I’ve always had people ask me about how my pole journey started as well as why and how it has shaped my life. The answer is complicated but simple at the same time. So here’s my pole journey.
I was at a Stampede event in Calgary in 2007 where my sister introduced me to her friend from Vancouver. The Vancouverite was fit, confident and self assured. I wondered what her story was so I asked what she did in Vancouver. She talked about her career, her family and then mentioned her passion was pole fitness. She said she got bored doing the same thing over and over again in her fitness regiment and when she started doing pole, she was rejuvenated. I walked away from that conversation thinking, “Could I really do this?”. I played soccer, floor hockey and went to the gym the odd time. Growing up I was a tomboy. Talk about a 180 degree turn. Nonetheless, I had always wanted to feel more feminine, sexy and more confident as a woman so I signed up for a six week class at Aradia.
To be completely honest, I was terrified. I thought I would be the least coordinated in the class and all the rest of the negative internal dialogue we all think from time to time was going through my head. I built up the nerve to go to my first class. My instructor Jayna was really nice, cool and encouraging. What I didn’t expect was how quickly all the women bonded. We were supportive and had fun together. Although I was active prior to pole, I had very little strength in my upper body. I wondered how far I would be able to go. Jayna explained that the floor work trained the necessary muscles in each level to accomplish our pole spins and tricks. By the time we finished Level 1, I felt more confident, stronger and more comfortable in my skin.
I continued on, completing the next levels and sometimes having to take the same level twice when I felt I wasn’t quite there to move on to the next, but I kept at it. I had fallen in love with the way it made me feel. It was something I was doing for myself and it was my own personal adventure. When I reached level 5 my instructor Serena asked if I had thought about teaching. I told her at the time that my career as a sales manager was much too busy to take on instructing. Serena kept on me as she did in my classes. My common phrase was ‘I’ll never be able to do this spin/trick’ and she would respond ‘Yes you will just watch’. After about a year, I became an Aradia Fitness instructor. I went though rigorous training, written and practical exams as well as an internship for another 10 hours. It was worth it! I enjoyed teaching and passing on my knowledge to others that were on their journey. I continued my own training and became certified in all levels by 2012.

Fast forward to late 2013… The owner had decided to sell the Calgary studio in order to have someone local take it on. I mentioned to friends that I would be interested in buying the studio if I had a partner. Within a day I got a message from one of my master students that wanted to chat about it. In March 2014 we teamed up and bought Aradia Fitness Calgary. We worked all year to find the perfect spot for our vision. I have to say we are so happy with the studio, the design, the height of the poles and the instructors we have. It was a dream (that I didn’t realize I had) come true!!! I’m still teaching because I absolutely love it. It gives me great pride seeing my students accomplish their goals and being able to be a small part of their experience.
Now to answer the final question… How pole has shaped my life. At the age of 40, I am more self assured, confident, fit and happier than I have ever been. Pole fitness has had a lot to do with my wellbeing. I have met lifelong friends along the way. It makes me feel like the best version of me I can be. I love it and I know I always will. It is a huge part of my life and I wouldn’t have it any other way!