I saw something several weeks ago as I was waiting for a class that made my stomach churn.
It was a girl asking for moves that were clearly out of her skill level, and it was an instructor obliging and (attempting to) teach them.
Teachers, coaches and instructors: Please grow a spine (if you have one already, please disregard. I love you all and you are fantastic.). It is OK to tell students no. It is OK to tell a person that they are not advanced enough yet. It is OK to refuse to teach things that you don’t know how to do.
There is a lot of buzz right now on safety, including this delightful blog on Spinning Love Story and a facebook post about safety from one of my favorite pole bloggers, Aerial Amy. As a dancer, please use common sense, and stay in your own level. Take the time to build up the strength, flexibility, and technique for more advanced moves. Follow the curriculum set by your instructors or studios and be patient.
As for teachers, my expectations are higher. If you are going to teach other people how to do something physical (particularly if it involves moving upside down, extreme flexibility, and all other aspects that make pole difficult and dangerous) you absolutely must be able to recognize the level a student is at and adjust accordingly. If you receive pushback, you must stand your ground and maintain control of the situation. It’s OK to be an asshole when people’s safety is at risk. That’s your job. As a student, I expect you to be in control.