2 comments / Posted on by Liz Rowe

We all have one thing in our life we have tried more times than fish & chips, that we just cannot do
Active Cherry studio, Eastbourne
As I finished the warm-up in my second class at Active Cherry, I felt excited and hopeful that my lack of confidence and awkward pole skills may just dissipate a little more this week. I beamed away at my teacher Andi, feeling my inner badass building with every stretch. I got this, I was telling myself. It's all good.
Stretching warm-up with our blue dragon skin leggings - http://bit.ly/DragonLeggings
It wasn't long before my 'I got this' turned from a statement into a question, as I was paired with two confident and friendly women who wouldn't hear me say 'I can't do it!'. 'Yes you can, don't be stupid! We can't do it. But we do.' And they did. I could feel my anxiety forming a little lump in my throat, a little flutter of panic in my chest. I started questioning again if I was cut out for this, but there was a reason I signed up for the advanced class, because I needed this push. I needed to surround myself with beautiful people like these two girls, who tell me that I will be completing the moves set in class today, and I will not be sitting them out.
Andi started us with a climb into a spin descent. Follow by a genie into an extended leg move. Due to their impeccable spotting and support, one of the girls stood forward to manipulate me into this move. 'Hold this leg here with this hand, stretch that other leg out!' Just as well she was tapping all the parts of my body that were supposed to be linking up with the other parts, as I was struggling to engage brain with legs/arms/hands, and my panic was starting to overtake my sense.
One of my pole buddies supporting me into one of the moves of the lesson
The refreshing and most notable part of this pole school is the unwavering patience and encouragement from the teacher and students. We all have weeks where our heart is there but our minds are taking a temporary vacation, and we're left with an overtired and frustrated mismatch of awkward moves and unnecessary body burns from clumsy dismounts and lazy inverts. As we changed from move to move, I once again found myself losing my time in this small room full of positivity, happy vibes and copious splashes of Dry Hands. 
A genie extended into this pretty little move
Then it came to 'that moment'. The moment that triggered every alarm bell in my brain, my arms, my stomach, my legs. 
'We're going to work on our Jade now!'
Andi, girl, I liked you. I was really digging your teaching. You're smart, you're bouncy, you make me feel a better person for an hour a week. But right now, you're off the Christmas card list. In fact, at this very point I was eyeing up my gym bag, wondering if they'd notice me creep over and surreptitiously dismiss myself from Week 2 of classes. 
One of my two pole buddies was up on the pole quicker than a flash, her transitions into the move graceful and concentrated, her end result flawless and impressive. The next pole buddy did the same. These girls, and I will be honest, they hid nothing. If they struggled, they moaned. If they hurt, they swore. If they couldn't do it, they'd keep going until they did it. And that rule applied to me too. 
Andi was called over after I muttered the words 'I can't do that move.' (Don't get me wrong; my previous pole teacher had tried and tried with me, but I'm surprised she didn't beat me with the cleaning towel I was that awful.) Right now? Oh, I was doing this move. 'She makes everyone do Jade,' my pole buddy whispered. 'It's her thing.' Well it ain't mine, my body was screaming. Hell to the no, this wasn't happening. I started to grow with confidence that I would prove these girls wrong, I will be her arch enemy, I'll be that one exception and ruin her reputation.
With gentle coercion - 'tilt those hips, lift yourself up and forward, hand here,' - it started to make sense. 'Arm here, hold onto that leg.' As gentle and calming as a yoga lesson, I felt myself start to resemble Stretch Armstrong. One leg was over my head; the other was somewhere the other side. I was starting to feel a little angry that she may prove me wrong, as she continued to push me to get those legs down. 'Breathe, deep breathing!' And there it was. My first Jade. Dammit. I'd done it.
What a mess. But it'll get better! Andi (now known as the Pole Witch for her magical ways) helping me with my first proper Jade.
After class was over (which was the one and only moment of the session that I was genuinely disappointed), my new pole buddies continued to chat to me about how wonderful this class is. How helpful and encouraging every member at Active Cherry is, how fantastic Andi is. I've yet to hear one bad word - there must be something. 'There's no bitching, no snideness, no looking down on others here.' Very true. Not once when I've been on the floor has there not been a hand there to help me up. And not once when I've been upside down has there not been a hand under my back to keep me up.
I now have three new friends on my Facebook account; photos flying everywhere from the evening, lovehearts and thank-yous and smiling emojis. Turns out you don't just get friction burn from this place, you get friends too.
Teacher Andi giving one of my pole buddies a huge hug after she completed a perfect Jade. The encouragement and friendship in this class is infectious.
The walls are covered in beautiful and encouraging quotes and photos
Continue to follow my pole adventures here, every Friday!
Until next week,
For my second pole lesson, I was wearing the
Origins coral string crop top - Click Here
dragon skin blue leggings - Click Here
Grab 10% off our Pole Collection (check it out here!) using code POLE10 - enjoy!


  • Posted on by Tanya Gatenby

    Such beautiful words. I’ve met Andi at one of her masterclasses a couple of months ago and felt her passionate way of teaching first hand. She is strong, encouraging and down to earth teacher. Very friendly atmosphere in the studio and her Cherries ? are amazed by and welcoming too. Andi is coming to our neck of the wood in a few weeks and I can’t wait. Excited!!! xxx

  • Posted on by Seskin Kelly

    Great writeup and welcome to “Andi magic” ??

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