Tagpole challenge

Stall Bar Challenge

Join us in July for the #stallbarchallenge!

I’ve teamed up with Pole In Style and Mighty Grip to bring the best cross training challenge to the Internet! Stall bars are one of the most effective off the pole apparatus that pole dancers and aerialists can use to up their training game.

“Lots of aerial arts rely on creating tension between two points, usually with a “push vs pull” action. This motion is best performed when joints are stacked, and muscle engagement is coordinated with your breath. This is a lot to remember when you are learning an aerial trick, and poses can be even more difficult with the swing and sway of hoop, or the spin of pole!

Learning how to engage the appropriate muscles in your back, or work on activating your glutes from the ground, can be a safer and more effective way to train. Stall bars are a static apparatus and many of these exercises can be practiced with your feet only just off the floor. Training with good technique helps you to build muscle memory and strength, reducing the risk of injury or aggravating imbalances in your body.”

Baby poler Mel in 2016!

I have been using stall bars as part of my warm ups and conditioning program since 2016, learning about muscle engagement and building up strength for moves before taking them in the air. Now I am ready to share some of my favourite exercises with you!

All entrants in the challenge will also go in the draw to win amazing pole wear from Pole In Style and grip aids from Mighty Grip!

What do you need to do?

Join the #stallbarchallenge from 1st to 31st July 2018.

How to enter:
1. Like and repost this photo on Instagram and tag your friends in the comments
2. Follow host @melnutter_baudelaire and sponsors @mighty_grip and @poleinstyle
3. Complete all 8 exercise challenges before 31st July
4. Make sure your Instagram profile is public so we can see your progress
5. Share your videos using hashtag #stallbarchallenge, and tag @melnutter_baudelaire @mighty_grip and @poleinstyle in each post

July 1st – Tucks
July 5th – Push Ups
July 8th – Plank
July 12th – Sit Ups
July 15th – Dragon Flag
July 19th – Side Plank
July 22nd – Iguana Mount
July 26th – Split Grip

You can find stall bars in your local gym, pole studio, or even in playgrounds outdoors. Keep and eye out and prepare yourself for a month of strength building! See you on Instagram!

Upside Down, upside down!

Mr squiggle

United Pole Artists recently released an article recently about learning pole tricks from the floor. I am a huge supporter of this kind of training especially as a home poler who doesn’t always have a spotter. By working out the contact points and body position of a trick from the floor you can focus on technique without the risk of falling. Floor based straddles and shoulder mounts are also great conditioning exercises!

A conversation online about the pole trick Crescent Moon got me thinking about extending on this idea.

Crescent Moon

The Crescent Moon comes from a layback, and requires some pretty amazing shoulder and back flex to reach around under yourself, forming an upside down Nike tick shape. Sadly, I have seen girls fall while attempting this trick as when you push through your arms and shoulders to arch you back, you can lose grip in your thighs and tumble off the pole in a crumpled mess 🙁


Sharing ideas about how to train this move as part of the online discussion thread, I was surprised that I was the only one who suggested trying it from the floor – and upsidedown!

flippedConsider the Crescent Moon shape and now flip it. Mine is not so bendy but you will get the idea. It’s much like a cobra pose in yoga, up the pole this is known as a Dove. But could you make the same shape on the floor? Legs along the floor and arms up and over your head back to the pole?

It’s also interesting to think about tricks as upside down version of other tricks.

A Ballerina is very similar to a inside leg hang.

A Russian lay back and a Seahorse have similar leg positions.

A Superman and a bottom hand plank.

Even a figure skater and a brass monkey.

See them for yourself, lock your screen rotation and scroll through your Instagram feed upside down!

I challenge you! Enhance your pole training and challenge your brain as you consider what other moves might be possible inverted, or right way up. Tag me in your posts on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. I’d love to see what you come up with!

*For those not privy to the Mr Squiggle reference, this charming puppet was the character in a kid’s TV programme aired in Australia from 1959 – 1999. The man controlling the marionette was leaning over a shelf off screen, which meant all of his drawings were “upside down upside down” now a loved catch phrase along with the line from the grump blackboard – “Hur-ry up!”. Essential viewing.

April Pole Challenge

calendar for tv april


Tropical Vertical from Instagram has started an April Pole Challenge directed by the alphabet. Come and join in using any pole move you know that starts with the letter for that day! Sunday is rest day so we can ease in for the month with just two pole poses.

No need to post advanced moves, do what you can as long as it starts with that letter. Just remember to use the #pd__ to help categorise the moves and make for easy searching later on.

See you on Instagram!

Learn from the Best


I have been blessed on my pole journey to have had the opportunity to train with many pole superstars. My first introduction to pole dance was from Jamilla Deville, who personally ran the eight week beginners course from her then studio, Art of Pole.

Additionally, I have taken workshops with Natasha Wang, Michelle Stanek, Amy Hazel, and Kristy Sellars. Sydney Pole is also well decked out in terms of instructors, including Mr Pole Dance Australia himself, Chris Talbot, Mr Pole Dance Australia runner up David Aeon, and professionals Missy, Bailey Hart, Ryder and Cynthia Xu. Local superstars and now owners of their own studios, Dallas Dee and Elle Lacroix were also involved in the beginnings of Sydney Pole.

I understand that everyone does not have such access to such an array great dancers, choreographers, and inspirational people. Home polers, especially can find their practice isolating, needing extra motivation some days to get up and dance.


Instagram and social media can be your friend! Most of the Instagram accounts related to pole dancers are personally managed by the dancers themselves. And in my experience, every single one is absolutely lovely! They respond to your questions, reply to comments and will support you in your dance journey.

Just the other week I tried out a combo from AerialAmy, who also trains in her own home! After watching and re-watching to work out all the points of contact and technique, it was not only rewarding to have nailed a new transition, but it made it even more special to hear from AerialAmy herself as she commented on my post.

Most people in the pole community are supportive of collaborating and trick sharing too. Just make sure you credit the name of the trick/transition and share the love. Dirdy Birdy even has a second account that is purely focused on sharing work from other dancers.

The monthly pole challenges that lend themselves to the Instagram format are also great ways to connect to the pole community, learn some new tricks, and locate inspirational dancers.

There’s no more excuses! Start watching and start dancing! You may even find you inspire someone yourself!

I Hear Jingle Bells!

xmas pole challengeXmas Pole Challenge – Volare Magazine

This challenge has some of my all time favourite pole artists, and is sponsored by some great pole brands! In the lead up to Christmas with no more comps and only a group showcase to go, it will be great motivation to get on the pole and try and smash those pole goals before the end of the year!

I wrote about pole challenges before, suggesting they are a great way to learn new tricks and try things outside of your normal pole routine. Considering this list, many of the tricks are familiar – Layback, Pike, Jade Split, Crescent. Some I have heard of but never accomplished – Remi Sit, Sneaky V, Kelly Tilt. And others are completely new – Dragon Fly, Trapped Runner, Back Split?

With such big names in this challenge, and big sponsors, I can see this as a great chance to network between pole champions and those poling at home in their lounge room. It’s not often I praise technology, but this kind of social networking is amazing!

Join me for the challenge! And help me work out how to do a Dragon Fly!

Miss Filly Pole Challenge!

UntitledI am really enjoying the Instagram Pole Challenges this year. They have a great range of tricks and conditioning exercises and I’ve found new motivation to pole at home!

October sees the beginning of the Miss Filly Pole Challenge! Rather than just posting a list of tricks, this challenge is a chance to explore the many facets of pole dance – freestyle, floorwork, pole fashion, pole family, nutrition and food, being fierce, and being feminine!

Looking forward to getting creative and getting to know other pole dancers as they share a bit more about themselves too!