The Pole Project Dance Studio in Cape Town

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The Pole Project Dance Studio in Cape Town

The hot school proving that pole dancing has serious fitness perks

Last Updated: 21 December 2016

Forget the stripper stereotype, pole dancing is fast gaining real respect in the sports and fitness world, and The Pole Project Cape Town Studio is proof of the exercise form’s vertical climb on local soil.

Far from a seedy underground haunt, the first-floor “aerial arts playground”, as owner Kathy Lee refers to it, channels a slick urban feel – imagine exposed brick walls, a high industrial ceiling, light wood flooring and plenty of glass – and is set on showing individuals from all walks of life that pole dance is about so much more than just sexy spins and erotic inverts.

“It’s a beautiful melange of circus, gymnastic and dance elements, all woven together into a captivating art form,” explains Kathy, who worked for several years as a lawyer in London, but fell in love with the athleticism and artistry associated with this sport.

The East City-based studio offers a number of different lessons, but one of the key classes students can take is a fitness- and performing arts-focused session that aims to build core strength, improve balance and flexibility and, as Kathy says, “tone every muscle in the body, even those you never knew you had”. Not to mention, because dancers learn to put all the tricks and spins into a fluid routine, these lessons, which are suitable for both men and women, are a great outlet for creativity and a fulfilling form of self-expression.

Though, for those that are eager to embrace the sensual side of pole work, there is also a slightly more steamy exotic class that helps women to explore their own sexuality, build confidence and improve self-image (stilettos are welcome).

So essentially, anyone from clueless beginners to advanced professionals can get whatever they want out of the lessons, be their aim to get in shape, to find their inner vixen or to simply be part of an exciting growing community.       

In fact, community is actually an important part of The Pole Project’s philosophy, and so, every second month, the studio hosts a ‘Pole-nut Butter and Jam’ session, which calls on students to invite friends and family to come watch them perform tricks, freestyle and play around the poles. Plus, learners can also relax and connect with fellow dancers in the venue’s chill-out zone whenever they wish.

Though, in as much as the studio is all about encouraging a sense of belonging and togetherness, it’s also very focused on the individual. So, every student gets their own pole (classes are kept to a maximum of 16 people to ensure this), receives one-on-one attention and is given freedom to progress at their own pace.

After all, pole dancing at this professional school is meant to be a personally rewarding experience and a whole lot of good, clean fun, all strip club connotations aside.

Tip: Anyone who’s eager to test out the studio can attend one FREE trial class before signing up – just be sure to email in advance to book your slot. Also, if you’re hosting a hen party, or any other event for that matter, you can consider using the studio as a venue or making use of the entertainment services of The Pole Project’s performers.

The Bill: Prices vary depending on the specific contract students opt for, but generally, the more classes you attend and the longer you sign up for in advance, the cheaper the lessons are. It’s also possible to go for the Pay-As-You-Pole package, which includes 10 classes for R1100 or 5 classes for R550.

Opening Hours: Monday – Thursday: 9:30am – 12pm and 5pm – 9pm; Saturday: 9am – 12:30pm
Note: Each class is between an hour and an hour and a half long; on Tuesday and Thursday mornings, there’s a Mums and Bubs class for mothers who want to learn to pole dance while their little ones frolic safely in a corner playpen.

First Floor | 117 Roeland Street | East City | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 461 0215


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