Rakaia’s Sally-Anne Parris is hooked on pole fitness and as well as teaching it, she has recently enjoyed her first competition.
The busy mother of four gave pole fitness a try four years ago and hasn’t looked back since.
She achieved her international pole instructor certificate in November and gives four classes a week at Ashburton studio Inverted Fitness, owned by Lesley Coffey.
She also attends two classes a week in Wigram, where she is focused on her improving her performance skills.
Sally-Anne took part in her first pole showcase event in Christchurch before Christmas, and despite competing with a stress fracture in her forearm, thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
Another showcase event is lined up at Easter, ahead of the NZ Amateur Pole Performer heats in August.
Sally-Anne says poling is just so different from other fitness workouts.
It works the arms, legs and core and both sides of the body need to be as strong as each, she says.
“It’s my challenge and I want to do it for me.
“I’m not a gym girl, but I am very much goal orientated.”
Sally-Anne, who is also a relief teacher at Rakaia School and helps out at Rakaia Four Square, which she owns with husband Glen, still runs up to 10km most days and swims three times a week.
“My body is strong, which is good for poling, but what I struggle with in my performance routines is flow.
“I’m still improving flow between holding and lifting moves and the transition from one pole to another and learning not to just rely on brute strength.”
Sally-Anne says classes at Inverted Fitness are super-inclusive and she always comes away on such a high.
The women who attend have a range of body shapes and different abilities.
“The classes are very body positive and there is so much positivity and encouragement offered.”
Pole fitness helps with co-ordination, strength and agility, she says.
“You have to learn to push and pull your body at the same time, which takes a bit of practice.”
Sally-Anne has not been put off by the occasional minor injury when practising her routines and aims to continue to push herself and to improve further.
More information on pole fitness classes in Ashburton can be found at the invertedfitnessnz.com website or Facebook page.