For a long time I used the Pencil Spin only as a conditioning exercise in my regular pole practice. Until I started combining it with other moves and realized that there are ways to use it artistically in my pole routines and performances.
Then I noticed that every time I perform it on stage, I always get audience applause – regardless of whether the public is pole experienced or non-pole related.
People love it! Try for yourself and listen to how your audience responds.
Why do people love it?
My theory: Everyone who has ever played on a merry-go-round or on a swing ride as a child has experienced physical laws with their own bodies and knows that it takes good body tension to keep your body vertical to a spinning pole.
And not everyone can do it.
SO, WHAT’S THE SECRET?
- The easier part is the entrance into the Pencil Spin. It’s a regular Pull Up, where your biceps and your lats are doing most of the work. But in fact, a lot more muscles are being activated. You might, for example, feel your forearms sore later – depending on your strength in each muscle group and whether you’re overcompensating any lack of strength with another muscle group.
- To keep your body vertical to the spinning pole, you need to work against the spin forces with your entire body. Most of all, you need to keep a strong core. In the video tutorial below I’ve included my Nr. 1 core exercise for a strong Pencil Spin that you can practice on the floor at home. To make it even easier for my students about which muscles to engage during the spin, I tell them to squeeze their abs (belly) and their glutes (butt cheeks).
All in all, the Pencil Spin is a great exercise for the whole body.
But back to the audience applause and how to incorporate this move into your pole routines and performances.
One easy step I’d like you to do today is to create a simple combo out of 3 moves – one of which should be the Pencil Spin. The transition into climbing is optional.
Really, keep it simple. I can’t emphasize enough that beauty lies in simplicity. My new spinning routine, which ended up way too complicated and so not particularly beautiful, proves it! :p
Also, the struggle with the pole move Honey Badger was so real that I had to include the fail clips this time. At the end I was too tired and I rushed through the moves more than usual. At least the Pencil Spin looks TOP! 🙂