Introducing Al from Swansea Pole and Aerial Academy
Jun 30, 2021
“I’m originally from Derby, but I moved to Swansea in 2009 for love. Even though the relationship didn’t work out, I ended up falling in love with Swansea and decided to stay.
“I love everything about this city. It has a cool vibe; a beach and the Gower isn’t too far away. I’ve put down my roots here.
“My friend, who is a pole instructor, recommended pole to me. While going through the break-up, I wanted to do something for myself, and she suggested pole fitness. It turned out to be exactly what I needed. It gave me confidence in myself, it was empowering, it gave me everything I needed to get back to being ‘me’.
“I remember attending my first ever class here, 10 years ago. I was the only male. After some time, I was asked to become an instructor – I jumped at the chance.
“A few years later and the pole company shut down. I couldn’t bear the thought of losing this community, so alongside my friend and student, Rosie, we set up the Academy in June 2019.
“It was a dream come true.
“We attract people of all genders, all abilities, from 18 to 60+ year olds. Our students travel to our classes from Cardiff, Ammanford, Bridgend and everywhere in between. There are only four pole classes in south Wales and we’re proud to be the only one between Pembrokeshire and Cardiff.
“We run classes Mon-Fri and ‘Sass Class’ is one of our most popular classes. This is your chance to learn a pole dancing routine to music – totally different to our pole fitness classes but so much fun.
“The perception of pole has changed drastically over the years. It takes real skill, strength and flexibility and I’m proud that it is now classed as a sport and may even reach the Olympics.
“This studio is my baby, my passion. There’s nothing better than seeing someone that’s been struggling on a move, ‘getting it’. I love seeing the look on their face when they realise what their bodies are capable of. It’s surprising how many people underestimate what they can do.
“This is an exercise, therapy and friendship group, all rolled into one – there’s something really special about this place and the people that come here.”