12 things you should know before your first pole class

So you’ve signed yourself up to start a pole class? Yay… you’re going to love it!

Pole fitness is a great way to condition your body, build up strength, improve coordination and develop flexibility.

We know it can be daunting when you’re not sure what to expect so here’s a heads up before your first class to make it a little less scary.

What to wear

For your first class, you won’t need anything more than your usual workout gear. Leggings or shorts with a sports bra and vest top will be perfect. Since you will be learning the fundamentals of spins, don’t worry about investing in expensive pole outfits, knee pads or pleasers just yet.

Arrive early

Try to arrive to class 10 to 15 minutes early. This will give you enough time to get changed, fill out any disclosure forms and say hello to the other newbies. It’s not a great look if you rock up late and interrupt the warm up. If you’re going to be late, let your instructor know – they will appreciate it.

It’s ok if you don’t nail each move first time

No one is expecting you to be perfect and able to nail every new move first time. It doesn’t matter if it takes one attempt or 100 attempts to get it right. Just keep at it and never say “I can’t do it”. Determination is more important than your ego so just because another student might get it first time, don’t let that put you off. Practice makes perfect after all.


Ah yes… lets talk about some of the weird and wonderful bruises you’ll get. You’ll have them on your arms, thighs, legs and feet. The best bit? The more you practice, the more you’ll get and then you’ll start comparing them with your class mates. They will be your badge of honour and you’ll be proud to show them off to anyone that will look.

Whatever you do, DON’T MOISTURISE!

Unless you fancy fighting a losing battle by slipping down the pole because you have zero grip, then don’t go near the moisturiser. Even when you get a bit sweaty, it’s hard to hold on so make wiping down your pole a habit. Trust us… we know.

You’ll get super dizzy

Practising spin after spin will inevitability leave you feeling a bit queasy. When you spin, the fluid in your ears sloshes about creating that ‘super drunk dizzy’ feeling. The secret is to alternate each side rather than training the same time continiously.

Another way is prevent dizziness is to practice ‘spotting’. Dancers train this by turning their head quicker than their body and finding one focal spot in the room. Try it – it might work for you.

Forget anything you’ve seen on Instagram

Don’t even bother trying anything you’ve seen on Instagram. More often than not, the people you see pulling epic moves on Insta have been training for a long time and make even the hardest moves look easy. Building up a solid foundation during your initial training is the best way to improve and develop a good skill set. Correct form is key to preventing injury and working your way up to those trickier moves.

Leave your ego at the door

Everyone is here to learn and no one wants to be around another student who thinks that they are better than everyone else. If you are able to nail a move straight away or have more strength than someone else then for the love of God, don’t rub it in! Being a show off won’t win you any friends and is likely to piss off your teacher as well. It’ll be awesome that you managed to do your first spin spot on so just enjoy the moment and be humble.

Forget the photoshoot

There will be plenty of time to get lots of pictures to fill up your social feed but not in your first class. Learning the basics and paying attention is more important. Being distracted by your phone will prevent you from listening and understanding the instructions from your teacher properly and at worst you might end up hurting yourself.

You’ll be sore in the morning

If you’re not used to working out or Are new to using your upper body then you’re gonna feel it in the morning. Your arms, shoulders and back are likely to hurt and will take a day or two to recover. Remember to eat lots of protein rich food, drink lots of water and get plenty of sleep.

Don’t be self conscious

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Forget what you’ve seen on YouTube or social media – not everyone is super slim, rocking a 6 pack and a huge round booty. Pole is for ALL body shapes whether you’re short, tall, lean or curvy and you should be proud of how you look. Don’t worry about anyone else and flaunt what you have! If nothing else, pole will give you the confidence to strut around the studio in your sexy shorts without a care in the world.

Most importantly…have fun

Finally, just have fun. You’re not there to compete with anyone, you’re there to learn and have fun. Yes it might be tough and yes it might hurt but smiling and having a laugh will make it a lot easier.

If you’re interested in trying it out a class, then I highly recommend you check out Aerial Empire which is owned and ran by Emily Hawthorne. Located 10 mins walk from Leeds City Bus Station, Aerial Empire offer a range of classes suitable for all abilities and at very reasonable prices.