Every month at Aradia fitness Calgary, we celebrate one of our most dedicated and delightful students. Our Student Spotlight for February, 2018 is Belu Perez. She represents our pole community of positive, supportive, and wonderful people. She has shown outstanding progress, commitment to her pole journey, and is a joy to have in class. We have had the pleasure of watching Belu grow into a proud pole athlete. Keep going, Belu, we are so grateful to have you in our Aradia Family!
1. Where are you from? Hometown?
I was born in Queretaro, Mexico.
2. Favourite pastime (outside of pole)?
I love doing yoga and Latin dancing.
3. What do you love most about pole?
Its super fun and also really good for building strength and flexibility. And it makes you feel good about yourself.
4. What keeps you motivated to come to your pole classes consistently?
Every time I go to class I feel like i learn something new and I become better and better. Also it feels awesome when you finally get a move you have been working on for a while.
5. What surprised you about pole dance and fitness?
I didn’t expect there to be so many moves! You never stop learning new things.
6. Why should someone join Aradia Fitness Calgary and start pole today?
Everyone at Aradia is super nice and friendly! All the instructors are so encouraging and they know so much. You will always be learning new things! Classes are always fun and its just a very nice environment!
While listening to a sportscaster talk about how a hockey player, 10 years into his career seemed to have lost his love of the game, I started thinking about this in relation to pole. I still love pole but I do see some major differences in it since my humble beginnings. Believe it or not, back in 2007 when I started as a student, Instagram did not exist! There was no comparing myself to another pole dancer half way across the world and wondering if I would ever be that good or how many hours I would need to train to get there. It was a simpler time and it really kept you focused on your own development. It was a blessing of sorts as it kept me working on proper technique and not just doing something once and moving on to the next big trick. The pole climate feels very different from those days but there are some benefits to it as well such as a larger community and more and more friends around the world that you connect with.
“I’ve got to take flexibility, gymnastics, dance and 6 or more pole classes to keep up!”
“I’m not progressing fast enough to continue on with classes”
“I’ll never be able to compete or be as good as I want to be”
Any of these sound like something you’ve said to yourself? We’ve all been there and felt that way at some point. Are you getting discouraged or are you losing balance in your life? When I started, the only measuring stick I had were my friends in class. It was pretty great given that we all had our different strengths and we all excelled at different things. I believe our class environment still feels that way… we all cheer each other on, we are excited for one another but what happens when we see a competition or a crazy trick on Instagram? Do we start feeling bad about where we are in pole or are we still proud of our achievements?
When I got back after almost 2 months off this year, I had those feelings of insecurity as my strength had diminished and I felt bad about where I was at. At Pole Expo, I struggled to keep up at workshops where previously, I would have rocked it. I got back from Vegas feeling a bit down on myself. I over did it trying to keep up and I could barely lift my carry on luggage into the overhead bin. I had those feelings of “why bother” but I decided to dust myself off and I called Erica a few weeks later. I talked about getting back to loving pole so we decided to meet up, just play and do a poleflow from Magnus Labbe that I had learned in his workshop over a month before. We spent a Sunday hanging out, laughing and just having a good time. We learned the flow in about 40 minutes and stayed for another hour taking videos of us doing it in tandem. It became FUN again and I had an epiphany. I had lost the fun in it all. I forgot about laughing until I cried when I fell out of a move, enjoying just learning and not taking myself so seriously.
Pole should help self confidence and self esteem. If it is developing insecurities, you need a reset and remember the love. Pole should make you happy and be FUN. It did when you started and you can get back there trust me! We support you in your journey and anything we can do to help, just know we are there for you!!
Every month we feature an Aradia Fitness Calgary student who we feel embodies our community of positive, supportive, powerful and fabulous women! For the month of June we are featuring Robin! She is so inspiring in class, works super hard and we all love her strength and energy! She loves rock climbing and so of course climbing or inverting a pole is no problem for this amazing woman! She is at the studio 3 to 4 times per week and we can barely keep up with her! In fact, she sometimes finishes class and goes hiking after! A truly inspiring person and we just love love love that she is part of our pole community!
Our student spotlight for June, 2017, Robin in an inverted crucifix. Great work, Robin!
Guelph, Ontario. Moved to Calgary in 2001.
Favourite Pastime (outside of pole):
My weekends are devoted to the mountains – either scrambling, hiking, skiing, rock or ice climbing. Walking my dogs along the river in the afternoon is one of my all time favourite quiet moments during the week.
What do you love most about pole?
I love a few things. I love being challenged both mentally and physically – which is every class! The group I get to spend time with are beyond amazing in their talent and encouragement. I love how each of the instructors are unique in their approach and teaching style and great at pushing me outside of my comfort zone. Also, I love how pole has opened a feminine side to my tomboy nature that is both wonderful and terrifying. Terrifying in the sense I had no idea it existed, but also amazed at how much I am enjoying feeling and embracing it.
What keeps you motivated to come to classes consistently?
I have set goals my whole life both in my career and personal life. Last fall, I met one of Aradia’s co-owners/instructors and I was amazed at her physical strength. I was short a fitness goal for 2017, so decided I would try my hardest to see how far I could go in one year and perform an amateur choreographed performance by the end of 2017. I am determined to give it my best shot, so very motivated to be at the studio as much as I can. But I don’t just go because of the goal now, I keep going to class more for the physical and mental challenges, and great personal interactions in supportive environment.
What surprised you about pole dance and fitness?
It’s bloody hard!! The physical demand was no surprise, but the extent of how the moves demanded mental coordination, physical strength and endurance was a surprise for sure, especially as I may be a little older than the average student. I have never been more bruised, or proud of having so many bruises; my badges of honour for hard work. I was also surprised at how much fun I would actually have. It can’t be stressed enough, each class is a giggle fest or full of high fives.
What should someone join Aradia Fitness Calgary and start pole today?
I think people should try pole if they are looking for a different physical activity versus just going to ‘the gym for a workout’. This program and these classes will kick your ass and get you in shape in a way you never could have imagined. It is hard work and deserves some serious respect. But it is more than just physical – it is a mind and body experience that I believe everyone should at least try. People should choose Aradia because it is honestly the most welcoming place I have experienced. From the group of people you’re on this journey with to the instructors who are guiding you on it. Each class is different, fun and challenging. I usually leave a sweaty mess with a huge smile on my face, and I could not be happier for this experience.