Interview Kay Penney founder Pole Passion 2001, Miss Pole Dance UK 2005, World Pole Dance 2009
Hi my friend!! It's me, Dani, from Brazil, with some questions: 20th April 2015
1 - How was the beginning in Pole Dance? when did you decide to do it?
A. I first found pole dance at a social gathering, a party, many many years ago. The very first time I had a go I immediately loved it – I was free and able to express myself, through dance and movement on an around the pole, dancing to the music and using the pole as my dance partner.
From the very first moment I was addicted and wanted to practice more. At that time in 2001 there was no pole fitness, only exotic pole dancing in gentlemen’s clubs where women would dance for men. For me I danced for myself totally oblivious of onlookers. I could connect with the pole using it as a metaphor of strength, power and support, being able to block out my challenges of a young mother struggling to cope with three young children, feeling worthless, over weight and powerless.
Pole gave me an inner confidence that no other sport or dance gave me at that most vulnerable time of my life. At age 32 this was a changing moment in my life and I then started to receive private lessons for many months learning to become stronger on and around the pole. As a former dancer and fitness enthusiast pole incorporated all the elements of excitement and challenge I was looking for at that time
2 -How is your day ? Always many things to do ?
A. My day is extremely busy, yet my drie and ambition for the pole does not make this painful. I have now three grown beautiful children, Leanna aged 20, Alan aged 19 and Sam who is more dependent on me aged 14. I focus on their self development and goal setting as well as my own
I work full time always pretending its part time but the hours I put into the business are long yet very rewarding. I now have a fabulous team of six office staff and over 36 Pole Passion instructors and apprentices who directly work under my guidelines and ethos as our business has developed so much over the last 15 years yet feel it is still in its infancy, with so much still to achieve, conquer and share world wide
3 - In your free time, what do you like to do ?
A. My free time away from Pole Passion, Miss Pole Dance and World Pole Dance I love to go to the gym, I find stretching an excellent way to help with relaxation, keeping focused and flexible in and out of the office. I love to socialise with my ‘non’ pole friends who keep me sane in this rapidly developing pole world. Unfortunately they are proud to introduce me as a pole dancer!! So do I ever get time away from Pole ?? – I love my family and love to travel and would love to visit the health spa and beaches for my free time where I feel the benefit of the sunshine and hands on massage. I love to learn and love people so naturally I study psychology, learning more and more about the human kind, what motivates people and what people really want in all cultures. I love to travel and learn about different mindsets based on their beliefs and attitudes. I also like to watch crime investigation and detective programmes
4 - How is the Pole Dance in England? Is it famous? tell me.
A. Pole dancing for sport is developing very quickly in the UK. We accredited our teacher training programmes with the UK and European governments and exercise of fitness professionals in 2006 and now we are in very exciting times of innovation and pioneering pole fitness throughout the world – Pole Passion is leading this sport and artistry, with acknowledging both the sexy and fitness providing a professional training programme for all, progressing and adapting each step of the way. This was a lengthy and painful process initially in the UK, with many professionals telling us it will never happen, that many gyms will not accept it and if they do, it will not last. Always with the true belief it will last and that our training has all the components of fitness therefore we are true to the professional standards and our comprehensive and varied programmes
The industry is growing very rapidly and each month we bring out new moves and new programmes to accommodate all
5 - Tell me more about World Pole Sport & Fitness - World Pole Dance.
A. World Pole Dance was born in 2009, The industry was looking towards me to provide a professional platform to support National Pole Dance Champions, a place of progression and to further connect everyone world wide . At the time there was no place for the National champions to go. Following on many years of successful Miss Pole Dance UK and Miss Pole Dance Australia our two competitions were ruling and dominating the world at that time in the competition arena. We Pole Passion (UK) & Bobbies studio (Australia) Vanessa, Bobbie, Felix, Miss Poledance (Newzland) Amy, Miss Pole Dance (Canada) Tammy Morris, Miss Pole Dance Russia, Elena Shishkova, Miss Pole Dance Budapest, Alma Pirner, all had the same ethos and ideas about supporting their competitors. World Pole Dance for me was an idea to promote the ambitious world wide and support the talented individuals and a place to share different cultures on and around the pole on a worlds platform – social media has really helped with this dream enabling us to connect on a daily basis
6 - About the movements on Pole Dance, is there some hardest ?
A. The tricks and transitions of Pole moves are innovating all the time, each month in the UK we seem to have a new combination and or a new trick emerging every month – this is what makes it so exciting and challenging- there is something for everyone, even people with disabilities or physical or mental challenges. I love to support people who have challenges for me the pole is their prop they can connect too without the fear of being wrongly judged
7 - About Food, What do you like?
A. For me I like healthy food, fruit and salads are my favourites, free from preservatives so making my own food is important to me and my family We like to cook fresh greens and live food with very little meats is my favourite
8 - Do you remember about your first class on Pole Dance? Tell me.
A. When I started pole there were no structured pole classes as we have now, only exotic dance such as lap dancing, pole dancing and striptease. I learnt my first few moves from an exotic dancer who I found advertising how to learn to lap, strip and pole dance in 3 hours, I found I was a natural and she asked me,’ why arnt you in the gentleman’s clubs you would make a fortune?’ This was not my focus although I was extremely flattered t the time
9 - Tell me more about your life in Brighton. what do you like, cool places to visit, things like that.
A. Brighton England is an awesome place to be, cosmopolitan and open minded, the perfect place for me to start up pole dancing in 2001, for women’s empowerment confidence, fitness and fun (our motto) without the fear of being labelled a stripper or prostitute, which was so stereotypical 15 years ago
10 About the flexibility in Pole Dance. Is it hard to do?
A, The beauty of pole is that you can make it as hard or as easy as you like, there is always something to challenge yourself with, whether it be a new move or new combination of moves. To advance on the pole yes you need to be flexible both on and off the pole. I like to include flexibility training in the programmes from an early beginning This is not only good for pole but also for good maintenance ad well being of the body
11 - Do you like to use cosmetics?
A. Yes I like to use cosmetics. I am a qualified beauty therapist in my life before pole so health and well being and beauty products are an important part of my life .I can go many days without makeup but I love also to be adventurous with makeup too. Theatrical makeup in particular is something of interest to me as I have a theatrical and performance based background too
12 - About your style, what do you like to wear ?
A. As a child I never followed fashion, my mother used to dress me in boys clothes (my brothers hand me downs) so for me I was never able to follow fashion. I did however have a reputation with my family and friends that I could always make something look stylish, sexy and glamourous
My daughter however is very much into fashion and design, having studied it at college and now she has become my fashion guru. I like to look professional and stylish yet as an action woman, who is always on the go, I need to be comfortable and confident prepared for all eventualities
13 - Leave a message, whatever.
A. For me pole fulfils all my needs. My love to connect and help, likeminded people, who focus on their own self-development and growth, to continue to create a thriving community with likeminded motivated, individuals who also love and care about others development
I would like to thank you about it. Count on me always!! Kisses!!
Many thanks for your questions
Living & sharing the Passion on the Pole
Kay Penney – Chairwoman & creator World Pole Dance Federation & Pole Passion Ltd