Instagram is the largest worldwide pole dance resource available free of charge. It connects dancers to other polers, studios, workshops, training camps, conventions, showcases, and competitions across the globe. While Facebook, and YouTube are both excellent resources, Instagram has blown up over the past several years and covers “all the things” in one setting. Instagram is also a vital source for pole world news and updates such as the latest new pole move, shape, or variation. It is a resource that can be used to research techniques, conditioning exercises, and alternate variations, entries and exits of a particular skill. Many pole dancers use Instagram to display clips and photos from large competitions and showcases throughout the year, as well as progress videos and post just for fun. Polers challenge each other through Instagram to improve or work on specific skills through monthly challenges often sponsored by pole companies and are promoted by a well known “pole star.” Instagram is pretty much the online Mecca of the pole world.
Updates to the app over the past couple of years have provided more ways to store your favorite posts for reference during practice time. Finding out how to make Instagram work for you can make routine building and your pole journey in general a bit more organized, if that is your intention. In the past, saving items for reference involved “Liking” or “Double Tapping” a photo. In order to view saved posts, one would go through multiple settings options to get to the “Posts I’ve Liked” page. The aforementioned page was grossly unorganized despite being in chronological order of the posts liked; especially if one’s pole and non-pole instagram were one in the same.
Luckily the “Collections” option is now available, which allows you to save posts to a specific collection which makes for a neat and tidy page right next to the more general “Saved” tab. Upon injuring my ankle for the umpteenth time in May, I discovered that an entire routine could be built using this feature. Over time, I started several different collections relative to pole such as: Northeast 2017, Mounts, Dismounts, Floorwork, Flexy, Strength, Dynamic, Pretty Pretty, Conditioning, Music, and Costumes. I then went into my “Saved” posts, and “Posts I’ve Liked” and assigned these posts to their respective categories. Another feature called “See more like this” located at the bottom of the any Collections page, leads to more pole inspiration in relation to what is saved within the Collection.
As the next competition date grew near (About 3-4 months out), I pulled from my own as well as other IG pages and compiled them into the Northeast 2017 Collection. I even pulled in costume ideas from my Costumes collection. This created a one stop shop to look at everything I would want in my routine. Not only is it is organized, but I can easily look at how well my routine is balanced (Flexibility, Strength, Dynamic Moves, Floorwork). The next step I took was to play my song while looking at the combos within my collection. I muted my Instagram collection posts so that I could see and hear how they would flow with the music. Musicality is very important to me so this was a good way to visualize how I might highlight certain beats within the music. Another option is to download the app “InShot” which would allow for music (at any point in the song) to be laid over video- this is a good option for those who don’t want to play back and forth between the computer and your phone or tablet.
Instagram is a great resource for both veteran polers as well as those just starting out on their pole journey. I especially encourage those just starting out to create a page, even if it is kept on private so that you may track your progress. It is motivating to see the difference from when you first began as well as to see where the “pole stars” first started, whenever you might feel discouraged. Working smarter and not harder seems to be the thing to do these days, so why not use Instagram to work for you?
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