Flip it and Reverse It

Bouncing off an article I wrote last week about flipping tricks upside down, I was so excited to hear about Natasha Wang’s training tip!

“take a combo you’ve been practicing and reverse it”

For ease of explanation let’s refer to a simpler combo.

Usual Combo In Reverse
straddle inside leg hang
outside leg hang push to butterfly
butterfly outside leg hang
sweep to inside leg hang straddle

Already just from word choice (sweep to as opposed to push to) it can been seen that the technique components and flow are different. Working with gravity and the spin or working against it, challenge your strength and possible contact points.

Just like trying things on your goofy side, certain combos are going to feel completely whack when reversed!

Similarly, some transitions in reverse are going to look smoother than others, but in terms of creative choreography this would be a great way to spice up a routine and surprise a pole familiar audience.

I gave it shot this week during my home practice.



and in reverse ….


Tag me in your videos on Instagram and Facebook! I’d love to see what you come up with!

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.

Train Both Sides

2016-02-02 21.23.39Last year I made a conscious effort to train both sides. I even went back to basics in the studio, joining a lower class to work on inside and outside leg hangs and simple combos.

And I can finally say, that it’s starting to pay off!

If you’re an advanced pole dancer you will know that many combos at higher levels require you to interchange with both sides. To land on your good side split, you might need to start on a goofy side leg hang. Or to make sure your strong arm is in the right place in your ayesha, you will need to hook your goofy leg at the beginning of the sequence.

Essentially, you should have no good and bad side for the fundamental moves. Super human pole dancers seem to be able to do everything on both sides, but let’s stick to the basics for now.

The list of moves I was working through for both sides is as follows:

  • floor spins (chair spin, angel, back grab, front hook etc) – left hand high, right hand high
  • climbs – left leg in front, right leg in front
  • straddle – both sides
  • layback – left leg on top, right leg on top
  • hangback – cross knee release and cross ankle release
  • hello boys / wrist seat – left hand high, right hand high
  • inside leg hang – both sides
  • outside leg hang – both sides
  • cupid – both sides
  • pike – both sides
  • butterfly – both sides
  • shoulder mount – both sides
  • brass monkey – both sides


I’d also like to add that training both sides for these fundamental moves also helps you remember the contact points and important components of their technique. Sometimes we have learned a move so long ago we’ve filed it in muscle memory and are less aware off what our bodies are doing to hold on. Relearning the basics was also a great mental exercise in discovering what my body was actually doing in each pose.

I’d like to add jade split, ayesha variations and allegra on both sides this year. Especially after seeing the fruits of my labour for the list above in the last few months.

Surprisingly my shoulder mount on both sides was easier than an outside leg hang and cupid. Even my goofy brass monkey seemed to stick more often! It’s taken a long time to feel secure hanging by my goofy leg. But then today .… break through!

Cupid on both sides, so secure, no hands! Success!

So please persist! It hurts, there are bruises, but you will get there! It will help your body feel more balanced and it will make advanced combos so much less scary when you are asked to land in a goofy leg hang!