Although this is a strenuous form of exercise which puts pressure on various parts of your body, including your knees, there are things you can do to reduce to strain and prevent injuries.
Just a few months ago, we wrote about how to protect your wrists as a pole dancer, and it’s still one of our most popular articles to date! So, we decided to write one about protecting your knees too – we hope you find this useful!
In this article, you will learn about:
- How to protect your knees when pole dancing
- Different ways to strengthen your knees
- Recommended products such as knee-pads
So, let’s get started!
How to protect your knees as a pole dancer
Always Warm-Up Properly
As part of your regular warm-up, you should be performing joint rotations to warm up all of your joints. This includes your knees.
You can also perform some light jogging, jumping jacks or burpees as part of your warm-up – these will all help to prepare your joints for your session.
If you’ve warmed-up properly, then you reduce the risk of injuring yourself during your pole workout.
Cool Down Properly After Your Workout
You should stretch your muscles thoroughly after your workout to stretch your muscles and give your joints a chance to recover.
Always make sure you have enough time to cool down at the end of every pole dance session.
Maintain Good Form During Exercise
Always listen to your instructor’s directions to ensure you have good form. This means engaging the right muscles so you don’t put extra pressure on your joints.
When it comes to your knees, a common thing I’ve seen is during squats, people’s knees end up too far forward. In a squat, your knee should never go past your toe as this puts too much strain on your knees and not enough on your butt!
You should also never let your knee ‘flick’ or over-extend in any form of dance; any kicking motion should be controlled and have your muscles engaged.
Strengthen Your Leg Muscles
If you want strong knees, it goes without saying that you need strong legs too!
You should focus on strengthening the surround muscles; your calves, hamstrings, glutes and inner thighs. This should go further than just pole fitness, you should make the effort to improve your overall strength and condition your body for pole dancing.
That means you should be doing other sports and exercises to ensure you get a balanced workout.
Stronger muscles mean that you’re better equipped to support your knee joints.
Use Knee-Pads for Floor Work
Floorwork is one of the hardest things for your knees – knee-pads are a great way to protect your knees when pole dancing.
They may not be the sexiest thing to wear during a performance, but they’re great for warmups or practising. Knee-pads will work well on hard floors and carpets to prevent carpet burns, but they won’t provide you with any grip on the pole, which is why they’re so well suited to floor work.
I would go as far as to say that knee pads are an essential item for any pole dancer to have and make use of!
Here are our recommendations for the best knee pads to use when practising or working out:
- Adrenaline Adult Knee-Pads for Various Sports – these are flexible, breathable and available in different sizes. These are multi-purpose knee-pads designed to give your knees extra protection when performing various different sports. They’re great for pole dancers!
- Black Knee-Pads for Dancers – these are specifically designed for dancers, they’re very comfortable and have a layer of padded protection around the knee itself.
- ASICS Ace Low Profile Knee Pad – these are very high-quality and by a well-known brand.
Don’t Overdo Things
The easiest way to injure yourself is to overdo things.
Your body can only handle so much and it’s important that you rest in-between workouts. Leave at least a day between pole fitness sessions and any other activities you take part in to give your body a chance to recover from what you’ve put it through!
Only you can listen to your body and respond to what it’s telling you it can and can’t do, but remember that rest is an important part of any workout routine, and your knees will thank you for it!
Yoga for Knee-Pain
Yoga is a great way to protect your knees, but also to reduce recurring knee pain. It is an excellent way to complement your pole dancing workouts and will make you stronger and more flexible in the long-term.
Yoga is known for having many health benefits, including stronger joints; I highly recommend that everyone works yoga into their weekly routine as it really improves your well-being.
Yoga Moves To Strengthen Your Knees
- Supported Chair Pose
- Supported Half Moon Pose
- Easy Pose
- Pigeon Pose
- Child’s Pose
- Mountain Pose
These more advanced yoga moves will also help:
- Standing Split
- Reclining Hero Pose
- Full Lotus Pose
Don’t delay – get into yoga as soon as possible! Yoga will also break up your regular pole dancing routine, giving yourself a break for doing the same exercises and motions over and over again…
Get Omega-3 in your Diet
Omega3, 6 and 9 are important for keeping your joints strong and healthy. These foods contain lots of Omega3:
- Fish and seafood
- Sea vegetables/algae
- Grass-fed lean meat.
If you’re not good at being strict with your diet, then you may find that vitamins or supplements help in the meantime. I get all my vitamins from eVitamins as they sell months’ worth of supplements for about $15 and they ship internationally.
So, those are our top tips for protecting your knees when pole dancing! If you have any tips of your own, please share them by leaving a comment below.
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