When In Manila, learn the art of Pole Dancing with the Philippine’s pioneer, Ed Aniel of Pole Academy Philippines.
Ed Aniel is the founder of Pole AcademyPhilippines who started to learn the art of pole in 2004. Through various background in dance, theater, television and production, Ed sought for greater challenges ahead. Ed started to recognize the rising interest in pole dancing abroad and its soulful benefits so Ed decided to introduce this as a form of exercise in the Philippines and since then, Pole Dancing has evolved.
Evolution of Pole Dancing in the Philippines
In the beginning, Ed packaged the pole dancing classes as a form of exercise. With the stigma of Pole Dancing as constricted to the image of bars and clubs, Ed needed to put much effort to introduce pole dancing as a fitness regime. Eventually, he started inviting his dance friends to his pole classes which evolved into a more serious dance class based on his original curriculum, Jazz le Pole, and thereby since, unlocking the inner gods and goddesses of many of his students. The popularity of pole dancing grew and now, thanks to the efforts of the pole community, pole dancing is now widely acceptable as a form of exercise, fitness regime and even performance art.
Now, there are a lot of pole studios offering pole fitness. From one person on the pole, now there are doubles, group pole dancing, sometimes they even hop from one pole to another. The pole evolved from static to spinning on its own. Now, there are also men enjoying the art of pole dancing.
Going Beyond the Acrobatics
As for Pole Academy Philippines., their classes have evolved from a pure fitness regime to graceful dance and art. They want to go beyond the acrobatics of pole and master grace, fluidity and transitions. In the nine years Ed has been teaching pole, he has added flavor to it and through dance, theater and art. They are now focused on dance because they believe that in the process of doing this, you’ll definitely get fit anyway.
Keeping the Pole Passion Alive
Eisa Jocson, Associate Director and Senior Instructor of Pole Academy, has been pole dancing for 6 years. Eisa was one of the first students of Ed. She tried pole dancing because of her aunt and fell in love with it. She was still in college back then and now, after 6 years, she’s been teaching at Pole Academy Philippines.
They’ve been doing this for a while now, but they still have a lot more to learn.
“Pole dancing is like a tree. Once you plant it, you’re gonna grow and grow. Mamumunga ka ng mamumunga (You’re going to bear fruits). So even after 6 or 8 years of dancing, you still have a lot to learn.” says Ed.
“Creativity doesn’t run dry.” adds Eisa. “As you go further into the art of pole dancing, pahirap ng pahirap, paganda ng paganda (It gets harder and harder, but it gets more beautiful.)”
Ed also encourages his students who have been taking their classes to morph into their own style and catch their own rhythm. He said that music is one of the main motivators on why his students dance. Pole dancing is still a dance after all.
Geri Gil, managing director and student of Pole Academy Philippines, also added that women in Manila are challenged by Pole dancing. Those who have tried it have definitely benefited from the craft. If years ago, pole dancing is taboo, those who tried it are happy that they did take on the challenge, that they are able to do things they think they couldn’t do at first.
And to those who have A LOT of reasons NOT TO TRY Pole Dancing
Many women are concerned that they are not strong enough, that they’re not flexible, overweight, don’t have any dance background or no time to fit in their schedule.
Here is Ed Aniel’s response, “Don’t say anything unless you try it.” He added that there’s a difference to seeing it and thinking you couldn’t do it and ACTUALLY trying it.
Their classes include strengthening, flexibility and toning exercises depending on their level. They offer beginners and intermediates class, designed to fit the different levels of their students. Eisa also pointed out that a lot of their students who are now in the intermediate class didn’t have any dance background at all. There’s strengthening for the grip, strengthening for thighs and definitely, muscle memory is an amazing thing. This is how our bodies learn to progress so Ed definitely encourages everyone, from all walks of life, to try their class.
“Just come to our class, and let’s have fun.”
Take a peek into their Intermediate Class
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Arts in the City (ATC)
26th St cor 7th Avenue
Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
Telephone: (02) 3992211
More photos on the next page
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