Mind, body and pole

Another, long-anticipated, Recovery Programme is on its way… And spaces are filling up fast – In fact, as I write this, more places are being booked.

This unique, one-of-a-kind programme commenced last year. There was such success and high demand that an evening and day time programme were held, as well as a follow-on programme towards the end of 2017.

Why has it had such an impact…? The ever-busy Karen had long wished to combine her Recov Prog A thoughtsreceived_10216655757606194two passions: therapy and pole. Many people will be so grateful that Karen pursued this idea, thus creating the Recovery Programme. Lots of you will be familiar with the inspirational Amber and Marianne (who actually have bravely assisted at these programmes). These bright, caring and funny young women, unfortunately have had ups and downs, experiencing difficult times and dark moments. Fully qualified and experienced CBT Therapist, Karen, utilised therapy, combined with pole fitness to encourage and motivate these girls, allowing them to shift their focus in a positive way. Both of these ladies experienced a sense of achievement, a talent and an increased confidence. If pole could help Marianne and Amber through such difficult emotions, Karen knew that it could benefit so many others.

I was actually there when Karen revealed her plan, asking if anyone would be interested in taking part in this ‘pilot’ programme. I don’t think she realised that by the end of the day, most places would be filled, with further names on a waiting list! Its first participants recognised what an opportunity this would be. I am proud to say that I have attended the 12-week programme as ‘student’, as well as having the opportunity to lead some of the sessions.

The course consists of a mix of group ‘therapy’ and pole fitness/ dance. The first half of each class involves ‘theory’ – becoming familiar with the concepts of CBT and Mindfulness, for example; learning how to incorporate various therapeutic techniques into your life; accessing various tools and resources to aid with anxiety, depression and other areas of mental health; practising a variety of exercises to support well-being. Add to this, lots of laughter (very innocent of course!) and huge support from your fellow attendees (i.e. new friends), all within a comfortable and sensitive environment… The result is an incredibly worthwhile, perhaps life-changing, experience.

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Let’s not forget about the pole aspect! As well as working on your mind, you are also working on your body – building inner and outer strength. I suppose there are many forms of fitness, exercise or sport which could be combined with a psychological aspect; however, for women particularly, I cannot think of an activity which goes hand-in-hand more appropriately than pole fitness. These are not two distinct and separate parts of the Recovery Programme – they are reflections of each other. After learning from Karen about dealing with your thoughts, having the right attitude and confidence-building (amongst many other things), what better way to practise, develop and showcase your new-found positivity than spinning, inverting and posing…!? Due to the supportive and self-esteem building nature of the programme, you will progress at your own rate. Whether you are creating beautiful pole or floor poses by the end of the six weeks, or hanging upside down from your ankles, you will feel braver, inspired and proud (especially when you see the beautiful photographs which Karen and her team so attentively capture as an amazing memento). It could be the start of your pole obsession!

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Being involved in a couple of Karen’s fantastic programmes, I can say with confidence, that you will have an enjoyable and positive experience, perhaps developing a talent and skills you never knew you possessed, as well as being provided with life-long tools to support mental health and well-being. And if you don’t believe me… There has been significant world-wide interest in Pole Infinity and Beyond Gravity Yoga and everything it offers. The United Pole Artists have seen the amazing work done by Karen and the team – they were so impressed that they visited the little studio in Derry to observe the Recovery Programme in action and carry-out interviews as well as, how could we forget(!?), filming for the (hopefully soon to be released) documentary, ‘Fistful of Steel’.

The upcoming six-week Programme commences on Friday, 22nd of June (in the evening), each session lasting two and a half hours. This is a chance to boost your confidence, self-esteem and positive thinking. Whether you would like to learn how to deal with anxiety, low-mood or other mental health problems, this innovative teaching of Mindfulness, CBT and other highly-effective techniques (not to mention the power of pole), is a step in the right direction in improving you body, mind and soul…

And If that wasn’t enough, keep an eye out for further specialised workshops and programmes in the coming months.

For further information, or to secure your place, send a private message to the business page: https://www.facebook.com/PoleInfinityDerry/

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