Amy Price believes that once people open their minds to try pole exercising, they will become hooked like she did.
Mrs. Price, 29, the mother of three young children, grew up in Wichita Falls and moved to Tyler in 2002 to attend Tyler Junior College and The University of Texas at Tyler, earning degrees in psychology.
About eight years ago, her sister-in-law showed her pole exercising. Her first thought was, “Wait, what are you doing?” she said. Mrs. Price decided to try it and loved it.
“It’s all about women empowerment and having a good time with a good group of ladies,” Mrs. Price said, adding that it is a workout without feeling like one.
She’d heard about businesses in Dallas that offered pole exercise classes and girl’s night out events but there was nothing like it in Tyler. In September, after having her third baby, Mrs. Price said her husband encouraged her to open Pole Exercise-Tyler. She is holding her grand opening at the location near Hastings on Saturday.
Mrs. Price has always been very active, adding that she always had a lot of upper body strength, which is needed for pole exercising. In high school, she played volleyball, basketball, ran track, and played clarinet in the band. She was a cheerleader in high school and at TJC.
After school, she stayed fairly active and after having three children, which are 6 months, 2 and 4, she decided pole exercising would be great to incorporate into her daily life. By opening the business, she hopes to “help myself and other women who are like me,” she said, adding that it is an opportunity for people to branch out and do something different in the Tyler area.
She said it can be a taboo area of fitness, but she sees it as a “beautiful art” and a sport.
“It is dance and strength and flexibility and balance and all those things that coordinate with moving around the pole,” Mrs. Price said. “Some people have to be a little more open minded, but once you try it, you’re hooked.”
Mrs. Price thinks it will get a good response in Tyler. Since starting a Facebook page about a month ago, she already has about 650 followers and multiple women already have signed up for classes, she said.
With six poles, she offers small group classes, as well as pole parties, where a group of friends can come learn a routine for two hours and have a good time. She said she also will teach men, but the parties are single gender only.
She believes pole exercising is no different than Zumba or yoga.
“You’re strengthening your body and moving …” she said. “There just happens to be a pole you use to stabilize you and do tricks.”
Some might have reservations about trying the new type of exercise, but “once you get there, all your worries and insecurities will be washed away,” she said. It allows people to “be in a comfortable environment with other women and do what we do best – dance.”
On Saturday, she is holding seven one-on-one instruction classes to teach the safety, guidelines and fundamental things needed to begin “poling.” She said after only a few days of registration, the classes for the first day are full.
Mrs. Price and eight other instructors offer poling, as well as strength and conditioning, a precursor to the class, belly dancing and yoga. Child care is also provided.
Pole Exercise-Tyler will offer eight classes per day, including courses that are once a week for eight weeks, in the 1,800-square-foot space. Mrs. Price said she also will offer different workshops on the weekend. The first one will be “Sweep Your Sweetie off Their Feet,” a two-hour workshop at 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Feb. 8 in preparation for Valentine’s Day. Workshops also could include other kinds of exercise and styles of dancing.
She said people can sign up for classes online or at the business in advance or can walk in and join a class. A variety of different memberships will be offered.
She said all of the instructors live in Tyler and are around the same age, except for the belly dancer, who has been dancing for 25-plus years. They include a yoga instructor who teaches at TJC, a UT Tyler graduate who majored in kinesiology, and a college student studying education will be one of the women caring for children.
“It’s just a great group of girls,” she said.
Pole Exercise-Tyler: 4007 S. Broadway Ave. Suite H
Hours: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday