Interview with Aimee Lawson from Northern Pole Dance

Posted: Mar 28 2012

It's the UK Pole Showcase in Newcastle this weekend and we talk to founder Aimee Lawson from Northern Pole Dance to find out more...

1.Tell us more about the your pole showcase event? How and why did you start the event.
UK Pole Showcase was formed as soon as I learnt of the sad decision not to run pole unity in 2011, northern pole dance took part in 2010 and hoped to do so again in 2011.... It was the perfect place for me to actually decide to perform again after having my daughter in 2009.... I'd considered giving up pole altogether after finding it hard to get back into after that... I decided that the UK needed a non-competitive environment to allow people from pole schools the chance to perform. There are so many competitions but I know that there are many many schools who don't get involved in the competitive side of pole.... This showcase is a brilliant place for all schools to come together and do what they love doing in front of a supportive audience :)

2.What’s it all about this year? Where will it all take place, who’s taking part and what can we expect to see?
The Showcase is being held at 'The Peoples Theatre' in Newcastle upon Tyne on Sunday 1st April. Geographically Newcastle is in a great place to allow schools from all corners of the UK the chance to come together, lots of events take place in the south which often means Scottish and Northern England schools often chose not to take part due to the travel costs involved... As expected lots of schools signed up to take part, but for varying reasons a few have fallen along the wayside, however, we've got 16 schools taking part out of the 28 that applied with performances from Glasgow Uni, JLN, BodyBarre, Northumbria Uni, StaceyPole, PoleFit, X-Stacia Pole Fitness, Cumbria Pole Art and The PoleGems to name a few!! A full list of performers can be found on the UK Showcase website There are many wild and wonderful themes from Pirates to Spooky to Black Swan, there's sure to be a performance to suit everyone's tastes! 

3.How and did you first get interested in pole dancing and what made you become an instructor/performer?
I first took a Pole Class back in 2006, in those days it was still very hush hush and hard to come by in Newcastle, there was only one company providing classes which were held in a gentlemans club and taught by a stunning 20 foot tall beautiful long leggy dancer! I got so drunk (due to being so nervous) at my first class that I fell asleep in a cheeseburger on the way home!!! But my friend and I persevered with it and went on to really love it! 

I began teaching hen-parties for that company in 2007 (basically to fund my spiralling wedding costs!) and opened Northern Pole Dance in 2008.  I take much more of a backseat role these days, for the simple fact that I am just not at a good enough standard to teach the advanced levels these days! The Northern Pole Dance instructors can defy gravity that I only aspire I reach nowadays.  I have very little time to train and it would be wrong of me to think my standard would be high enough for the modern pole world!!!!

4.What is it about pole dancing that you enjoy the most?
I love love LOVE to see the progression people make, I find their enthusiasm spurs me on to create a better place for them to train with us and provide the best school I can for each and every one - maybe the sun is now getting to me!!!! Time for a swim! ;D 

5.What are your 3 favourite pole moves and why? 
1) Butterfly because it looks really impressive and is actually really achievable for everyone!
2) Handspring because it took me SO long to be able to do!
3) Jade split because I’ve only managed it twice and no-one got a picture!!!!

6.What are the main fitness benefits of pole dancing and how have pole dancing improved your fitness, strength or body shape?
Pole dancing has really changed my life (corney I know!) but since getting involved with pole dance I have pretty much changed my entire career to join the fitness world! I have developed muscles, become pretty damn flexible and I really enjoy keeping fit which is something that wouldn’t have ever happened if I hadn’t started Pole Dance!

7.What’s your favourite move for strength training on the pole?
Its too hard to choose! I enjoy all kinds of training

8.What pole performers do you admire or inspire you?
Felix Cane was one of my biggest inspirations and we were lucky enough to host her for a Masterclass at Northern Pole Dance last year, it kick-started my flexibility training and it was a refreshing change to see someone as amazing as her finish a massive plate of pub-grub and drink real ale!!!! I also love to watch Jenyne Butterfly and Elena Gibson, every time I watch a performance of theirs I fall in love a little bit more…. I think I may start developing little girl-crushes one of these days ;)

9.If someone has never tried pole dancing before how would you advise them they to get started?
I’d recommend everyone to go along to a Pole Class, its not just about safety it’s a social thing, I’ve made some of my best friends ever through pole classes, although there’s no reason not to pole at home its absolutely brilliant to pole with friends.

10.What’s next for you in the coming year?
We’ve got so much going on at Northern Pole Dance this year! Our very own studio opens in Newcastle in about a week or so which is super super exciting, we’re very busy decorating at the moment which is hard work to fit in around all of the showcase work! But it’ll be so worth it to see it finished. The we’ve got out Northern Pole Princess Competition in July, it’s the 4th year of the comp and we’ve got international entries this year for the first time! Tickets are flying out of the door for that and I’m worried I may need to find a bigger venue!!! I’m also super excited to have Anastasia and Evgeny at Northern Pole Dance in May. I’ve got a few judging appointments book already this year as well as teaching Flexibility masterclasses around the UK – its going to be a very busy year for me and for Northern Pole Dance.

Find out more about the UK Pole Showcase here

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