Pole Levels – What They Are, Why We Have Them and How to Use Them to Level Up Your Pole Journey
By Lisa Bella and SweetCapri
* This blog post will be updated soon to more accurately represent our updated pole levels breakdown
Diversity in the pole community is something to celebrate. People from all different backgrounds, of all different body types and genders come to Soul Pole Dance & Fitness to share a love for pole. Just as these differences make each of us unique, our pole journeys will not look the same.
Because everyone’s journeys will look different, it is important to us that our students are happy with where they are while safely leveling up their skills. Safety is one of the main reasons we have class levels. This class level system helps us group students who are developing similar skills needed to progress to the next level in a way that is safe and efficient.
As an example, if a student who is still mastering the push and pull of a full bracket grip goes to a Level 4 class where they are working on handsprings, that student will not be able to attempt the moves with the rest of the class without risking injury.
It is easy to let ego get in the way of our pole progress. Each student is different and will progress at their own speed. Trying to jump ahead to higher levels and attempt moves we are not ready for can hurt our progress in the long run, as pole injuries can set us back months if not longer. As much as you can, try not to compare yourself to other students because we can only control the work we put into our own training. If we take a step back and do an honest assessment of our own strengths and weaknesses, it will be easier to find the pole class or classes that best fit our individual level.
What do we want you to take away from this blog post?:
Pole is not a linear journey. However, there is a somewhat linear sequence of moves that are, not only considered fundamental, but necessary to master in order to progress in your journey. The speed at which those fundamental moves are learned can be influenced by the individual’s background prior to pole (i.e., previous experience with weight training, yoga, dance, gymnastics, etc.). Pole requires us to develop so many different skills – both familiar and unfamiliar to us, therefore it is essential that we learn and master the fundamental skills at our own level first. It will make your progression to higher levels easier. Trust us.
Here’s a breakdown of our levels:
|Intro to Pole Basics
|Introduction to basic grips, moves, and spins.
|No experience necessary
|Pole Level 1
|Learning the building blocks of pole – pole climbs, basic spins, leg holds, basic combos, and other moves from the floor.
Begin conditioning for inverts.
|Intro to Pole Basics / Approval from instructor.
|Pole Level 2
|Increasing pole vocabulary.
Learning to invert and working on upside down and genie shapes.
|Pole Level 1 completion.
|Pole Level 3
|Increasing strength and flexibility needed to progress to moves with 2-3 points of contact.
|Solid, clean invert from the floor.
Solid inside and outside leg hook.
Pole Level 2 completion / Approval from instructor.
|Pole Level 4+
|Learn to cleanly execute more advanced transitions, moves, and combos up and down the pole.
|Solid inverts from the floor and aerially.
Strong inside and outside leg hook and hip holds.
Comfortable with transitions like leg switches.
Pole Level 3 completion / Approval of instructor
* Pre-requisite: means you should be able to do things listed in the previous level in order to start taking a class at the desired level.
* Classes offered in our booking system state any pre-requisites. Please be sure to read those before signing up! Detailed class descriptions can be found on this page.
Not sure what level you are? When in doubt, reach out to your instructors! They are always happy to help.
We hope you found this blog post helpful. Happy poling!