Sunday, 29 June 2008

I hate Motorways.

Well I am a little tired today so no doubt my grammar will be suitably poor. My husband and I returned from Greenwich at 2.45am, it was long day but was educational as always. We departed at 10am and I had every intention of buying some nice healthy food for the journey but as usual time did not seem to be on my side. I raced to Tj's sandwich bar to get a prawn and avocado sandwich on granary bread to keep me going for a while, it was breakfast / lunch and it was more than adequate.

As you can imagine a sandwich does not fill one up for the entire day and sooner or later my stomach started to grumble, we stopped at a motorway service station to peruse the menu. As most of you will know service stations are neither cheap nor particularly healthy. For the first time in several years I indulged in fast food!!! The spicy beanburger pictured left was not quite as bad as a thought it was going to be but was hot and was better than starving, I washed it down with a cup of green tea, peppermint and milk thistle in the hope that it would make the bean burger more nutritious (I somehowalways carry a few herbal tea bags in my handbag as motorway service stations will usually give you a cup of boiling water for nothing!). My husband and one of his fighters Mick Kileen (pictured left found time to try the slightly disturbing massage chairs. The chairs are meant to be relaxing yet feel more like someone is jabbing you in the back and neck with a small stick.

The Spicy beanburger was actually a bit of a god send because when we arrived at the venue, Kidbrooke School in Greenwich, there was a very limited amount of food on offer although I have to give credit to the school for the way they looked after us and they managed to offer fresh apples and bananas for sale. I ventured to the local co-op which turned out to be quite a scary experience. Remember this is inner city London, you could have cut the atmosphere in the supermarket with a knife, in fact I worried that a knife may be about to be the exact object in question. A polite man behind the counter was trying to explain to a young man (By just calling him a man I am being extremely polite) that he needed ID to buy alcohol, the 'man' started shouting and swearing trying to intimidate the poor member of staff, I though that the situation was going to escalate but it didn't. Then the next customer was equally abusive to the cashier over the price of sweets for his children. I really wanted to say something but didn't want to aggravate things further. Instead I was just over friendly to the cashier and smiled and made conversation which was not reciprocated. I do worry about the road our society seems to be travelling down, I found this article written in 2003 which highlights few of my concerns.

I returned to the venue happy to be away from said supermarket. I will report fully on the fight night when I get some pictures, it was a very interesting night with lots of memories. It was also strange to be in an inner city London classroom surrounded by GCSE course work and battered filing cabinets, not the usual venue for a fight night.

The journey back was very laborious, 4 and a half hours of motorway, I stayed awake throughout trying to make sure my husband was not too tired to drive but he seemed fine and was far more alert than me.

Nixi and Jo have updated their blogs and Rosanna will be adding pictures to her blog soon from May's Run to the Sun event.

orry to cut this blog short but I have just found out that one of my mum's best friends died yesterday, Sue was a lovely woman of whom I have very fond memories. As a young girl I spent many nights with Sue and her family and her lovely three sons. My mum is on her way down to see me so I will stop writing for now and write some more on Wednesday. As I sign off I can hear the sound of guns in the back ground, they are sounding for national Veterans day giving us a chance to remember those who have fought in wars across the world. My thoughts also go out to the families of the soldiers killed n Afghanistan in the past 24 hours.

Stay healthy,

Sam x

Friday, 27 June 2008

Good Health resumes

I'm back on the road to recovery and have beaten the nasty bug! it is great to wake up and not feel like death however my cat did not share my good mood and seems to have been temporarily possessed by the devil, this is quite a normal state of mind for my cat, I think she is feeling like the picture.

I wanted to discuss a recent comment that was left on one of my youtube videos that has upset me quite lot. Click here to view the video and see the comments. The lady concerned is basically saying that I am not a pole dancer and what I do is not art. She chose to describe me as an acrobat(don't have a problem with that bit) and said that I am definitely not a dancer (do have a problem with that bit). her comments got me thinking, I know that everyone is entitled to their opinion but I felt her comments were just hurtful. I have some more to say on this matter but am waiting for a response from her teacher first.

Good news for art of dance students, my Dad's garage, White's Auto Centre , has agreed to give all art of dance students 10% off any services or repairs they have done at the garage. All you need to do is turn up and say that you are an art of dance student! As well as offering the discount my dad has offered his forecourt as a venue for our September fun day to raise money for the Anthony Nolan trust. The event will be held on September 13th - full details to follow.

Tomorrow I am off to London with two fighters from Saints and my husband of course. Hopefully I will be reporting on two wins on Sunday after our return. Monday will not be a blogging day as Jo and I filming a World Class Instructional Pole dancing DVD so will be suitably bruised and battered by Monday evening.

Well now it is time for me to man reception, Rosanna is teaching tonight and we have hen party coming in later too! I have also received a load of new stock for my shop so will be sorting that out tonight. No peace for the wicked.

Stay healthy,

Sam x

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Pole star ill tsar

I have my husband's virus and feel like poo, today's events have not enhanced my illness. Firstly it is that time of the month when a woman does not feel at her best and to add to the situation my PC displayed the 'blue screen of death' indicating there was a problem with my hard drive. As I only have the software for the back up hard drive on my broken PC I could not access the back up files either. Luckily Fabrice from NRG telecom came to my aid and restored computer normality whilst laughing at my fear of losing all my files. It is scary how reliant my business has become on e-mails and the Internet.

I have to report that the moon cup (pictured top left) I referred to in previous blogs is simply brilliant, no leaks, no discomfort, no nasty tampons. I cannot praise the moon cup highly enough. I received confirmation of the art of dances attendance at the forthcoming Devon Car show to be held on Sunday 27th July at the Newton Abbot Racecourse. The art of dance instructors will be performing throughout the day as well as having a go at Sumo wrestling in big inflatable suits of course!). Let's hope we get some good weather.

For pictures and info on Glamour Puss's fire walk just click here or here. Despite feeling unwell I managed 30 minutes on the pole with Jo & Rosanna, My strength was a little below par but I still manged to get through my entire tricks training routine apart from my elbow hold handstands. I am looking forward to returning to full fitness asap.

I am now off to wallow in my illness with my husband who is not feeling much better either.

Stay Healthy,

Sam x

Saturday, 21 June 2008

A great night.

It is now 3.15am and I have just returned from performing at Club Vanilla. My Husband and I left at 8.20pm expecting to arrive at the venue at about 10pm but thanks to Google maps we took several wrong turns, this was not helped by severe fog and rain! At 10.50pm we arrived at Club Vanilla and I was pleasantly surprised at the surroundings, I was warmly greeted by Jenny the organiser and shown to my changing room, within a few minutes I had done my first 8 minute set, I danced to Kelis -'Good Stuff' and Kylie - 'red blooded woman' mainly because they were on the first CD I picked out of my bag and they were next to each other on the CD. The spectators fell silent before erupting into applause when I finished my first set.

Jenny explained that they were expecting a podium dancer who could do a few bits on the pole but none of them had ever seen 21st Century fitness pole dancing. I just love taking pole dancing to a new audience. Jenny and I chatted abut the stigmas that pole dancing can have and she commented on the stigma of running a swingers club, apparently the local press have given her a very hard time and local parishioners have apparently been praying to cleanse her of her sins.

Anyway, back to the pole, it was a 50mm stainless steel pole - my favourite, I was a bit limited by the height, only 8 foot, but managed to use the t-bar structure at the top to do some interesting variations such as a chin up then drop the the Bat. In total I did 7 sets with 4 costume changes. What made things really tough was the heat, I sweated buckets and did an unintentional shoulder mount death drop - not one to try at home.

If you are going to try a swinging club then this is the place to go, Sid and I didn't partake in any of the sexual experimentation going on in the private rooms but did enjoy the friendly relaxed atmosphere and great DJ. The club also boasts two fantastic Jacuzzis one of which is right next to the pole. It is unusual to be dancing whilst a half naked person bathes beside you. I have been booked for the next party and am looking forward to my return. It was so nice to have the opportunity to perform without the usual pressures and to see what moves I could manage in the extreme heat.

A great night was had by all and I managed to pull two Panthera spin and snaps out of the bag. The only downside, apart from the travelling, was the nasty nylon carpet around the base of the pole, I have severe carpet burns and my right toe is still bleeding. I would like to thank my husband for accompanying me tonight despite the fact that he was feeling a little under the weather. I think that both Sid & I will sleep extremely well tonight.

Stay Healthy,

Sam x

Pending Performance

Pictured left is the stage that I will be dancing on tonight at Club Vanilla, I have just noticed on the club Vanilla website that there will be an exotic floor show part way through the evening, I just hope that they are not expecting me to do it! I will get Sid to take some pictures anyway and will report back to you, should be an interesting evening!

It is looking like me and my other instructors may be exhibiting at the Devon car Show on the 27th July, I will let you know times and dates as soon as we have the Event confirmed.

Other Forthcoming events include a Pole Perfection class with resident Burlesque instructor Georgina Gale . If any of you saw Georgina dance at our last Social at Annabel's then this class will need no explaining but for those of you who missed it Georgina will be showing you how to slow down your tricks and improve your overall performance on the pole, think grace and fluidity.

Our incredibly bendy instructor Nixi will be doing a Flexibility workshop on Sunday 29th June at 12:00. This workshop is non pole based and will aim to help you increase your overall flexibility through some demanding stretches.

On Monday I hope to secure a new art of dance venue in Torquay, I am meeting with the owner of the proposed venue to finalise details so will let you know what happens, we are also looking for an Exeter venue for Georginas Burlesque workshops, we have had some fantastic feedback on the last workshop but need to find another venue.

I had a great training session with Hayley, Nixi, Sue & Rose (Sue's daughter) yesterday but am staying off the pole today to conserve my energy for tonight's performance. I was chuffed to manage some more one handed handstands yesterday as well as some improved shoulder mount techniques, unfortunately I seem to be missing a certain amount of skin from my right collarbone so will have to be careful tonight.

Congratulations to Glamour Puss who successfully completed her walking on fire task, I will link to her blog when she updates it with details of her fantastic piece of work for the hearing dogs Charity. More news to follow on Thai fighter Christi Campbell and our designated Charity The Anthony Nolan trust.

Stay healthy,

Sam x

Thursday, 19 June 2008

Setting a bad example

OK, so this is not going to be a blog full of health and fitness advise due to the fact that I drank far too much last night, I spent the evening in the Navy pub drinking St Austell Tribute and then moved to the Dolphin Pub where I consumed some gorgeous pints of Bass (trust me if you are going to drink Bass then this is the place to drink it!). The Dolphin Pub is a proper no frills pub for real people and was a favourite haunt of the late artist Beryl Cook see picture left.

Foolishly I forgot I had a spinning pole lesson today at 2pm which is never a good idea on a hangover but it serves me right. After the spinning pole session I did an hours yoga and now have some more pole practice to do before going out for hair of the dog and curry night at Raffles followed by the Quiz night at the Woodside. Healthy living will resume very shortly promise.

I want to wish Glamour Puss all the best for tomorrow when she attempts to walk on fire! Rather her than me.

Also an update on my cousin Val who has just sent me this comment pointing out that she was not in Jordan but was living in Beirut: "
I actually moved from Jordan to Lebanon in April, so the violence and evacuation all happened in Beirut. The situation in Lebanon was really terrible for a few days, but I was fortunate that I was able to get out. I happened to be caught on some of the most heavily targeted streets at the time Hezbollah took over West Beirut. I am glad that I got out safely, but very bummed about the fact that I am no longer living there. Granted it had only been a month, but I was really excited about living there. Beirut is such a beautiful city!, and I had already started making friends, had applied to grad school, and was just getting settled into my apartment. Leaving was really difficult...I had my entire apartment furnished, all of my clothes, books, etc and I just left them all when I evacuated with one suitcase. Now the situation there is "tensely stable" but in all likelihood the violence will erupt again in the fall. Therefore, my work took the decision not to send me back and I will be based in DC again for the foreseeable future. This is not so bad of course, but it wasn't my ideal. I'll be heading back to Beirut in about two weeks to pick up my clothes, close my bank account, all is not lost :-)" I am looking forward to Val's pending visit in August and am glad that she is safe.

One bit of health news that I thought may interest you is the current database
of activity providers in Plymouth, the idea has been set up by Plymouth Guild to help their active for life project. The data base is a work in progress so if you run a physical activity in Plymouth you can contact the guild to add your details onto the database or you can simply use it to find activities to participate in.

News to follow on some masterclasses, check out the video footage of Rosanna's last sequencing class.

Off to nurse my hangover,

Stay healthier than me,

Sam x

Monday, 16 June 2008

Help needed

I had a fascinating meeting today with staff at the Plymouth Family Support Services centre based at Kinterbury House. The Family Support centre provides an amazing array of services to families across Plymouth, they give counselling, provide volunteer befrienders for people who may be isolated or need support in the community, they provide adoptions support services, the list is endless and I think their work is really undervalued. Much of their work is aimed at preventative measures and will help to stop people from developing more serious issues such as depression, addiction and ultimately suicide, by supporting families they are also reducing the number of children that need to be taken into care as well as being able to recognise children who are at risk in their own homes.

As well as supporting local families the Family Support Centre also provides child protection training to various sectors . I have summed their work up in a few paragraphs but have only scratched the service of how much they actually do.

The PFSS was set up as a local charity in 1999 and has been operating ever since. Unfortunately this year their building was bought by a new owner who decided to increase their rent by 50%, the knock on effect of this and other soaring costs have made it increasingly difficult for the PFSS to survive, In addition to this they are getting an increased demand for their services due to rising poverty, anti Social behaviour, unemployment and other such issues.

SO Why I am blogging about this today, Obviously anyone can donate to this worthwhile charity but more importantly we are trying to get people to buy tickets for their forthcoming Charity night at The Waterfront. Tickets cost £15 and include a buffet and entertainment, Local celebrity, model and singer Angel Flukes will be singing at the event and there will be a DJ, the raffle already has some great prizes including a Quad Bike and signed Arsenal Shirt.

You can buy your tickets from the PFSS or you can donate to them by clicking here. Please support this wonderful charity in any way that you can. The PFSS will be our next designated charity, let's work together to keep this fantastic charity working in Plymouth.

As promised here is the information on the mists of time trapeze classes that I blogged about yesterday:
class details: adult (16+ish) static trapeze, Thursday 7-8pm, £3.50, Salisbury road baptist church.
children's classes: 5-6 & 6-7pm, there is currently a waiting list for children.
equipment: static trapezes, corde lisse (rope), aerial silks, rings. circus skills-just for fun(spinning plates, diabolo, poi, juggling balls etc.)
description: quite informal sessions, everybody working together and learning from each other.

More news to follow,

Stay Healthy,

Sam x

Friday, 13 June 2008

Trapeze classes.

Before I tell you all about the Mists of time trapeze classes I must give you some feedback from Friday night at Lux Park, it was simply brilliant.

I had 11 kids all of about 15 years old, they arrived at Lux Park at about 7.30pm with Fiona the appropriate adult ( I always insist on having an appropriate adult as I am not CRB checked, still trying to get some grant funding so I can get all my staff CRB checked but at present the cheapest courses I can find are about £80 each, then times that by 7 instructors and two receptionists and it is no small sum!).

Anyway 1 of the kids decided that she didn't want to join in and when asked replied that she couldn't be bothered, I didn't hassle her but did explain that if she didn't join in from the start he could not change her mind halfway through, the girl explained that she just wanted to watch her sister to see how she got on. The 10 girls worked like Trojans and achieved some brilliant crucifix poses and headstands including some headstand sit ups. At the end of the session one of the girls shouted out 'Thank you for coming' and then the other girls chimed in with their gratitude, they also asked when I was coming back, I was thrilled that they had got so much out of the session, the two sisters stayed behind and watched me take the poles out and bombarded me with questions about pole dancing. I drove home feeling very smug about the session, the girls were so polite and well behaved I almost wondered whether I had taught the wrong group, they have better social skills than some adults I know.

As promised here is some info about the trapeze classes that are held weekly at Salisbury Road Church in St Jude's every Thursday evening. One of my students Elly Cribbens has been teaching trapeze there along with organiser Rhys Thomas of mists of time. I do not have any contact details at present but will post some in the next few days.

AmyTree and Dolly went to check out the trapeze class for themselves and this is the report I got back from Dolly on Friday "Having been under the expert tuition of Art of Dance for a year and a half, and having recently tried the new gymnastic rings which have been installed in the studio, I was excited to see if I could transfer any of my 'pole skills' to another discipline. On arrival there were several children and young people receiving tuition from Elly, and they were clearly much more bendy and fearless than me! We were taken through a warm-up which was very similar to preparation for a pole workout, then Elly took us through some beginner moves on the trapeze and ropes. Although I spend a good deal of time on the pole hanging upside down, the feeling of hanging by the back of my knees from a horizontal bar with nothing but air beneath me was very different - and strangely reminiscent of playground antics! Elly was a patient and inspiring tutor - her skills on the trapeze and her ability to toe-climb the rope faster than I can shimmy up a pole were impressive and really made me want to come back for more. I now have a completely new collection of bruises, and am already planning routines in my head that it will probably take much longer than I expect to master - all in all a very positive start!"

So all sounds very positive, if you are interested in trying trapeze for your self then watch this space for full details of days, times and prices........

Other news to report is the recent update from Nixi about what she has been up to lately and news on sports bras: My Mum and I did a spot of retail therapy yesterday afternoon although in hindsight neither of us were feeling like walking around town, my um has injured her knee and the muscles in my shoulder girdle are not happy, however we mad the most of it and I know have 5 new sports bras. When you teach a lot you need plenty of kit and a few of my old sports bras had seen better days, If any of you are thinking of purchasing a new sports bra then check out TK Maxx as they had a range of Berlei shock absorbers, my personal favourites for just £6.99, they normally retail at about £24.99. When jumping up[ and down on the pole a good sports bra really is an essential bit of kit.

My Mum bought me a beautiful turquoise bra set from M & S, I plan to wear to for my forthcoming event next Saturday so will try to get some pictures as it is absolutely stunning.

Lastly a big Whinge to Plymouth City Councils street cleansing department, they failed to collect mine and my neighbours bins on Friday morning despite manging to do the rest of the street, After a phone call to the council (think holding system: "You are now in a queue, you are 7th in the queue" etc) I was assured that the bins would be collected same day and the rubbish left from the earlier collections would be cleansed. Saturday did see the removal of my bins, they were a day late and had this been my error I would have been fined but as it is the councils fault no-one seems to want to take responsibility, the mess is still there, my street is strewn with empty plastic bottles and other debris from the bungled recycling collection. It is a disgrace and does not make me proud of my street or council, if anyone from the council is reading this I do have photos of how my street looked after the bin men had been and it is not pretty. What is so wrong is that my neighbours and I have bothered to put our bins out as requested, domestic waste neatly displayed in brown bags and recycling in the correct green containers, due to the slap dash way in which the green containers were emptied much of the rubbish was left on the street so now the council have to pay someone to come round and clean up and no doubt the items will be treated as rubbish and not recycling, why do we bother?

Off to cook a smoked salmon, mushroom and poached egg breakfast with soya and linseed toast for mum and I before popping up to See Jo (may attempt the death lay if my shoulders allow), then of to see my Nana & grandpa then off to a BBQ at my Dad's.

Stay healthy,

Sam x

Friday 13th!

Friday 13th tends to be a good day for me and today is no exception, I am off to Lux Park Leisure centre to teach 9 young ladies tonight as part of the Caradon District Council your group, the scheme is designed to keep young girls of the streets and to get them motivated. The last session I did at Lux Park was brilliant and I am really looking forward to returning tonight.

After my dithering over whether or not to enter the nationals I am now in the process of entering two national competitions, Miss Pole dance UK organised by Pole Passion and Pole Divas (picture left taken at last years finals) organised by Pole-Tastic and Pole-Play. To combat my performance nerves I am trying to cram in as many public performance as possible before the qualifying heats.

My first performance will next Saturday 20th June at Club Vanilla in Barnstaple, Club Vanilla is a swingers club that organised parties on a monthly basis and books performers to entertain its guests, I know this may not seem in keeping with my portrayal of pole dancing in the fitness industry but I feel that the performance will be good practice for me and will also allow me to take world class pole dancing to a different audience.

July 18th will see me dancing at Raffles bar to raise money for St Luke's Hospice, more details to follow soon.

This afternoon I am practicing with Hayley which I am really looking forward to. I must hassle her and the rest of my instructors to update their blogs more regularly!!

I will blog more over the weekend about Amytree and the trapeze class she attended on Thursday, I am told she has rope burns on her ankles! I will also blog about our pending Parkour session and our new ethical company policy.

I must say how pleased I was today to read Jo's blog, I couldn't have put it better myself. Thanks Jo x

Lastly Good luck to my husband and his two fighters, Frank & Paul from Saints Gym, who will be fighting at an event in Sicily over the weekend. I will let you know how they get on.

Stay Healthy,

Sam x

Wednesday, 11 June 2008


At long last we seem to be having a summer although the weather does seem to be excellent when I am working and less good on my days off. I managed 35 mins on the pole today, practicing my ridiculous new training programme, but the heat got the better of me. Once your palms sweat profusely the pole becomes a dangerous place and the skin abrasion feels twice as bad on a hot day. It didn't help that whilst attempting Panthera's spin and snap I forgot to lock with the back of my knee and feel to the floor at speed in a crumpled mess, what was I thinking? Anyway all was fine, no injuries.

I have started watching a bit of Euro 2008, still disgraced that England did not make it through. I used to watch a lot of football but have watched less of late, I would like Portugal to win and France to come Second!

It will be a short blog today as it is my night off (got home at half seven because evil Jo had booked me to do reception, you just can't get the staff these days!- Only joking). I am looking forward to an hour of Eastenders and a few glasses of St Austell Proper Job (pictured top left).

News to follow on a Plymouth Trapeze class that is about to be sampled by Miss Amy Tree & Dolly, have fun ladies.

Stay Healthy,

Sam x

Monday, 9 June 2008

My cousin is safe.

I had the shocking news last night that my cousin Val had been involved in some kind of scare whilst working in Jordan. The news was particularly interesting in light of my recent concerns over whether I would be safe to work in Pakistan. For those of you were at my wedding you would know how lovely Val is, she is my American cousin and she works for a non governmental organisation helping communities improve their media relations and capabilities with projects such as internews.

Val has been living in Jordan for a few months now and still hopes to be able to return to continue the valuable work she does there. Apparently she was seized in the midnight hours by security forces and evacuated immediately being flown out of the country and back to the US. All I really know is that she is safe and that is great news to me.

Other news today of less topical importance is how well my training session went with Jo, both of us are working hard to perfect new moves and new combinations. I managed an elbow hold Aysha, a move which has proved very elusive and yet should be easier than the Parallel handstand version of the Aysha that I can already do. I also managed a one handed handstand although this move is far from perfect, it does mean that I can now attempt the scary looking Spin and Snap made famous by Panthera. Other moves Jo and I worked on were some shoulder mount combinations, figurehead to shoulder mounts and general syllabus revision. Jo also found time to write some evil new session plans to keep the students on their toes.

I thought I would feel weak today after Saturday's masterclass but all seems fine in the muscle department, the heat does not help one's pole dance practice but Jo and I battled on regardless. I hope to catch up with my other instructors soon to swap ideas.

The masterclasses on Saturday went really well, Well done to the Sarah, Mia & Rosanna for lasting through all three!

Lastly a big "Get Well Soon" to my Mum who has been suffering from some nasty flu type virus - Hope you feel better very soon and look forward to seeing you at the weekend x x. More blogs soon,

Stay Healthy,

Sam x

Friday, 6 June 2008

Today I bought 12 tickets to see Flashdance The Musical at the Theatre Royal. Thanks to Holly Hardy, one of our lovely students, from the Theatre Royal for reserving the tickets for us and making sure we have great seats! Myself, most of my staff and my mum will be attending the performance on 25th July and I can't wait.

Yesterdays yoga session with local teacher Claire Nash was fantastic although it brought home just how battered my body is at the moment. My general strength has been particularly low at the moment with lots of aches, pains and muscle tightness. I though that much of the problem stemmed from my notoriously weak hamstrings but during the yoga session I realised that my calf muscles were also not as flexible as they should be. I also noticed a serious imbalance between the right side of my body and my left side. My left side is far more flexible than my right. The lesson learned is that pole dancing is a high impact sport and unless I keep up regular yoga sessions and the odd visit for a sports massage I am going to be damaging my body. Jo & I have booked Claire for another private session next Thursday which I am thoroughly looking forward to.

Rosanna & I have been invited to dance at an event in Pakistan but am having serious doubts about whether to accept the contract or not. The artist management company who are organising the event are established and trusted within the industry and I have done similar events before but my concerns lie with fears for my safety whilst in Pakistan.
The Foreign and commonwealth office advise against travel to parts of Pakistan but not all areas so I am seeking further advice as to whether I should travel or not.

After two hours of teaching spinning pole I am lucky enough to be out with the wonderful AmyTree and the Dude. I will get to see the Dudes karaoke talent in the flesh as well as enjoying a curry (Sri Lankan Prawn) and a pint deal for £5 at raffles bar. I hope that my victims, oops sorry I meant students, are prepared for my masterclass tomorrow.
Stay Healthy,
Sam x

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Food news

I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Leigh's Farm shop at Roborough has just gained a contract to supply a chain of London pubs with a huge order of farm made gourmet beefburgers in addition to this Leigh's farm have been nominated for uktv food hero award, I have just voted for them. For those of you who haven't visited the farm shop at Roborough it has a great range of local produce from fresh veg to breads, meats and dairy products. I couldn't resist the temptation to try their new cheese bread which was absolutely divine and very fresh, the bread was equally nice toasted with breakfast the following morning.

I would like to thank my husband for all his hard work during the last two weeks, my new aviary is more or less finished and the aviary extension looks fabulous, my remaining flock of birds are more than happy in their new home and I hope that they will have some new friends arriving soon. My husband is now working on painting the back of the house and building a fabulous built-in BBQ so we can enjoy the summer evenings to the full. Thank you Sid x.

Some of you may have read the news that Plymouth is the fifth happiest place in Britain! I am not sure how people work out these statistics but Martin Freeman has some great noes on the subject, you can read his
weekly column here.

and I have been feeling very tired today and we are both looking forward to our private
yoga session tomorrow afternoon, Sue will be joining us too and hopefully the session will invigorate my muscles ready for my evil pole dancing master class on Saturday where I will be putting my victims through their paces.
More news to follow,

Stay Healthy,

Sam x

Sunday, 1 June 2008

The morning after.

The night out at Annabel's started wonderfully and everyone gave great performances, that is apart from me, my sweaty palms got the better of me again and I failed to achieve any parallel handstands as well as nearly falling out of my new trick which still has no name (I will post a picture in the week and try to get a name for the trick too!). Jo danced second and put on a beautiful performance to Berlin - Take my breath away (song thief!!), she , like me, found the pole quite slippy but it didn't reflect in her performance. Next up was Hayley who has clearly advanced dramatically since I last saw her dance, her strength and flow were superb and she also oozed sex appeal whilst dancing to Ain't no other man by Christina Aguilera.

Next up was Nixi who had just returned from London where she and the rest of the UPPDC entered Eggheads, Nixi can't tell me how it went yet but she was smiling from ear to ear so things can't have gone too badly, I will try to find out when the programme is being aired. Nixi, flexible as ever performed a cheeky little routine to a song called black and gold and managed to sneak in some bottom gyration / body waves during a V-leg shoulder mount, I think Chris (Nixi's other half) videoed Nixi's performance so will try to get a copy to share with you later.

I must have words with Mr Turpin for not bringing his video camera as promised, I think I will get Jo to give him a serious spanking during the week on my behalf!

Next up was Mia, I was expecting Mia to be good but not that good, my god the girl performed her heart out with a stunning performance ending in a fantastic extended butterfly - Go Girl!

Tamar followed Mia and her performance was equally stunning, Tamar's style has improved so much since the Birthday bash last year, she had a great choice of song and included a brilliant knee conditioning trick in her routine. I was so proud of her and Mia for doing the art of dance proud.

The penultimate showcase came from Neil Bunting, husband of lovely student Sarah and father of another lovely student Sarah (junior). Neil bravely removed his top in front of many screaming ladies and then demonstrated the flag (half mast) and shoulder mount - very strong, very impressive. I must add that the Buntings are now definitely a pole dancing family, 8 year old Amy joined my class on Tuesday night along with her mum and Neil has agreed to attend my forthcoming Chinese pole workshop (dates to be announced).

The finale was performed by the beautiful and sensual Georgina Gale aka Sue, Sue did a Pole / Burlesque performance to Parisienne walk by Gary Moore and wowed us all. My husband commented that Sue's performance was particularly stimulating (N.B. personal joke between me, Sue and my husband!)and we were all cheering and clapping throughout. I really don't think Sue realises quite how good she really is.

I am going to invite all the performers into the studio to video their performances as they were simply too good to miss.

I was just about to dance again when Sarah pointed out that bits were flaking of the ceiling, I looked up to see the dome of the x-pole receding into the ceiling! Poor Annabel looked like she wasn't having the best night already and didn't need me running downstairs announcing that my pole had just gone through the ceiling of her club! She sent me a reassuring text later but I still felt awful. I had been advised by one of her staff to put the pole in place and was assured that there was a strong joist in situ. Anyway, the night ended rather abruptly but thank you to all the students and their friends and families for turning up and being a great crowd.

I woke this morning to view my new stigmata, for those of you who don't pole dance you will have no idea what I am talking about. Pole dancers often have bits of skin missing from their feet and both my feet have little red scabs on them this morning from pole abrasion. Despite the stigmata I have no bruises.

My last comment for today is news of a new pole school opening within 2 miles of my studio, my initial reaction was quite negative but competition can be a good thing and I also know how hard it is to get a business to work, Another city gym are already struggling to make their pole classes work so it will be interesting to see how my new competitor gets on. What competition does do is to motivate me so be prepared for a more determined me rushing about this week and generally by very productive. Bring on the competition!

Must be time or me to have a bath and nip of to the farm shop followed by lunch with my family to celebrate my grandads 85th birthday celebration. Oh and thanks to the seagulls (picture top left) for posing so beautifully in front of the wedding cake (pictured below right- picture courtesy of on Plymouth Hoe.

Stay Healthy,

Sam x