Welcome to Miss Fit Academy's blog! MFA is Nashville's leading pole dance studio and aerial boutique! Visit our official website or call us at (615) 891-3910.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Nashville Street Poling 101

So you've learned a few pole dance moves and you're ready to hit the town and show them off! Get ready because we're going to tell you how and where to go.
First & foremost...
Street pole at your own risk. It can be dangerous, so please be careful. Do not attempt to street pole if you have never pole danced before and/or if you are under the influence of alcohol.

What is street poling you ask?

   street noun a public thoroughfare, usually paved, in a town, or city, including the sidewalk
   poling verb the act of using a pole for any purpose.

   Also known as Urban Poling or Outdoor Poling.

Street Poling is the act of pole dancing on any object that resembles a pole. This can include street signs, pipes, flag poles, lamp posts, etc. The entire world becomes your giant playground. Street Poling is a known side effect of being a pole enthusiast. Why keep the fun behind closed doors? Show your skills to the world!

Warning: The excitement of pole dancing can be difficult to control in public and may lead to overly annoyed family/friends and possibly being banned from a playground.

How to Street Pole Effectively

Preparation

Clothing: Be sure to wear clothing that is optimal for pole dancing, such as shorts and a tank top. Wear shoes that are easy to slide off and back on in case you have to leave very, very quickly. Remember not to wear lotion that day.

Materials: Always keep wipes, napkins and pole grip in your purse. Use the wipes to clean the "pole" and then dry with the napkins. This will ensure a safer grip. You can also use the pole grip for extra gripping ability. Bring a camera so you can document the undertaking.

Stretch: Be sure to stretch adequately before street poling. No one wants to pull a muscle in the name of fun!

Weather: Check the weather. Street poling is best on a sunny, warm day. It is not advised to do it in the rain and especially not a good idea during thunderstorms and lightening.

Location

There are tons of great places to street pole in Nashville, Tennessee! Here are a few:

Second & Broadway - There are many objects that resemble poles in this busy bar and restaurant district. The Hard Rock CafĂ© has a great brass awning that works well.

Centennial Park - light posts, playgrounds or bring your portable stage pole and set it up by the Parthenon replica.

Shelby Bottoms Park - playground, swing sets, and it's a nice place to enjoy a sunny day.


Street poling

Urban Students on street poles

Nashville Courthouse

Nicole street poling

Street poling in Park

downtown street poling

Steps

Now that you have everything prepared and ready to go, gather a friend or two and head out to one of the locations above or go on an adventure and find one of your own.

Once you have located a sturdy pole-like structure, use your wipes to clean and disinfect the "pole". Then dry it with a towel or napkins and apply grip to your hands if needed.

Remember to have your friend close by in case you need a spotter and to snap pictures.

Have fun Street Poling and be sure to leave comments and send us your pictures! 

Best Street Poling Videos on YouTube


Saturday, June 22, 2013

A Different Kind of Reflection

I noticed you don't have any mirrors in your pole dance studio. Why is that?

Cat looking into mirror
This is a common question we hear and a good question! At Urban Studio, we have two dance rooms - one of them is a pole dance studio and the other is a community dance studio. The community dance studio has mirrors and hosts many classes, such as Booty Pop & Clap, Salsa, Burlesque, Music City Burlesque rehearsals and various community events.

Our pole dance studio has ten dance poles, a professional sound system, a sitting area, private restroom and everything a typical pole dance studio has, BUT it does not have ANY mirrors. This is because we are NOT a typical pole dance studio. Keep reading to find out why! :)

While we believe mirrors are important for learning and practicing isolations, comparing similar movements, booty shaking and for competitor-level students, we don't feel they are necessary for pole dancing classes. Classes are more three dimensional now and our methods of instruction must evolve in order to accommodate modern women. This is Urban Studio's approach. Everyone, from beginners to advanced students, can benefit from plain Jane walls. Here's why we banned mirrors (for now) in our pole dance studio:

1. Student-Instructor Connection
We like to face our students as much as possible. It provides a better connection and we can easily see who needs help, who likes or doesn't like the content, who is having fun, etc. You can't hide in the back and hope the instructor won't see you. Our instructors walk around and work with each student - correcting posture and physically adjusting or moving student's body parts to get them into the correct position. We also provide instruction from the back view when needed.

2. Interaction and camaraderie
Not having mirrors encourages students to interact with each other. They give each other feedback and tell each other how amazing the other person looks when they do a particular move. Then they share ideas, their favorite moves, tips, etc. It creates a positive environment and many of our students have made lasting friendships through class interaction.

3. Feeling & Loving
Another advantage of learning without mirrors is that students develop an intuition and sensitivity of how certain movements feel with their own bodies. Students are encouraged to be "hands-on" by touching themselves - putting hands on hips, butt, etc. It gives you a sense of how the movement feels, how your hands feel your body doing that move, how beautiful your body really is and ultimately makes women feel more comfortable in their own skin. It's a huge confidence booster.

4. Physical Sensation and Muscle Memory
Many women focus on what they look like instead of what the movement feels like. Once you know how the movement actually feels, you are likely to remember that movement. Those feelings become more deeply ingrained into your head, which results in better muscle memory and the ability to remember what you learned.

5. Mirrors are a distraction, which can result in:
  • Paranoia - Some women feel awkward when looking in the mirror. It's distracting if you are focusing on your larger than normal hips, cellulite or thicker ankles. Dancing should be a positive activity, not a time to compare body types or obsess about flaws.
  • Discomfort - Many women feel uncomfortable seeing themselves engaging in awkward new movements. You will feel less ridiculous if you cannot see what you are attempting.
  • Competition - When you can see everyone else in the mirror, you may find yourself trying to keep up with everyone else. We encourage our students to learn at their own pace and to listen to their bodies. You should only do what YOUR body can handle. Listening to your body is so important and we can't emphasis this enough.
  • Injuries - If you are too busy looking at what you look like, you may not be focusing on what you should be doing or listening to your instructor. We have seen this many times - a student will be staring at her booty shaking or watching herself in the mirror while the instructor is teaching something new. The student wasn't listening because she was clearly distracted. The next thing you know she is attempting the move that she did not properly learn. This results in injuries. Also, if you are upside down doing a tricky move and turn your head to look in the mirror, that could easily cause you to lose your positioning and fall off the pole. Scary!
6. We use our plain Jane walls, every inch of them!
Did you know walls are a useful tool for dancing and stretching? We utilize our walls every day - from choreography to intense back stretches to splits training. Everyone has walls so we love to teach things students can take home and practice without having to buy equipment.

7. Staring obsession
Have you ever watched a YouTube video of a pole dance and the dancer keeps watching herself in the mirror? It looks silly. Example 1Example 2. A good dancer doesn't need instant visual feedback.

8. Better Performances
When you are performing on a stage and look at your audience, you can't see your reflection. It can be a deer-in-headlights moment if you are used to watching your routine when you practice. The best performances are by performers that have a strong physical connection with their routine. They work the audience while doing what their body already knows well. This is accomplished by practicing without mirrors.

Those are the major reasons we do not have mirrors in our pole dance studio. We also encourage our students to video themselves dancing. It allows them to see themselves if they choose to do so and provides an easy way to track their progress.

Perhaps one day Urban Studio will get optional mirrors that can be easily covered and concealed. We shall see. It would take some serious convincing. Until then, we are proud of our plain Jane walls and everything they have to offer.


This article describes another studio that has a similar philosophy.
Her dance studio has no mirrors

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Ways to keep new mommies sane

In honor of Kim Kardashian giving birth and Princess Kate getting ready to, we decided to focus our attention today on new mothers. Here are a few tips on how new mommies can avoid losing their $hit while getting used to having a new little one around.


New mothers tips
They both look so elegant! (Kim finally found a flattering maternity dress!)

Ain't nobody got time for that...

Many experts recommend new moms have a set schedule in place. Keep track of nap and feeding times for about a week and use those times to create and maintain a schedule. This will help take the stress and guess work out of figuring out why the baby gets fussy. New mothers have to wake up all hours of the night to keep baby fed and happy, so the new mom loses sleep and can become CA-RAY-ZAY. Napping while baby is napping will help tone down the going crazy part. The baby also needs a ton of sleep since it's little brain is developing quickly, so moms should take that opportunity to get some ZzZzZz's.

Keep a baby schedule
Condensed Version

Mommy needs some do, re, ME time...

New moms need to remember that they absolutely need to set aside some time for themselves. Whether that means a day at the spa, a movie with the girls, or an hour sitting in the living room reading a magazine. Many sites suggest joining a sports league, taking exercise classes (This is where Beginner Pole Dance and Flexibility & Floorplay come in handy!), start a garden, or just walk around a shopping mall/store. BTW - Many cosmetic counters inside department stores will give free mini facials or makeovers. Take advantage of that, especially moms on a budget!

No matter how needy your family is or how much daddy screws up, Momma still needs "me time" to stay sane. Let daddy or family pitch in to take care of the baby a few hours each week. This will do wonders for mom's happiness.

Make mom time
SWEET FREEDOM!!!! (Insert war cry)
Keep your Big Girl Panties on...

Let's face it, new moms are often so busy tending to baby's needs, that they get sucked into baby world! Make sure mom gets in enough adult time. Have adult conversations over the phone once a day, host a game night, read a book, or do some Sudoku or crossword puzzles. New moms should continue to challenge their brain so they don't feel their I.Q. dropping points or start talking goo goo ga ga gibber in public.
Stay focused
Big words! Full sentences! I feel so grown up!

New mothers think alike...

Your single days are long gone! You don't need to forget about your single friends, but you should definitely friend other new mothers. You will enjoy bonding over baby moments, sharing tips and advice and going out on dates. Not the kind of dates you fantasize about - we're talking about play dates. This is the perfect excuse to go outside, get some sunshine (vitamin D) and socialize with another mom like yourself. The babies will love it too!

Please share YOUR New Mommy tips below!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Flexibility & Floorplay

If you haven't had the opportunity to try Flexibility & Floorplay, keep reading because we're dishing the details of this super hot class!

You may have been to or heard of flexibility and stretching classes, but Urban Studio has taken this task to a whole new level! No, we're not talking about yoga! This is a seriously sexy stretching class called Flexibility & Floorplay and it will have you feeling long, limber AND playful in just 60 minutes.

Flexibility & Floorplay
The class starts with simple, light stretches combined with feline-like movement to get you warmed up and feeling good. This is done to some great chill music, allowing you to leave your worries behind and focus on your body's slow and sultry movements. By the end of the floor work, your body will feel longer and eager for more. 
Class then shifts to complex stretching - intense stretches that may make you feel slightly uncomfortable at times. But don't fret! The instructor provides alternative stretches and easier versions for every level of flexibility. This allows beginners to work on the same muscle group without as much difficulty.
Students attending class
Look at those splits! Amazing!

The class focuses on different parts of the body, too. One week you will be working on your splits. The next week you may be working on your shoulders or back. You can never get bored at this class!

The best part of Flexibility & Floorplay is that everything you learn can be practiced at home and integrated as part of your daily routine. Your instructor will teach you how to use, not only the floor, but also ordinary objects, such as walls and chairs to increase your flexibility. Remember to take note of the proper technique before attempting these stretches at home. Some of them should be done with a partner and/or supervision.

Raven showing her flexibility
Raven - Master of Flexibility


If you didn't get an intense core workout, then you didn't come to THIS class because it will AB-solutely strengthen your oh-so-hard-to-tone middle section. Your instructor will guide you through a challenging, but attainable core workout.

Before you know it, you will be able to do the splits, bend in half and possibly lift your legs over your head... if you really want to!

Let us know what you think of Urban Studio's Flexibility & Floorplay class if you have attended one. We love feedback! And if you haven't attended, sign up here: Class Registration. Reserve your spot in advance because this popular class often fills up before class begins.

Happy Stretching!
XoXoX,
Urban Studio

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Our favorite healthy recipes

Let's face it, we all love food! Whether you love spicy, salty, sweet, or even bitter, we have found healthy recipes everyone can love! If you have one you love and don't see it below, share it with us in the comments!

Philly Cheese steak Stuffed Peppers - Find the recipe here!

Healthy Philly Cheese
This one is a personal favorite. For those who are vegetarian, I use tempeh flavored with Maggi seasoning sauce. Works like a charm! But, if you are feeling more authentic, use some Tofurky peppered deli slices with the Maggi sauce.

Portabella Pizza Bites - Find the recipe here!

Healthy Pizza bites
These are super easy to make and very filling. They also make a great appetizer.
Vegetable Tian - Find the recipe here!
Vegetable Tian
This dish is so yummy and super healthy! Can be a side dish or add some protein to make it the main course.
Zucchini Chips - Find the recipe here!
Zucchini Chips
These aren't your normal zucchini chips! These have a great Parmesan and bread crumb coating, making them crispy and savory.

NOW FOR SOME SWEETS! 

(My favorite part!)

Primal Fudge - Find the recipe here!

Healthy Confections
The coconut oil makes it taste like a Mounds bar! These are perfect for a sweet craving and incredibly easy to make. Put a dab of peanut butter on top to add some protein!


Zucchini Brownies - Find the recipe here!

Zucchini Brownies
Don't let the fact that these have zucchini in them throw you off. They are cake-like brownies that actually taste like brownies and not zucchini bread.. And there is very little flour and no oil or eggs used! 

 Peach Pie Popsicles - Find the recipe here!

Frozen peach pops
Perfect summer treat! These are light and tasty as well as SUPER easy to make!

Enjoy all of these yummy recipes. And, don't forget to share yours! We love trying new recipes!
You can also find all these recipes on Pinterest!