You may have noticed that I’ve been a bit quiet recently – not many posts or pics until a few days ago. Sorry, I’ve been busy!
I’ve been at the UK Pole Dance and Fitness Convention in Blackpool. I’ve not been before and had no idea what to expect when I got there. I was competing over the weekend, but ended up doing so much more than I thought I would!
I did as much research as I could, (as I usually do) to have more of an idea of what it would be like. My partner and I decided to go from Thurs – Sun (getting home on Mon) to really make the most of it.
Thursday – PoleFreaks Speech and Milano Pro Sport Catwalk
First my partner (who does a lot of the tech side of PoleFreaks, helps me train and is learning to pole) and I made a speech about PoleFreaks. It was at the launch party in front of a room full of polers and people in the pole industry that I greatly respect. James is a natural speaker and can stand up and talk in front of anyone. Usually I can, but not when I’m talking about myself and something I’ve created and really care about. I was amazed to find that so many people in the room knew what PoleFreaks was! Hello if you’re reading this 😀
Almost immediately after this speech, I did a fashion show for Milano Pro Sport. Again this was in front of the same amazing people. Nerves were already high but I had nothing to lose, and beautiful clothes to wear. I loved every minute of the show. It was amazing and unbelievable to have Pantera (!) backstage telling us that we could do it, and then warming up for her performance. (It’s hard not to get distracted when you have a pole legend doing handstand push ups in front of you!)
I’ve never considered wearing a leotard to pole in but was pleasantly surprised by how well everything form Milano Pro Sport fit, and how secure everything felt (no popping out anywhere!) I think leotards will start making an appearance in my poling wardrobe! They also left me with loads of goodies to take home and pole in – thank you! 😀
Friday – Workshop And A Private With Dakota Fox
On Friday the first competitions started. We had Doubles, the Mature category, Pole2Pole Blackpool Amateur and Professional heats, and the European Championships.
I saw as much as I could (I had to leave the room to do a workshop and private) and everyone was amazing! It was so great to see all different styles of pole and the routines that everyone came up with. The pole community is so welcoming, and everyone in the audience was cheering no matter who was onstage or what level they were.
I did a workshop and a private with Dakota Fox, which were both awesome and extremely helpful. I won’t go into what was taught in the workshop, but I am writing about our private session which will be posted soon. Needless to say, both were very worthwhile and I will definitely do more sessions with Dakota again.
Saturday – The Competition
It might sound silly to do a workshop and private the day before I did a competition, but I took it relatively easy in both, stopping if I thought it was too much for me. I mostly wanted to get in some pole action and to keep up my strength. The last time I was on a pole was Wed morning – and for me, Wed to Sat is a long time to go without touching a pole, especially before a competition.
When I compete I’m a bag of nerves, and this time was no different. I was competing in the Pole2Pole Professional Cup Final, having come 2nd in the Essex heat of the same competition. I knew a lot of polers in this competition from previous comps and workshops, and they are all amazing.
I spent the day trying to eat healthily, drinks lots (tea and water) and not letting the nerves get the better of me.
I can’t quite believe it still, but I manage to come first! It was all such a blur, I can’t really remember how it went. I know I was slipping on parts and didn’t hold some moves as long as I perhaps wanted, but I just wanted to go out there and do the best I could, and I did. As soon as I came off stage, I was happy with how I did, which I think is the main thing. When they announced I had won, I couldn’t believe it (and still can’t!) and yes, I did cry onstage!
Usually when I finish competing, I feel like a weight has been lifted. However, placing meant that I was then automatically entered into the British Isles Pole Dance Champion competition (which I had entered anyway!) and I couldn’t rest yet.
Sunday – The Next Competition and A Wink Catwalk Show
Luckily on Sunday, the British Isles Pole Dance Champion competition was a bit earlier at 3pm, so there was not as much time to be nervous. I was also asked to do a fashion show for Wink (which I was very excited about) straight after the competition.
I did the same routine as before. I think my Saturday performance was best, but I’m happy with how both went. All of the other competitors were amazing on the pole and so lovely backstage. I am now friends with so many amazing polers. I’m super happy to say that I also managed to win this competition! I really can’t believe it – I’m so happy 😀
As soon as I won, I went straight into the fashion show for Wink (meaning I had to take off my sash and medal!) The clothes I wore were beautifully made, lovely to look at and fit so well. I decided to buy one of the outfits that I was wearing, and was allowed to keep the other. I’m a very lucky lady. I’m so happy to have been asked to model for Wink with 2 beautiful ladies – it was such a great end to being onstage that weekend.
After my competition, it felt so great to be able to sit and watch the last competition – The Blackpool Pole Dancing Champion competition, without being nervous. I got to watch all of the lovely polers I had been backstage with. The standard was so high and there are now so many new polers I admire, and am friends with 😀
Across the whole weekend, the standard was unbelievable. I’m so happy I placed, and so happy that I’m in the same category with such strong, skilled polers. All in all, a great weekend. I’m taking my time to get back into training as I’ve now been automatically entered into the European Championships! If you’ll excuse me, I’m off to watch some tv and eat some chocolate. 😀