Monday, 13 July 2015

Pole Pioneer, Kay Penney UK interviewed by Alma Pirner - Hungary - July 2015

How and when did you start Pole Passion as a business?

I started to lay the foundations of Pole Passion in 2001 in the UK, there were only a handful of people exploring pole dance and pole fitness.  It was soon after my third child was born. I started pole dancing as a hobby wanting to get fit again after the birth of my son, I was in search of something more exciting than the gym and more challenging than my normal routines of fitness. Pole Parties became popular in 2003 As my popularity grew so came Pole Fitness in 2006 Pole Fitness Instructor training was developed in 2008.  Miss Pole Dance was created in 2005 and World Pole Sport & Fitness - World Pole Dance in 2009

What was the biggest challenge?

Changing public perception. I identified quite quickly with the right marketing, education and professionalism, pole fitness could be accepted by the masses by staying focused with so many ideas buzzing around – It was hard to keep focused and following through with one idea before moving on to the next. This new exercise and dance was addictive, challenging, exciting and for me pioneering it in the UK was so much fun

What do you feel the biggest success in this business?

Love and connection from so many people now around the world all sharing the same ideas and love, passion and enthused with the passion around the pole – I have made the biggest family I could ever wish for and providing a worlds stage was my biggest ambition – a platform where the performer would not be judged wrongly, where they would receive the credibility and recognition they deserve in a professional environment

Why it's so popular all around the World, what do you think?

Because pole, no matter how it is portrayed, fulfils so many desires and connects people in such a positive way
The love of challenge, variety and contribution
Growth and significance all positive human needs

Tell me the story of Pole Passion and World Pole dance?

It slowly happened over time encourage by my husband Steve as he saw my potential as a leader of like minded people
I was passionate to make a difference to peoples lives, I wasnt sure how i was going to do this but Steve saw my strength and leadership more than I ever did.
Pole Passion grew from a personal hobby encouraged by my close friends, from close friends, who told their friends, who told their friends I soon became well known. I got so busy I had to take on instructors to help with the demand for my lessons. I then became quite ill (cancer in fact) for me this was the turning point, not actually knowing if I would be alive in 6 months I decided to document all my teachings.

 I started to name my moves and document my lesson plans. 18 months later I became well always striving for that next move, whilst actually being incredibly poorly – pole kept me alive and focused me in a positive manner
In 2005 I had created a national championships, Miss Pole Dance UK, for me this was about educating the masses and the champions were urging me to create the next level for them after a few years waiting, I decided to create the first World championships, not actually knowing who in the world would attend !!  or even if I had the time to plan it  - It was all a gamble but it paid off, the market was bigger than I really believed at the time

What does pole dancing mean in your life?

It has become my life
It's what I wake up for
It's what I fall asleep thinking about every night
The people I connect with and the places I visit all have a connection to the pole
I now can’t see a life without the pole

Who’s are the greatest and most prominent pole dancers in the World who did most for this business's popularity?

There are so many and each person who I have met along the way has each contributed to the growth of the industry in their own special way
From Sheila Kelly to Fawnia Dietritch, my two training  inspirations in early 2000 to the pioneers in each country I have the privilege in teaching and sharing knowledge with
Pantera USA 2006,
Alma Pirner Budapest 2008,
Anastaisia  Russia, 2009
Keem Martinez  2009 Mr Pole Fitness, France ,
Elena Shishkova Russia 2009,
Jeneyne Butterfly USA 2009,
Felix Cane Australia 2009,
Alesica Vazmitsel UK/ Belarus 2009, to more recent individuals of Nadia from Romania
All the contestant of the first world championships for sport and fitness dance and art to the present day competitors who are the continuing future of our industry

What's the difference between pole dance and pole fitness/pole sport?

For me there are very clear differences
In Pole Passion we all start with the pole fitness – this is a relatively new sport, and exercise programme, only being created in the UK in 2006 – as a series of moves, tricks, spins, poses and transitions, a workout on and around the pole, incorporating floor work, stretch, flexibility, core work outs, conditioning moves for fun and fitness – In Pole Passion we have also  created a grading system whereby students and instructors can reach certain levels of expertise by the way of an assessment process

Pole Dance – is a series of set choreography moves, set to music to create a pole show enabling the performer to express themselves through movements on and around the pole, being free to tell their story

And finally comes the Pole Sport – a series of gymnastic, and athletic moves and set sequences including routines and combinations with a more ridged formulae to technique

What do you think pole dancing is so seductive for men?
I believe pole dancing is seductive for both men and women who appreciate the beautiful form of a woman’s and man’s body, demonstrating the athleticism and wonders of the human body can achieve, defying gravity creating shapes in such a mesmerising and super human way. For me pole dancing incorporates strength inside and out as it is much harder to achieve than it looks
my motto being empowerment confidence fitness & FUN!

How do you see pole dancing in the future?

I see the pole dancing spreading everywhere, from gym to gym to park to beach from village hall to the front room – pole dancing is an activity that has no boundaries or prejudices, discriminations to age, gender or physical ability
I have witnessed the blind and deaf, the young the old, the disabled and the ill move beautifully and creatively around the pole – for me there are no boundaries for the pole –– we have taken it to the highest mountain in the UK, we have taken the pole in the sea, we have taken it to beaches parks and roads -  let’s not stifle the creativity and possibilities of pole

Do you think it's just a fashion, or it will last longer?

For me a fashion is something that only has a season or two – Pole has been around for me for 15 years therefore no this is not a fashion I believe we are still learning and developing the industry and there is so much more to come

Tell me more about the UK pole dancers, and people's opinion about?

Over the years the barriers are changing, initially 30 year old women, age bracket was only interested in pole then suddenly 5 years later the 20 years were interested, now all ages, young and old, men and women are interested. The media has helped, the facebook community has helped to educate the na├»ve – people opinions are changing for the positive and will continue to do so. The level of professionalism has increased and education has progressed and I believe we still have exciting times ahead

Kay Penney – Pole Passion Ltd | Miss Pole Dance UK | World Pole Sport & fitness Championships |
Pole Pioneer UK

Pole Passion Fitness, at Nuffield Health Fitness & Wellbeing Centre in Chichester August 2015

Pole Fitness, industry experts Pole Passion are all set to start their classes run by Karla McCarthy, advanced instructor, at Pole Passion Chichester starting classes in August 2015 at
Chichester Nuffield Health Fitness & Wellbeing Centre,

Karla's Qualifications:
Advanced level 3 Pole Passion qualified
First Aid Certified
Fully insured

Apprentice Kelly's Qualifications:
Working towards Foundation Instructor training

No of poles:
4 x RPoles Portable Free Standing Pole

Suitable: Beginner / Intermediate / Advanced
All levels of fitness - beginners welcome to join any time.

Cost: £12.50 per lesson. First lesson is £10.
Block booking: 4 classes for £40 (equivalent to £10 per class)

Register: To register your interest please text   07900 582 582 or
email karla.mccarthy@passion-fitness. com

What To Wear: Shorts or leggings, T shirt or vest top, trainers or bare feet.
Avoid wearing jewellery, moisturisers or oils on the skin.

Where and when:
Thursday 8pm - 9pm Mixed ability
Friday 8pm - 9pm Mixed ability
Sunday 3pm - 4pm Mixed ability

Venue Address
Chichester Fitness and Wellbeing Gym,
Chichester Gate, (Off Stockbridge Road),
PO19 8EL

for more details or other classes please visit

Pole Passion Personal Development Business Plans for Pole Fitness

We understand that to be A successful POLE INSTRUCTOR is not as simple as just attending a training course as it’s only those who are committed and put the effort in, are the ones to get the results of a successful and thriving business
Outlined below are the areas Pole Passion can further support you:

1-2-1 Coaching
Creating a Personal Development Plan bespoke for you
Providing supervision and feedback whilst you teach a class.  We will support you with 'what if' scenarios which will further prepare you for teaching
12 x 30 minute 1-2-1 mentoring sessions consisting either face to face or Skype to assist your growth and keep you focused. Included in the coaching will be homework, study / research and goal setting will be set.

Fast Track Training Including 1-2-1 Coaching

Personal 1-2-1 or Small Group Instructor Training.
Includes Foundation and Advanced Instructor Training Courses.
Teach a Class under supervision for feedback to cover 'what if' scenarios to prepare you for teaching

Items Covered
Vision for your business
Proposed income and expenditure
KPI’s – knowing your numbers!
Advice on taking on an apprentice to support you
Choosing a venue
Advertising your venue
Do’s and don’ts
Pole Equipment - what’s right for you and your students
Music licensing
Adequate Insurance
Health & Safety
Risk Assessment
Code Of Pole Practice – professionalism
Continual Professional Development – ongoing development and opportunities
Exploring methods specific to pole fitness and burlesque classes
Class structure and lesson planning
Be prepared for all eventualities
Continual Motivation
Support for you and your students

Agree a clear objective for you and your business.
Strategy and Personal Development
Defining a plan for support and development
Improve self-confidence
Improve problem-solving skills
Professional ongoing support and development

Pole Passion even offer a low cost license to support you if you want to work under our name and Brand, but this isn't compulsory. You must also attend our Accredited Pole Instructor Training group courses in person (see our diary page for dates) or we can arrange Private VIP training on a 1-2-1 or small group basis.


CPD (continual learning & development) run every month.
Strategy and Personal Development
Personal Development Plan bespoke for you
Ideally you will attain REP's (register of exercise professionals) Accreditation OR
As a minimum, complete our course on Anatomy & Physiology (equivalent to 6 REP points)
Teach a Class under supervision for feedback to cover many 'what if' scenarios to prepare you for teaching on your own.

To speak to someone about mentoring and how it can help you succeed, please contact us using either of the following methods:

Email: theteam, or
Tel: 01293 888200 - Monday to Friday

Foundation Pole Teacher Training - £399.00
Advanced Pole Teacher Training - £399.00
First Aid Pole Sport Specific - valid for 3 years - £90.00 (offered annually)
Burlesque teacher training ONE day for fitness - £160.00
Burlesque Teacher Training THREE DAY TRAINING - £599.00
(for Parties / workshops / lessons / performances)

1-2-1 Coaching consisting 12 x 30 minute coaching sessions via Skype - £1,500.00*
*Discounted to £1,200.00 if taken with 2 or more of our courses.

Note: 1-2-1 Coaching is only effective for individuals and not suitable for groups
Included in the coaching will be homework, study / research and goal setting will be set.

Small Group Training Including 1-2-1 Coaching - £4,500.00* (£5,052.00 Value! SAVE £552.00!)
Ideal for small teams of dedicated instructors - Includes
Foundation Pole Teacher Training - £399.00 for up to 4 people
Advanced Pole Teacher Training - £399.00 for up to 4 people
First Aid Pole Sport Specific - valid for 3 years - £90.00 (offered annually) for up to 4 people
1-2-1 Coaching consisting 12 x 30 minute coaching sessions via Skype - £1,500.00
All training is assumed at our UK venue and on set diary dates - click here for dates available
All training and coaching MUST be taken within 12 months
1-2-1 Coaching is only effective for individuals and not suitable for groups

FAST TRACK TRAINING Including 1-2-1 Coaching - £6000.00* (£6,828.00 Value! SAVE £828.00)
Ideal for small teams of dedicated instructors - Includes
Foundation Pole Teacher Training - £399.00 for up to 6 people
Advanced Pole Teacher Training - £399.00 for up to 6 people
First Aid Pole Sport Specific - valid for 3 years - £90.00 (offered annually) for up to 6 people
1-2-1 Coaching consisting 12 x 30 minute coaching sessions via Skype - £1,500.00
All training is assumed at our UK venue and dates to suit you - This is bespoke personalised training for you!
All training and coaching MUST be taken within 12 months
First Aid training is only available on set diary dates at our chosen venue
Training at your UK studio is extra 15% to cover travel / accommodation for assessors and trainers with extra student places added at £460per person per course up to a max 12 students with min 1 pole per 4 students and venue / studio time supplied free of charge to us.
1-2-1 Coaching is only effective for individuals and not suitable for groups

Prices subject to change - correct as of August 2015 until August 2016

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Pole Dancer, Pole Dance, Pole Fitness, Pole Sport - what's the difference?

So I asked a few people in the Pole Industry
What is the difference to you, between Pole Fitness, Pole Dance & Pole Sport

BECKY MacPherson – PolePassion Oxted

Pole Fitness- I see pole fitness as a series of spins, tricks and transitions on and around the pole to build strength, co-ordination, flexibility and balance.

Pole Dance - Pole dance to me is about linking all the moves fluidly in a routine, incorporating more poses and floor work and done to music. Pole dance can be done to any type off music and incorporate other styles of dance, Pole dance is very individual and a great way of expressing your emotions.

Pole Sport - I've never really thought what pole sport means to me. I'd say it's more the competitive side of pole, individuals train to compete rather than as a hobby/fitness.

KARLA McCarthy – Pole Passion Chichester

For me pole dance is more about the artistry of pole. Dance styles around the pole maybe incorporating more flow than tricks.
Pole fitness is about learning something more gymnastic based and pole sport is the competitive edge of pole.
People who compete for titles do pole sport for example. However, I do consider pole fitness a sport too just not done at a competitive level.
It is accessible to all.

LUIS John – Pole Passion Brighton

I believe the difference between pole sport, pole dancing and pole fitness is the way in which I may relay my interest to another person to buffer for any stigmatism that may unfortunately still be attached to everything pole.

Of course, pole is becoming a lot more widely accepted now thanks to the likes of strong individuals setting pace and media platforms showcasing their amazing talents. But, we all still carry some hesitant back foot, get out of jail card excuse when someone asks why pole?!
Yes, to get fit, to increase self confidence and well being and of course for the fun factor!
I do it because I can! Being a young heterosexual male I wouldn't describe my interest as pole dancing but pole fitness because I don't appreciate the remarks I get when ill-educated people, jump on the same stereotypical train that's been doing it's rounds for years and will continuously do so for many more.
A recent picture seen on one of my social media sites sparked a colleague of mine to make a remark not so long ago.
This colleague is a gym going, masculine man carrying out a job which requires him to be intimidating and forceful, which he does very well. When referring to a recent picture of mine in a shoulder mount he asks questions along the lines of... "Are you gay?" "Isn't that for girls?" "Why would you?"...
I simply answered
 "because I CAN"

Who cares what sexuality you are?!
What you do for a living?!
Who cares what anyone else thinks?!
Pole doesn't!

Nadia – Romania

For me pole fitness must come first – learning the tricks and moves then must follow the dance
Pole Dance a set of moves tricks spins all set to music to create a performance then if the student wishes they can then compete in the pole sport
For me the pole dance is more artistic and a way to express yourself and tell your story with the help of the music.

Pole Fitness – moves, tricks, spins, transitions, poses incorporating floor work stretch flexibility coordination balance poise grace beauty, confidence empowerment fitness and fun

Pole Dance is all the above incorporating cardio vascular and aerobic sequences, set to music to create a choreographed well-rehearsed routine and is usually done in front of an audience

Pole Sport –is a competitive genre of pole dance, usually with strict rules and regulations attached to it. Pole sport can be demonstrated in many ways depending on the rules of the event

Pole Dance, Fitness and Sport all originated from the exotic dancers of gentleman’s clubs as many of the pioneers around the world originated from their adapting and transforming the new moves of today.

First came the Pole Dance (Pole Passion 2001), then the pole fitness (Pole Passion 2006 REP’s Accredited Instructor Training ) then the pole sport (World Pole Sport & Fitness 2009)

UK Pole Pioneers since 2001
Founder Kay Penney

Why would you recommend the challenge of pole sport fitness and dance to everyone ?

Kay Penney Founder Pole Passion | Miss Pole Dance UK | World Pole Dance

- For me pole sport and fitness incorporates many positive elements, mentally and physically, to support the demands of physical progressive training, to maintain and progress physical fitness in a fun and empowering way
Pole also has a massive, positive social element to it also, creating a supportive environment for many to reach, maintain and progress physical training despite different backgrounds, religious cultures and beliefs. You can structure pole in so many ways to support all who wish to do it and make it as physically demanding as you wish.
It helps build confidence too, which you can incorporate in to all other areas of your life too

Karen Davis Pole Passion  Banstead

- There are many levels to Pole which is what makes it suitable for everyone regardless of age, body shape and fitness level. Pole is hard but the sense of achievement you get from mastering a new move makes you feel amazing, whether it's just sitting on the pole or a crazy inverted master piece.
Start at the bottom and work your way through, there is so much to learn and the limits are endless.

Qualities of a National Judge - Miss Pole Dance UK | World Pole Dance Sport & Fitness 2015

Organisers and competitors require competent & loyal judges
So what makes a good pole competition judge?

Integrity – honest, upright and committed to the positive image and rules of Pole Dance and Fitness

Professional competence 
Ethical to fellow workers, audiences, contestants and sponsors
A sound understanding of health & safety on and around the Pole 
Abiding by the Code of Pole Practice 2008
Keen intellect 
Extensive pole knowledge
Fair and constructive
Clear & quick analyser & thinker
Concise & clear writer
Good understanding of English (written and spoken)

Judicial temperament 
Respectful – including all social media ( no swearing)
Strong communicator
100% reliable
Team player

Strong record of professional sport, fitness, dance & pole excellence 
Knowledgeable and educated about Pole techniques and or choreography and or performing
An Understanding of the pressures, mentally & physically of the competitors when performing & competing
   Health and fitness back ground and a good understanding of the bio mechanics of the body around the   pole and floor work
Commitment to the pole community of none less than 2 years
Passionate about promoting & representing pole competitions  and the pole industry, how so ever represented in a positive and professional manner at all times
One who takes the position seriously and researches the competition rules they are representing 
Understanding the sacrifices of the contestant will make financially, professionally and personally
Well respected by their peers and in their pole dance community
It is inappropriate to comment on any issue which may be considered personal or political

Apply now if you would like to be considered as a National Miss Pole Dance UK judge
Email us on  -

Mimi the 10 year old pole dancer stuns the crowd at Miss Pole Dance UK Amateurs & Semi professional championships

10 year old Mimi, performed her gymnastic routine on and around two vertical bars to wow the crowd once again.
Pole Dancing Mimi yet again stunned the adult audience of men and women at the recent Miss Pole Dance UK amateur and Semi professional championships in Felbridge East Grinstead, during her 3 and a half minute performance

Mini and her mum, joined by Mimi's brother and father, performed in front of an appreciative audience on 28th June 2015.  She combined her flips, tumbles, back bends and cartwheels on and around the poles to her chosen piece of music. One day Mimi would like to be considered for the pole olympics, who knows she could be the next youth World Champion too