PDC Approved 3 star Pole Dancing Instructor Julie Santos.
Julie Santos started poling in 2011 before becoming a pole dancing instructor in January 2013. We spoke to Julie to find out more about her and her passion for pole. Julie now runs her own pole studio, Pole Tricks in Oxford.
Favourite moves: I love strength and dynamic moves like the phoenix lift, iron X, drops and flips, but I also love bendy moves that make beautiful shapes! So basically I love all pole moves haha <3
Favourite move to teach: When students are ready to start learning to invert, that’s when pole becomes even more addictive!!
My Favourite is Lupit Pole 45mm Brass, but I currently own a Lupit pole 42mm Stainless Steel at home, which is also very good!
Pole Idols: There are too many to name but my main pole idol I would say is Jenyne Butterfly because she was the first one who inspired me to start pole. I still remember watching her video on YouTube of her performing to ‘Florence and the machine – Dog days are over’ I was mesmerised by her grace, strength and flexibility. I honestly will never forget that routine, it was beautifully choreographed, flawless!
Workshops and One to Ones: I have been very lucky to have workshops with Bendy Kate, Karen Chaundy, Kristy Sellars, Daniel Rosen, Ian Mathews and One to one with Nicola Ghalmi. I learnt so much from them and they were all equally amazing.
Pole Competitions: I decided to enter a small competition for my first one, the ‘Dance Inspires In House Competition’ in Oxford. It was a last minute impulse entry and I only had three weeks to make an ‘Elite Category’ worthy routine. I was also working many hours teaching pole at the time and trying to juggle home life so I nearly pulled out because I felt like I didn’t have the energy to carry on training on top of everything else, but I’m so glad I didn’t, I placed 1st in the Elite Category, it was a very emotional day. I still can’t believe it, I originally entered to improve my skills and confidence as a performer and I came away with so much more.
Pole Performances/Appearances: Chippy's Got Talent
Qualifications and Professional Development:
- Spin City Beginners Pole Fitness
- Spin City Intermediate Pole Fitness
- Spin City Advance Pole Fitness (currently sending my assessment)
- Spin City Anatomy and Physiology for Aerial
- Spin City Pole Fabric
- Spin City Beginners Aerial Hoop (currently sending my assessment)
1. To enter another competition
2. To attend a workshop from Oona Kivela and Anastasia Skukhtorova
3. To teach my little boy to pole (see picture right)
4. To carry on inspiring and supporting others in the pole community and others to join the pole community!
Other hobbies and Interests: Aerial hoop and silks, acro yoga, art and design, photography, cats and I love anything glittery and shinny!
I have always had a passion for dance and gymnastics but never had the opportunity to take it seriously. I was feeling quite low after becoming a mum and my identity felt lost. I started looking for a new hobby, a fun way to exercise and something more interesting than just going to the gym. I tried several classes including dance fit, spinning and Zumba, but I never stuck to any of them as I didn't find them challenging enough and the fun seemed to have died out over time.
In 2011 I was at the Clothes Show Live and that's when I discovered Xpole, I went over and had a go myself and in no time at all I was hooked! I ordered my pole that week and started self-teaching beginner spins for a while until I managed to join classes when I brought my car. The atmosphere of the pole class was really friendly and I met some lovely people! My confidence grew, helped me tone and keep in shape. I loved pole so much I was training every day when I had the chance, I progressed very quickly and after a few months I knew that my passion was to teach, pass on my knowledge and love I have for pole to my students. After teaching for a pole school for 3 years I decided that it was my time to move on and bring classes to my local area, I’m now very excited to start my new classes this month.
Pole can be hard work and you need determination but I would recommend it to anyone as it's also really fun and beneficial. You get an amazing sense of achievement when you complete a move and then it gets quite addictive! Pole has honestly changed my life in such a positive way, I don't think I could ever be without it. I feel so lucky to be able to do what I love as a job, teaching is so rewarding! Watching all my students grow in confidence and strength is definitely the best part and the pole community is also very supportive, I’m so happy to be part of it.