Fly Together Fitness highlights All Pole is Valid with this series of instructor profiles — each has their unique style and journey, but are united in their passion for pole and love for the community that brings them together. We hope their stories resonate with yours!
Hi Alicia! Tell me about yourself.
I’m a 31 year old scientist who loves all things biology. Whether it’s studying zebrafish in the lab or thinking about body mechanics in pole dance, I am passionate about learning and discovering new things. I grew up in the Raleigh area in North Carolina and then moved to LA when I was 22 years old. I spent 3 years in LA before I moved to Boston, where I’m now working as a postdoctoral fellow studying cancer research at Boston Children’s Hospital. When I’m not working in the lab or at the studio, I love spending time with my husband, our 2 dogs and cat, and our 1-month-old baby boy!
Everyone in the pole community has a unique journey. What's yours?
I discovered pole dancing when buying a Groupon for a class at my local studio in North Carolina in 2012. I watched some YouTube videos and was absolutely terrified but super excited to try it! My father had recently passed away and I was starting graduate school, so my anxiety was at an all time high. Pole helped me through those difficult times because it totally changed my relationship with my mind and body and allowed me to find my voice through dance. When I moved to LA a year and a half later, it instantly gave me a supportive community and helped me make friends in a new city. I found the same thing when I moved to Boston in 2016 and started teaching pole. Co-owning a pole dance studio and having the opportunity to bring the joy of pole to others has definitely been the best part of my pole journey… I can’t wait to see where it takes me in the future!
What’s something you wished you had known when you started pole dancing?
I wish I had known that you don’t have to have any sort of athletic background before starting. I ran track in high school (and hated it) and was nervous about starting because I hadn’t done dance or gymnastics. My fears were completely unfounded because you build the strength and flexibility you need as you go! Also, I wish I had known about grip aids (liquid chalk, antiperspirants for your hands/feet, etc)… I sweat a lot and discovering the right grip aid for me (I’m looking at you Tite grip!) was key to my pole journey.
How has pole impacted other aspects of your life?
Pole has impacted almost every aspect of my life! It has given me so much confidence, greatly improved my mind-body connection, and helped me be more body-positive by re-defining what “healthy” means for me. Pole has also helped me examine (and reject!) society’s perceptions of sexuality and body standards. The physical strength I’ve gained from pole dancing has definitely empowered me in my daily life as well. If I’m ever feeling down at work or elsewhere in the muggle world, there’s nothing that makes you feel more badass than knowing you can lift your own body weight to hang upside down on a metal pole 10 feet in the air! Finally, the supportive pole community has allowed me to make friends all over the country. Pole studios have always felt like home to me because they bring people together from all different walks of life to share in the joy of self-exploration and celebrate the amazing things our bodies can do!
What do you teach at Fly Together Fitness? Any favorite moves or specialties?
I teach all levels of pole, from Intro to Level 3. Although I enjoy learning new tricks and revisiting old ones, my true love is creating flowy combinations and dancing! My favorite thing to do when pole dancing is to string together basic moves and find creative ways into and out of them. I also really enjoy both freestyle and choreography for all levels, which is what I teach in Intro to Sensual Movement!