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Experience, Training and Certification at Aradia Fitness Calgary

Aradia Fitness Calgary is dedicated to cultivating a team of highly trained instructors, committed to the safe, successful, and progressive instruction of our clients. Each instructor is passionate about learning and expanding their teaching skills – and we provide the best training possible. As the premiere Pole Fitness Studio in Calgary, we have set a high standard for anyone who earns a coveted spot on our team.

Aradia, as a whole, has developed a thoroughly researched and proven curriculum requiring a high level of knowledge to teach correctly. Candidates applying for the program must be an experienced pole dancer (or aerialist) before they can become one of our instructors. For example, all instructors on our roster had three or more years of experience before starting their training. We conduct training for a level over the course of a weekend. The candidate then completes an internship, practicing teaching alongside an experienced instructor before being tested on their knowledge. In addition, we designed our aerial program, introduced in February 2018, in conjunction with Circus Lab. Training from Circus lab was done with teachers who are also experienced Cirque du Soleil artists.

Demetra and I have been teaching pole and aerial for ten years. What drew me to Demetra, as both a fellow instructor and a business partner, is the similar philosophy we both held about instructing. We are continually learning techniques, movements and exercises. We do this through our travels to studios and gyms across North America, various teacher certification courses and online training. Not only does this increase our skills, but it also expands our teaching repertoire.

Over the past three years, we have put a lot of dedicated effort into cultivating a team (and family) of instructors with the same drive to learn and share knowledge and skills. (I may be a bit biased, but I’d say our team is the absolute greatest).

My students can attest to the multitude of odd and (unfortunately for them) helpful conditioning exercises and stretches I know. After ten years, I am still trying to expand my knowledge. I learn from Cirque du Soleil Artists, triathletes, extreme sports athletes, and travelling pole artists, to give a few examples.

Calisthenics and pole dancing on Miami Beach

Monika training (showing off?) with Calisthenics experts in Miami.

When we have the opportunity to host pole stars like Kira Noire and Evgeny Greshilov, I jump on the chance to learn from them. It’s not just because I can learn some cool tricks. It’s also because once I let them know I want to use some of my time to learn more teaching tips, I get so much more out of the session. We host a variety of pole stars and aerialists at our studio, each having their own unique style.

Jordan Kensley, a guest instructor at Aradia Fitness Calgary training Monika on twerking

Jordan Kensley working with Monika on twerking skills.

Just like the guests we host, all of the instructors at Aradia Fitness Calgary have their unique style and personality. This helps expose students to infinitely more options. It also shows them they can really make their pole and aerial practice their own.

I think one of the most important aspects of a great instructor is willingness to continue to learn and adapt. Anyone can learn how to give a standard explanation of a move. A genuinely dedicated instructor will adapt to their students, always be thinking and analyzing, feel the fire from discovering something new, and be looking for opportunities everywhere to learn and grow as a teacher.



Cirque du Soliel artist and gymnast Sascha Bachmann taught classes at Aradia in 2019.

Cirque du Soleil artist and gymnast Sascha Bachmann taught classes at Aradia in 2019.

Four (real) Reasons You’re Not Progressing

In every athletic and strength-based endeavour, it is possible to hit a plateau. The plateau is a decrease in the progress of your results from your regular training. Plateaus can happen at any point (in our case, in any level), multiple times, and for a multitude of reasons. Plateaus happen to everyone, but not everyone knows how to address them or put in a system to work through them. Here are four real reasons you’re not progressing and some tips on how to move through the block.

1. Foundations and Technique

Building solid foundations and taking the time to perfect technique from the beginning will make your practice better and keep you progressing consistently. If you’re feeling stuck, step back, see if there is anything you can do to improve technique and foundational movements. It’s very easy to get through certain things without proper technique. It does catch up with you eventually, though.

Training specific movements is one of the keys to bettering fluidity in pole, whether you are working on tricks or dance. It may feel repetitive, but something is never “perfect”, it only gets better. This means there is always room for improvement, and a great way to keep your practice moving forward is to practice and better the basics.

2. You avoid your weaknesses

A lot of people tend to avoid weaknesses and stick to what we are good at. This will also eventually catch up with you. If you’re bad at a cradle spin for example, and you don’t understand the technique of properly using your arms to perform a push-pull motion, you’ll be held back from some of the more advanced moves, that let’s be honest, everyone wants (Ayeshas anyone?). So, you will have to work on this weakness. If you are weak at a particular type of grip, work on that. Do some extra training for your arms if you find your upper body is weak. If your core is weak, spend more time on the ground and do your conditioning. Anything that feels difficult and impossible should not be avoided. You’ll get it if you work towards it.

Women in black two piece does handstand against a pole with stag legs

3. Your goals are not refined enough

Refining your goals and setting them properly will ensure you keep progressing. If you are only using your levels to track your progress, you are going to plateau. You are so focused on the level that you don’t see the fundamentals you need to build, and you may potentially skip over them. It is possible to only use strength, or flexibility to obtain moves to a certain point. In some cases, you can use improper engagement and perform the trick – but this leads to injury eventually. Set some measurable goals for your strength and flexibility. How many push-ups can you do? How long can you hold a hollow body position? Can you do a proper handstand? If you run out of endurance in class, do something more cardio-based like dancing, a circuit class, or dare I say it, go for a run.

4. Overtraining/Under Recovering

If you exceed your bodies ability to recover from strenuous work, performance can decrease. It can also happen from monotonous training where your body adapts to what you are doing and plateaus. Cross-training and adding some additional classes that get your body moving differently can really help. If your energy is low, you’re sore all the time, getting injured a lot, you need to rethink your regime. Do you need more downtime for your muscles to recover between intense or long training sessions/days? Are you sleeping and eating enough to keep up with the energy demands?

There are so many more details we could go into, especially for each individual. We all lead different lives, have different strengths and weaknesses, and have different goals. The important thing is to be aware when you’re struggling and keep taking care of yourself. Find what works for you outside of your classes to help you in your classes. Progressing is important – do it safely and in a well planned way so you and your body stay happy.


Train smarter to do harder things.


Benefits of Aradia Cardio Focused Classes

Continuing with our posts on the benefits of our various classes, today we will focus on two more of my favourites, Pole Circuit and POUND®! The classes are cardio based, but no running is required. These two classes are guaranteed to get your heart rate up and keep you entertained.

The number one thing I hear when students are going to perform or compete is “I’m having a tough time getting through this three-minute performance; I have to work on my cardio.” Pole Circuit and POUND® are built to help you increase your cardio.

Pole Circuit is a total body workout that uses interval training to get your heart rate going. Using exercises on and off the pole, we combine intense work with periods of rest to improve your endurance, burn fat, and build strength. Although it is a tough workout, every student feels accomplished after taking this class. If you take Pole Circuit often, you will see how much your endurance increases. Increasing cardio will give you an edge when training or even taking other classes. Pole circuit is a one of a kind class, and we highly recommend taking it if you haven’t tried it before.

Three POUNDfit trainers standing with ripstix crossed behind their backs

POUND® is not your typical cardio class; it is way more fun! POUND® is a full-cardio jam session with great music and choreography. You will burn between 400 and 800+ calories per hour without even noticing it. It is a go go go 45-minute class that makes you feel good while increasing your cardio quickly. An extra benefit is also how you get better and better at picking up choreography, and this will translate to those types of classes as well.  It is also a great way to get any frustrations out while you are drumming to the music and trust me, everyone needs that once in a while. Come join me for a class, you will love POUND®!


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