Talk about being in pole position!
Kim McAdam, from Bispham, has been demonstrating she has all the tricks of the trade by winning a national pole fitness competition.
Kim, who has lessons at ECN Bodyworks in Marton, scooped the top prize in the Intermediate Pole category in the International Pole And Aerial Tournament (IPAAT) grand finals, which were held at the Albert Hall, in Nottingham.
She had competed in the semi-final, up against seven others, and got through to the top three to compete in the final the next day.
She then wowed the judges with her routine, to be crowned the champion.
Her instructor, Emma Colsey-Nicholls, also got through to the semi-final in the Expert Category.
Kim, who has been doing pole fitness for three years, said: “The competition went really well.
“It was a little bit manic as it was so busy, and there were so many competing, but I actually really enjoyed it.
“I couldn’t believe it after the first day when they said I was through to the final.
“I really didn’t expect to come first – I was very shocked.
“One of my friends had helped me put my routine together, I had practised it on my own and performed it a few times in class to get used to doing in front of people.
“I’ve been doing pole fitness for three years and been at ECN for two years, which has really helped me improve – the instructors are great.”
Once thought of as belonging to nightspots, pole dancing is now increasingly popular with fitness enthusiasts.
Among the benefits of pole fitness are: building and toning muscles, improving upper body and core strength, burning calories, helping boost confidence, helping boost flexibility, helping improve balance.
Kim said: “I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been from it. It sounds clichéd, but it’s true.
“I’ve built up muscle, but not gone bulky – it has really toned me up.
“It’s great for building your confidence and self-esteem. And it’s good fun.
“Winning the competition has given me even more confidence. I didn’t expect it at all.
“The standard was so high, with people from right across the country.
“I’d recommend pole fitness to anyone.”