that your legs will end up in. From this position on the ground you can use your arm strength to allow you to slide your legs higher up the pole so that less of your body is on the ground. You can also grip the pole tightly with your legs and use your abs to lift the top half of your body off the ground.

How to do a basic invert:

CrucifixWhen learning to invert for the first time it is often easier to swing your outside leg to help give you a little momentum to get upside down. After a while you will be able to invert just by using your arms and abs, jumping or doing an aerial invert, depending on what you want to do.

 Stand next to the pole with your strongest arm as your inside arm. Place your arms as in the practice with your inside arm lower on the pole, with your hand about shoulder height. Place your outside arm slightly above your inside arm on the pole.

2. Swing your outside leg backwards and forwards to get the feel of lifting off. When you’re feeling confident with this, swing your outside leg and tuck both legs up to your chest. The idea here is to hold your body weight up. When you can confidently hold your body weight allow your head and body to tip back slightly to get the feeling of going upside down.

Going Upside Down:

If you have a spotter have them stand near your head so that they don’t get kicked when you are inverting and they can safely guide you down to the ground if necessary.

3. While gripping the pole, swing your outside leg forward and jump off the ground with your inside leg. Place your outside leg as vertically as you can over the front of the pole and your inside leg behind the back of the pole. Your legs should be in contact with the pole from the feet up to your inner thighs. You should feel like you have one leg crossed over the other. Grip tightly onto the pole with your legs.

4. When you have a tight enough grip on the pole you should be able to move you head and shoulders around the other side of the pole so that you body is mostly in a straight line. This is the basic invert.

The Basic Invert is a key move to master if you really wish to progress with your pole dancing. From the basic invert you can go in to the Crucifix hold or the Thigh hold, or more complicated moves such as the Gemini and the Butterfly.

Inverting Tips:

  • The hardest part of inverting is more the mental side of being upside down, rather than the gripping. Think positively that you will go upside down, otherwise your body will subconsciously try to stop you.
  • Keep your body in control. If you do not have a good enough grip on the pole, do not try to invert. Do not get too excited and take a running jump at the pole as this may cause you to lose control.
  • Sometimes your hands will be in the way of your legs when trying to grip on to the pole. Depending on whereabouts your hands are getting trapped, you can either move your hands higher or lower on the pole before inverting so they end up in a different position when you have inverted. If this doesn’t solve your problem when you have inverted you can tightly grip on to the pole using the lower half of your legs, and loosen the grip with the upper thighs to allow you to move your hands.
  • Inverting takes a lot of time and practice – it is an important move to get right so make sure you take your time to really master it. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you struggle at first – it is one of those moves that once you have got it, you will always be able to do it.

If you have any problems or questions about Inverting please contact us at FireFly Poles and we will be able to help you to get upside down (and stay there) in no time at all!