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Seasonal Changes and Grip Changes

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I live in the northern hemisphere, and where I live we are solidly in the winter weather here.  For this area, winter weather is cold.  It can be extremely cold- today the high was -2 degrees Fahrenheit (that s -19C).

The cold air can make sticking to the pole a big problem.  The cold air is extremely dry and extremely dry skin does not stick to poles at all.  When poles are cold they also do not allow a dancer to stick (this is not so much of a problem for brass poles).

There are ways to overcome the cold pole and dry skin issues. Before going straight into trick work it is best to warm up your pole. I like to do this by doing a variety of leg holds to get the pole nice and warmed up and sticky. This has the added benefit of starting to warm up my body as well.

Then by doing a little floor freestyle or ground pole work (basic spins etc) usually for about one song or so I feel sufficiently loose and warm.

Sometimes that is enough to allow for good grip.  Sometimes, it’s not.  This is the perfect time to use grip aids.  Grip aids should not be used to replace grip strength but rather to compensate for conditions beyond the dancers control, such as temperature or extremely dry conditions.

Products that inhibit perspiration are not useful in this situation.  One of the most popular products that is marketed for this situation is Platinum Grip.  It can be used all over the body, I prefer to use it behind my knees and on my inner thighs.  Experiment with it and see what works best for you. With this product a little goes a long way, an itsy bitsy amount goes a long way, use less than half the size of a pea, too much can make a giant mess.

Another important thing to remember is not to use lotion before you pole.  This is one of the first rules of pole dancing but in the winter it can be hard to remember.  Save the moisturising for off days.   My favorite moisturiser for the shower is Olay with Ribbons.  It adds a lot of moisture without residue and causing gunk on my pole.  It also can minimise my need for grip aids.

Seasonal changes cause skin changes which can impact how dancers stick to the pole as well as the pole itself.  It is not necessary to suffer through a season with no grip- there are techniques and products that dancers can use to help counter the dry cold weather.

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