There is a lot of controversy over the link between pole dancing and erotic dance. I touched on this in an earlier post where I made the contrast between aggressive and assertive. In economics there is a saying, "There are no free lunches." Guess what? The same goes for pole dancing in our culture.
If you make your dance overtly sexual you are going to have to be ready to pay the price. No one is going to erase the Judeo-Christian ethic from Western Civilization by the use of the words "female empowerment". In fact if you talk to the men who pole dance at the gay clubs you will find that they are just as victimized by the "slut" word as the women who pole dance.
Let's face it, there are two ways that we can move our bodies on the pole. Articulation is uni-sexual. If you doubt me go to a gay club and watch the men dance. When women and men dance our movements can be a super set of the natural movements that we make in our every day lives flowing to music. On the other hand our movements can emphasize our genitals and mimic the movements of intercourse.
Baryshnikov isn't sexy because he grinds his hips. He is sexy because he has a beautiful body and the way he moves accentuates the power and grace that makes men sexually attractive. The same is true for some of the great hockey players. If you ever get a chance to watch video of former Boston Bruins defensemen Ray Bourque skate you will also see the power of testosterone in full hockey pads. On the female side of the fence look at the way JK dances.
I'm not a prude. I'm a recovering Catholic *smile* who embraces his inner slut. I am a sexual being. I am also a realist. If I put Eric Clapton's "I Wanna Make Love To You" on and really rub and rock the pole I can guarantee that someone who sees me is going to call me a slut or worse. If I swing it a little over the top I am going for the shock value. I am testing limits. I might get burned or I might have a great time. It is my choice as a dancer to reveal as much or as little about myself as I want. I am a consenting adult. I have to take responsibility for my actions and be prepared for a response that I may not like.
I have had many compliments about my legs. Simple inverts, sits, layouts and getting long on the floor bring my legs out. No one sees my legs if I focus my movements on my hips. I've got decent traps and biceps. I have to dance with my shoulders back. Once again the choice is sexy or sexual.
There is a huge difference between sexy and sexual. Sometimes all it takes is for a woman to sit down in Starbucks and open up her laptop to stir something up inside of me. It could be the way she carries herself, the intensity in her eyes, or her mannerisms. She could be wearing baggy jeans and a sweatshirt and be sexier than all hell. The last time I spent time a in strip club was during a hockey coach's workshop in Grand Rapids, Michigan. I just felt exploited.
Erotic equals sexual stimulation for either the audience, the dancer or both. Some pole dancers and sections of our society are going to have a problem with it. Let's not kid ourselves. There are no free lunches.
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