Posted onFebruary 21, 2017 by email@example.com
1. Tell us the story of how you began pole dancing.
I was first introduced to pole at an Aradia Fitness in Toronto, while living in the Muskokas. I was travelling into Toronto with a girl-friend to see Damien Rice perform, and on the drive in, she told me that we had to stop by this pole studio where a mutual friend had just started teaching. Apparently, the plan was to take her intro class before heading out for dinner, and then to the concert. My first thought was “I am NOT having it!” Never in a million years did I think I would be taking a pole class, not even for an hour. When I saw all the “shoes” on the shelves immediately as we walked into the studio, I almost turned around and walked right back out.
Despite reluctantly agreeing to participate, I remember after the warmup, during the CAT section of class, looking at my girlfriend and saying “I can’t wait to do this again”! That was in 2007, and I am still spinning around an Aradia pole!
2. You’ve been one of the longest standing instructors at Aradia. What keeps you going?
Yes, I am an Aradia Original Gangster! LOL. There are a many things that keep me going after all these years, but mostly, it is the sense of family and sisterhood I feel when I am at Aradia.
Be it fellow instructors or students, we share a unique passion for something that makes me feel very connected to them – kindred spirits if you will.
3. Tell us about Food For the Pole, how did you get interested in Nutrition? How does your program benefit pole dancers?
I first developed an interest in nutrition after my second baby was born. My sister was a competitive body builder and I was amazed at how her body transformed. At that time, I wasn’t interested in having a bikini physique, but rather, I just wanted to eat properly and feel good.
She started me on that path.
Eventually, I ended up taking a fitness and nutrition course just for fun, which lead to more and more courses and my own walk on stage for a Bikini/Figure Competition. While I was training for the bikini competition I realized how much stronger and more flexible I was. But, I wasn’t spending any more time in the gym or on the pole than I was prior, and so it clearly came down to my diet. It was astonishing how much my food choices contributed to my pole conditioning, especially in regards to flexibility. That’s when the idea hit me… food and pole!
As a pole dancer, flexibility can make or break your progress in the sport, and that is why I decided to start Food for the Pole. Proper nutrition is important in any sport. Learning how to fuel your body to hold an Iron X AND perform on stage for 4 minutes without extreme fatigue requires a step-by-step approach, and that’s where I help.
In addition to nutritionally coaching competitors, I work with everyday people who just want to learn how to properly balance a meal, or those looking to lose weight.
4. What is your favourite thing about pole dancing altogether?
My favourite thing about pole is definitely teaching! I love watching people fall in love with this sport, especially the ones who come into the studio with the same attitude I did so many years ago. I will never forget my first pole teacher, and I absolutely love being a part of other people’spole journey.
5. What do you find challenges you the most? You seem to have it all, the flexibility – the strength. Tell us, what challenges Rachelle.
I like to joke with my students that I have Pole Dyslexia… but, I am also sincere when I say it. I struggle a lot as a student myself. I am a slow learner, needing to see a move again, and again, and again… I need the move explained to me, and I need to feel the move. This is a real struggle when I am teaching myself things, or trying to figure out the latest IG fad move. With having a family, I don’t get as much time to hit the studio to practice with fellow instructors as I used to, so I have to rely on self-teaching, trial and error. My learning style is definitely my biggest challenge.
6. Where do you find your training inspiration from? Tell us about some of the workshops that you’ve taken previously!
I have so many people that inspire me, but I will keep the list as short as I can! My pole inspirations go back to the Original Gangsters of pole… Karol Helms, Alethea Austin, Jenyne Butterfly, Jamilla… they are the founders of pole as we know it. Respect always to these Goddesses!
I went to Stripcamp with LUX_ATL in 2016. This was memorable for me as it was a small group (just 3 of us). We stayed the weekend with her in her home, learning the art of performing and audience engagement. Having that intimate time with Lux allowed me to be raw and vulnerable, and she was able to tap into some of my pole insecurities. I had an “uh-huh” moment with her that makes Stripcamp very dear to my heart. If you make it to Stripcamp you will see my name on the bunkbed!
One of my most cherished pole inspirations is the one and only Marlo Fisken. She is hands-
down the coolest, most bad-ass person I have ever met. Her WTF (Work The Floor) workshops at Pole Expo are an absolute MUST! Marlo inspires me daily as an instructor. Aside from her being a dancer, a performer, and a pole dancer, she is simply one of the best teachers I have ever worked with! Marlo inspires me to be the best teacher I can be.
This past September, I was lucky enough to be behind the scenes of a video filming of a Cirque production in Vegas, directed by the one and only Jenyne Butterfly. I was able to see beyond the stage, beyond the dancers, and all the things that make a production a success. For me, there really is more than just an artist and a pole… so much heart goes into everything. This was so personal, because I put so much of my own heart into every part of pole, whether it is teaching, class planning, training other instructors, or choreography. I saw Jenyne’s heart and soul that day, and that left me with inspiration for a lifetime!
7. What advice could you give to someone who has been working through their pole journey at a slow pace – but they’re eager to move up quickly?
Hurry up and slow down! Don’t rush things that need time to grow! Everyone’s pole journey is their own, and we will all get to where we need to be when we need to be there.
8. Being a busy mom of 3, how do you find time to manage a household and dedicate time to health and fitness as well?
It all comes down to a very supportive husband, period. I couldn’t do what I do without him, and he couldn’t do what he does without me. We invest in ourselves so that we are able to take care of everything else. Taking care of ourselves is part of taking care of our kids; the only people responsible for turning them into happy, healthy adults, is us. We get up at 5am to workout, make mini-dates to the market, and meal-prep together. We are a team. Whatever it takes, we do it together. Well, except for pole – pole is mine!