Pole dancing has arrived in Macomb Township, but it is not what you think.
A class open house was held Jan. 21 and we couldn't help but stop by to take a peek.
Yes, there is a pole involved, but these classes are not teaching stripping or exotic dancing. This is a bona fide form of exercise that increases general body and core strength by using the body itself to provide resistance. The focus here is on fun, camaraderie and exercise.
"We have spent a long time trying to dispel the notion that pole dancing is only for strippers because it started in the male entertainment industry," said Jessica Reynolds, Pole Addiction owner and instructor. "I first saw it on the Best Damn Sports Show when Tom Arnold was being taught pole dancing by crunch instructors out of L.A.
"I started looking for classes myself because I thought it would be fun. Six years ago we found a business plan model and we started the class in my basement. It was me and my girlfriend with a pole, chocolate and red wine–I quickly lost 30 pounds!"
Once Reynolds’ idea took shape, the demand began to grow, especially among Macomb County women.
"My phone has not stopped ringing since I put our Macomb class flyer on the website," Reynolds said. "I first test-announced it in our 7,000-plus customer newsletter and the response was overwhelming. We had to hurry to put this together because everyone wanted us here. We had people signing up for the class even before the open house, which isn't usually the case. In fact, we even have someone coming from Mexico."
Reynolds found the perfect home, and future student, at Manda’s.
“We are ecstatic to have Pole Addition teach their classes here,” said Manda Moore, Manda’s owner. “These classes are not offered at any other studio or recreation center as far as I can tell. This is a total first for Macomb Township. I've been interested in trying it myself when I just recently heard about it."
Moore and friends came across the idea of pole dancing for exercise while searching for something to do for her bachelorette party.
"There were no classes around here, so part of this is a selfish thing because I want to try it," Moore said.
In addition to Reynolds, there were a number of instructors at the open house to demonstrate and teach the art of this dance as well as to educate on its benefits and intrigue.
"I've been pole dancing for four years, teaching for 2.5 of those,” said Cindy Neville, Pole Addiction instructor. “I basically started and never left the classroom. It's a great way to work out without knowing you are working out and a wonderful way to build self-confidence. You feel really sexy but it's not erotic. I've never had girls feel uncomfortable; we all just have a good time."
Pole Addiction is currently taking registrations for its Tuesday night class at Manda’s and in case you were wondering, there are no coed classes currently available.
“Pole dancing is a really great way to get in shape,” said veteran pole dancer Rebecca Runge. “I started a couple of years ago to do something for fitness, to get myself motivated to get in shape. I feel like it's a good way to express your self in a safe environment.”