Name: Hannah Rose Kaynes
Instagram handle: @hannahrose_aerial
When did you start pole work and where? I started teaching pole dance about four years ago in London, and I've been training in pole dance and circus arts for eight years.
Is it your full-time job or a part-time job? Pole dance and circus is my full-time career and has been for the last two years. While I was training I had another job in an office but, over time, I built up my teaching work and training and there came a point where I needed to dedicate myself to my pole career in order to progress and be as good as I wanted to be. When I started teaching it was hard juggling training, teaching and the day job (I used to go to the gym before work, sneak out at lunchtime to practise my handstands, then straight to the studio after work to train and teach) but it was worth it in the end.
How often do you practise and where do you practise? I practise and teach pretty much every day. When I'm training for competitions I will spend around three to four hours per day on my latest routine choreography and drilling my pole tricks, then stretching at least three times a week and I aim to go to the gym three times a week for additional cardio and to help with my stamina on stage. I am also a trained aerialist, and went to circus school last year, where I specialised in aerial straps, so I practise this discipline around five to six hours a week alongside pole.
Have you entered any competitions/ won any awards? Yes, it was the UK Professional Pole Championships this past weekend and I won, in the Elite Category! I have been competing in pole competitions since 2012, and it definitely hasn't been all smooth sailing, so to win the biggest competition in the UK means the world to me. I also won the award for Best Pole Tricks in both 2015 and 2016. My training partner and friend Ayesha also won in the Instructors category. Last month we also competed internationally at Pole Art Cyprus, which is one of the biggest competitions in the pole dancing calendar.
How has your body changed since starting pole? My shoulders, biceps and triceps have definitely grown since starting pole due to all the upper body work, and my core is definitely 100 times stronger. But I'm concerned with what I can DO with my body, not what it looks like. A six-pack? Great, but only if it means I can hold my Human Flag for longer.
Has pole work given you confidence personally? Yes definitely, I think doing something you love will always make you feel more confident, and teaching is an incredibly rewarding job.
How do you feel when you're performing/ competing? Nervous! No matter how many competitions I perform in I still get incredibly nervous before I go on stage. The feeling on stage varies, depending on how I feel about the routine, the reactions of the audience etc. On stage this weekend I LOVED every moment, the audience were extremely supportive and that spurs you on to perform your hardest and really believe in the character you are playing on stage.
Do you think you need core strength to start pole work? Or can you build it from scratch? You can definitely build it from scratch, although I definitely believe in ab work both on and off the pole as you develop your skills.
What do you think the stereotype of a pole 'dancer' is? How do people react when you tell them your profession? Most of the people I surround myself with are already involved in pole dance or circus so I rarely encounter people's stereotypes, and it doesn't concern me anyway. My mum is always finding it hard to explain my job to the neighbours and relatives so I just send them my latest YouTube video, that normally does the trick. There's now a group of pensioners in my hometown that are very educated in the art of pole dancing!