Interview with Sarah Scott from Studio 22
Posted: Nov 25 2011
With the UK Professional Pole Championship finals only 2 weeks away, we talk to one of the finalists Sarah Scott from Studio 22 to see how she is preparing for the finals and how she got into pole dancing.
1.You're a finalist in this year's UKPPC. How do you feel being a finalist and how will you be preparing for your performance?
I can't wait for the finals - this has been such a well organised and friendly competition. It was a tough semi final and the standard has been very high so I'm grateful for getting the opportunity to perform again. I've been training a few new tricks for the finals so I've been concentrating on those and I'm loving my theme, but you'll have to wait to and see what it is!
2. How and did you first get interested in pole dancing and what made you become an instructor/performer?
I went along to my local gym about 3 1/2 years ago with a friend who wanted someone to go with and I got completely and utterly hooked. The gym was too busy to allow any more classes so along with my instructor Amy Williams we decided to set up on our own studio. Teaching is my passion and I love seeing students progress and achieve their goals. Performing makes me think outside the box of my regular training and helps me push my limits. What ever I may be doing - as long as I'm on a pole im happy.
3. Tell us about your pole school Studio 22.
We recently had our 2 year anniversary which was fantastic. To set up a new business in the recession was scary, but the support and feedback has been great. We are situated in Taunton, Somerset and have a dance studio and separate pole studio above. We teach street dance, ballet fitness, freestyle fitness yoga, zumba and of course lots of pole. The students we get though our door vary hugely - with age range, fitness level and experience, but have a great sense of community, it's a lovely environment to work.
4.What is it about pole dancing that you enjoy the most?
The challenge - always something new to learn or how to improve on what you already know, its constantly changing and developing - like nothing else. And the pole dance community as a whole - so many inspiring and fun people, I love the pole events where everyone comes together, you can be from the other side of the country or a completely different country, but we all have pole in common that seems to bond us all together even if the rest of the world thinks we are a bit loopy.
5. What are your 3 favourite pole moves and why?
1) Phoenix - because it incorporates the reverse grap (another favourite) and involves flying round the pole - when you get it peachy it feels gooood!
2) Twisted grip - an old favourite - love the versatility of it
3) The russian hangback - I dont know the correct name for this but ive been doing this one a lot recently!
6.What are the main fitness benefits of pole dancing and how have pole dancing improved your fitness, strength or body shape?
Tick all of the boxes above! Pole dance has completely changed my body shape and I'm a lot stronger than I ever thought possible. When you can out chin up the boys at the gym - you know it's doing something right! Using your own body weight for training is such an effective way to exercise - and with pole you don't even realise your exercising because your dancing or hanging upside down with one leg!
7.Pole performers are athletes like in any other sport. What is an average day's training for you?
I've recently started back in the gym after about 2 years as I was teaching all the time, but my body has got used to it so I need to switch is up a bit. I get this done first thing in the morning for about an a hour and half, mixing steady low impact cardio with sprints and strength work, then I'll try and fit some training in during the day for a couple of hours a few times a week and then teach in the evenings. I would like to train a lot more but at the moment its very busy - cant complain!
8.What pole performers do you admire or inspire you?
I think Marlo Fiskin is a fantastic all- rounder, showing you can be very strong and flexible at the same time. I love her control and musicality; and Zoraya for being super human with her strength and always looking so god damn fierce. There are so many diverse and unique dancers out there you can pull inspiration from almost anywhere - from different dance forms and training in different disciplines like Yoga.
9. If someone has never tried pole dancing before how to they get started? (
It used to be so limited, but now there are so many ways. There are some great DVD's out for when you are at home - Pole Motion is great for beginners and an X Pole for anyone wanting to train at home. Seek out a qualified instructor at an accredited Pole Studio, It's very supportive, friendly and very social! 1-2-1 training is also a great way to progress as the instructors will go at your pace and tailor the class to you. If you can get to one, I really recommend attending a masterclass with one of the top dancers that have been over. We've been so lucky in the UK as it seems to be a must for everyone on tour. Karol Helms was awesome when she was last over so snap up hers quick!
10. What's next for you in the coming year?
Hopefully a very busy year! I recently featured in the Fit Gear show on Fitness TV with Justine McLucas and Karen Currie which will be aired in December. I'll also be at the Clothes Show in Birmingham performing on the X Pole stand and of course at the UKPPC finals. I'm also doing a nutrition qualification and starting personal training, along side teaching, performing and hopefully some more exciting things in the pipeline.
To find out more about Sarah and Studio 22 log onto her website www.studio22dance.com