For both strength and flexibility training, sometimes your best choice is to try a new apparatus!
You might have stall bars in your studio, local gym, or maybe in an outdoor playground, and they can be a great asset to your pole training – just ask Oona.
I have been using the stall bars during my warm up and for added conditioning, supporting my strength and flexibility training as well as alignment. My work on the bars has also supported building strength and coordination on my goofy side, the horizontal format allowing me to focus on technique before taking those skills to the pole.
Here are just three ways I’ve been building my stall bar workout:
I have many posts about how yoga has helped with my back bends, but the stall bars open up new opportunities for opening my chest and shoulders.
Drop backs can be scary and without a spotter or the right technique you risk crunching through your lower back or hurting your wrists as you land. The stall bars can support you as you walk your way down to the floor, or back up. It’s often gentler on the wrists to hold on to the rails and you can move slowly, allowing you to focus on alignment and technique.
The theory behind pole moves talks a lot about push vs pull, stacking joints, muscle engagement, and breath. When you’re upside-down, however, it’s hard to remember which leg is your left and right let alone think about all those things!
Lots of work on the stall bars can happen with your feet on floor, or at least just off it, inviting you to work on engaging muscle groups and consider alignment before you go upside-down. This kind of training will build muscle memory and strength to reduce the risk of injury or poor technique in more advanced moves.
Let’s face it, crunches are boring! If you’re a pole dancer, you probably find lots of other exercise boring, which is one of the reasons you started dancing in the first place! But, what if there was a way to make strength training fun again?
Hanging leg lifts are a great ab workout and will incorporate many more muscle groups than sit ups on the floor. Try them with bent knees, straight legs, to the side, air walking. Your straight leg straddles will thank you!
For more advanced stall bar tricks, please check out the experts – Oona and Nadia make their workout look just like kids on a jungle gym! What could be more fun than that?