Would you let your child pole dance?

Katherine - posted on 01/25/2011 ( 20 moms have responded )

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There are a lot of things that frighten me about raising a girl in this day and age, but toddlers pole dancing? Meh.

Jezebel has a slideshow up of some pictures from Pole Spin magazine that show families who embrace pole dancing as a way of life, including 2-year-old Kayne Benford. His first word was "pole" and the magazine has dubbed him the "World's Youngest Pole Dancer." Of course, the outrage has ensued, which is I'm sure what the magazine wanted, but still, why such passion against the pole?

I have a 2-year-old daughter, and I would absolutely let her pole dance. In fact, I pole danced regularly as a child, even though I grew up in pretty much the strictest Catholic household in the universe.

The poles in the unfinished basement were actually the feature that made me beg my parents to buy the house that was the fantasy of my first-grade dreams. They have long since been remodeled over, but there were a good number of years in which those poles served me well. I spent hours roller skating around them, using them for gymnastics maneuvers, and yes, even dancing around them. I had no idea that dancing around a pole was "pole dancing." And neither should any 2-year-old.

Why should a perfectly innocent object like a pole be ruled out for exercise just because a few strippers choose to incorporate them into their routines? That's giving the seedy entertainment industry a little too much power, don't you think? The pole is just a prop -- think may poles instead of strip joints. In some parts of the world, pole dancing is a sport. Are we going to rule out chairs because of lap dancing?

In today's society, anything can be sexualized, and most of it is. Dance is particularly ripe with suggestive movements and explicit music to be had, and those are things I'll try to protect my daughter from as long as I can.

Pole dancing is a great workout, and if used for purposes of exercise or as an innocent prop for dancing, then sure I'd let my daughter do it. I might not call it pole dancing, and I'd monitor her movements and costumes like I would with any form of dance, but a pole really shouldn't be that ... polarizing.

Would you let your child pole dance?

http://thestir.cafemom.com/toddler/11531...

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Barb - posted on 01/25/2011

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here ya go, this'll take the sexy out of the pole dancin for ya:

Amanda - posted on 01/26/2011

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My toddler pole dances (her choice) we have a half finished basement, her FAV toy down there is the pole LOL! I have no issues with it, she is doing this because its fun, not because its sexual, or that she's seen a stripper doing it. The human race have very warpped imagines of the world today, and we really need to step back and realize not everything is about sex! :0)

Johnny - posted on 01/25/2011

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It's a great workout for adults. But letting kids participate is blatantly ignoring the context of the activity IMO. One of our good friends is a pole dancing instructor, she never was a stripper though. She does not allow her 13 year old to participate, and she has sat her down and clearly explained where pole dancing hails from, the way it has traditionally existed in society, and why she needs to wait until she's older to give it a try. If you've spent any time watching pole dancing as a workout, it has very very many obviously sexual maneuvers. This could be said to be true for a bit of modern dance and hip hop, but if you took out the sexual innuendo from the pole dancing moves, you wouldn't have much left. With other forms of dance, that isn't the case.

I find it really silly to ask "Why should a perfectly innocent object like a pole be ruled out for exercise just because a few strippers choose to incorporate them into their routines?" That's like asking why kids shouldn't be able to take mommy's vibrator and play with it in the bath just because sometimes mommy incorporates it into sex. I mean, without context, it's just a pole and it's just a vibrator. But the fact is, pole dancing originated in the strip clubs and was entirely designed to entertain men in a sexual way. It's not like someone stole the idea from your local gymnasium and just happened to stick it in a strip club.

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Tania - posted on 06/04/2011

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Hi ladies, I am a mother of 2 kids, my son is 15 and my daughter is 11. I am a pole dance fitness instructor in South Africa. I am commenting today only to "stick-up" for pole fitness as a sport. There is a driving force in the poling community to have pole recognised as an Olympic sport. I proudly support this. The "sexual" stigma of pole dancing is actually VERY sad. But however, once we as "new age" women get our minds out of the gutter our children will grow from our experiences and not be closed minded. In saying this though, it is not to allow us to throw our kids to the wolves. I have taught my daughter pole fitness, purely as that, a fitness. She is strong, subtle and far more energetic now than she was when she did gymnastics or running or netball. I proudly allow her to show off her "tricks" as she can do moves she sees, learns and practices from the pole greats like Jenyne Butterfly, Jamilla De Ville and Tracey Simmonds. I feel if my daughter could be in control of life such as these fantastic ladies have done within the spectrum of opinions of their "dance", then my child will succeed far more than most. My sister-in-law, also has 2 sons - 21 and 24 (men) that are fantastic on the pole to - men are far stronger than women and make it look so easy but they "played" for 6 years and also we proudly showed them off to the community. It is not what we do anymore, it is how we do it and how we teach our children to decide that matters most. I feel as long as they are doing "fitness" with their mothers - they are far safer there, than they will ever be with anyone else.

Tracey - posted on 01/27/2011

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If kids dance like this in their own home it's fine, but I would not want my kids doing this as part of a school PE class, especially in a mixed sex class.

Sharon - posted on 01/26/2011

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No. I see those little whores in training shopping.. yeah real nice...

Nicole - posted on 01/26/2011

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I would not sign either of my children up for a pole dancing class but if we had a pole in our home, and they wanted to play with it, and dance around it, no problem.

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I don't really care either way as long as my child is safe. I to loved roller skating around the poles in my grandparents basement as well as dancing around them. There was never anything sexual about it and quite frankly I don't see the big deal anyway either.

Cyndel - posted on 01/26/2011

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@Barb-your right not sexy, but totally awesome. That is pole work I would have no trouble with kids learning!
BTW- I am against pole dancing.

Charlie - posted on 01/26/2011

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Pole aerobics is a sport it is not in any way sexual so yes pole aerobics classes are fine .

Becky - posted on 01/26/2011

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No. To clarify, if we had a pole in our house and my toddler wanted to dance around it, fine. But to put them in pole dancing classes or teach them how to actually do it, nope.

Meghan - posted on 01/26/2011

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Children don't know this is what strippers do...that is adult social perspective...firefighters slide down poles. I wouldn't encourage it but if I had a daughter who did that I would put a positive spin like that on it...it would be innocent on their part.

Sherri - posted on 01/26/2011

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As long as it is done for exercise and not sexualized I have no problem with it.

Lacye - posted on 01/25/2011

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When I think of pole dancing, a stripper wearing nothing but a thong pops in my head, and she has like double Gs too! I don't think it is appropriate for a toddler to be pole dancing. Yeah if an adult wants to, fine, whatever floats your boat.

Katherine - posted on 01/25/2011

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@ Barb, that's gross but he's actually really good!







LOL I called you Bard.

Katherine - posted on 01/25/2011

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Yes, I've heard it's a great workout too. It would be cool. But a toddler? I don't think so...

Johnny - posted on 01/25/2011

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Just to add, I'd love to have my own pole and learn how. I am not opposed to pole dancing in the least!

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