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Vertical Swag Wrist Wraps

If you’ve been reading my blog, you may have noticed that I occasionally talk about my wrist pain from pole dancing. I wanted to take a minute to share one of the things that I believe has helped me lessen the pain! Sometime last year, a pole sister of mine (one of my pole “sponsees” – a gal I got into poling) mentioned that she’d been using wrist wraps while poling to give her wrists added support. I thought it was an interesting idea, but because of my ADD, it pretty much leaked out of my brain five minutes after the conversation. A little while later, I happened to come across a giveaway on Pole Dancing Adventures, offering up the wrist wraps from Vertical Swag. While I was not the winner of the giveaway, I did end up buying a pair of my own. You may have seen me sporting them in various photos:

Titanic from the floor

Titanic from the floor

Learning the Iris

Learning the Iris

Lyra move (death star??)

Lyra move (death star??)

Lyra move (death star??) from the side

Lyra move (death star??) from the side

In all of these photos, I have on my zebra striped Vertical Swag wrist wraps. I do think they’ve helped me stabilize my wrists, especially since I’ve been working to move into more aerial/twisted grip moves. TG is hard on my right wrist, which is my “pull” wrist (the hand that is “up” in all of my TG moves). After taking two weeks off from class because of the holidays and my busy work schedule, all it took was one class filled with twisted grip moves and handspring work for my wrist to be in a ton of pain – and, of course, I had neglected to take the time to put on my wrist wraps before that class, which was not smart – I think it would have helped a lot if I’d put them on! Since then, I’ve been keeping my wrist wrapped a good portion of the time that I am not in class (depends on the day and what I’m up to), and I went back to using my wrist wraps, even in Lyra, which is normally not that bad on my wrist. I think the wraps have helped with the pain!

I do think that some of my wrist pain would be better if I a) was better conditioned in my wrists and forearms b) lost a little bit of weight. Now, don’t think I’m complaining about being fat or something – the simple fact is that less weight on a sensitive wrist would be a good thing. I’m asking my wrists to support 157ish pounds, and while conditioning would CERTAINLY help that, I’m sure my wrists would love me for laying off junk food for a bit.

The wrist wraps, however, are a great, affordable little helper! They add stability, but also keep the joint warm, which is nice. They’re 100% cotton, easily washable, and simple to use. Here’s a great little demo video of how to put them on and secure them:

Vertical Swag offers a number of colors and styles – my zebra print is no longer listed, but there’s a cute teal version! I love that they’re made for pole dancers, BY a pole dancer, so you get to support a fellow poler AND a small business by purchasing them. You can purchase your wraps at http://verticalswag.com/wraps/ – the front page of the site says that there is currently a New Year’s sale going on, so you can save 25% off right now!  They also offer other products for polers, like shoe and grip bags. You can check them out online at www.verticalswag.com and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/VerticalSwag

I’ll have some more fun updates again soon! Happy Poling!

The Jenyne Tumble

If you’ve watched a lot of Jenyne Butterfly performance videos on YouTube (God knows I have), you know she’s amazing. She has such astounding control in everything she does. One of the things I have seen her do a lot is a specific “tumble” down the pole, and every time I see it, I’m equal parts impressed and envious. I don’t think I’m alone in that respect. :-)

While watching elite competitors, I tend to automatically look for the tricks I know how to do, or tricks I think might work for me, in hopes I can learn them or perfect them, or learn how to effortlessly put them into a dance (as opposed to, “Okay, gonna invert now.”) The Jenyne Tumble is one of those combos that I didn’t think I’d be able to do for years. Literally. It just looks so hard to me!

Cut to class last night at TPG. With Drea absent from teaching (Happy Anniversary!), Jo was subbing. We had a small class, since none of our usual students showed up for whatever reason – it was me and a gal doing a make up (Michelle). It was SO their loss! We had a great class with the three of us. Jo ran us through some spins, including a few I hadn’t learned, which was fun, and then she worked with us on the Iris (I think that’s the name?), which I had learned the week before with Drea – it’s a variation on extended butterfly:

Learning the Iris

As you can see, Drea is spotting me in the first attempt, but I moved along to doing it on my own by the end of the class! I got it fairly quickly for me – it was good to try it again in class this week, too! It comes from the extended butterfly (which I’m doing with twisted grip), and once you’re in that trick, you bring your outside leg back to the pole, hooking at the top of the foot/toes, then you bring your inside leg down into a tuck/crunch inside your upper arm. It’s a pretty pose, and if you’re strong at aerial, you can throw it into an aerial sequence. I think it’d also be pretty on spinning pole. I’m not quite strong enough in my aerial to include it in a combo, but I’m close!

The big project of the night, however, was learning the Jenyne Tumble. She does it in this video around the 1:58 mark:

So pretty, right?

Now, on my first attempt, I got confused after the sit on what to do with my bottom arm and aborted the mission. Second attempt? Quite nearly fell on my head. Jo had to catch me, and she did so about a foot off the ground (Thank you!). My mistake in that run – after watching her break it down again – was that I released my top leg before securing my lower arm. So, you know, DON’T do that. :-) But, I kept at it, and by the third or fourth time, I was so much better! I damn near cried when I got it right after falling. Persevere, y’all. Anyway, this video was my final attempt at it. While I still have work to do on making it fluid, as well as on the control issue (I’m still shaky on the “leap of faith” moment in the middle), I’m still thrilled that I went from falling on my head to being able to work through it. :-)

Also, if you’re curious: I am wearing the new tank and shorts from our pole apparel line, Poleitical Clothing! We had a great launch at CPDC, and I’ll post on that soon. But, in the meantime, check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and Etsy, which is where you can purchase items from us! The full link for the online store is here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/poleiticalclothing We’re still working out the kinks in that system (i.e. delivery costs), but it is open for shopping! I also am wearing my wrist wraps from Vertical Swag, which have been helping stabilize my wrists while I work on aerial, and my heart rate monitor to track calories – that’ll be a new post soon, too!

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