Niche Biz: Pole Fitness Classes

With years of pop culture imagery and sex industry stereotypes firmly imprinted on our brains, it might be difficult to convince people that pole dancing is now officially recognized as a form of exercise.

The activity even has its own accredited organization, the International Pole Dance Fitness Association.

Historically, the sport can be traced back to an acrobatic dance from 12th-century China, which can still be seen today in Chinese circus acts and world-famous performance troupes like Cirque Du Soleil.

Today, pole fitness is considered an excellent strength training exercise, especially for the upper body. It improves flexibility, endurance and muscle definition — though all of this could be falling on deaf ears, as most of you are probably still thinking about strippers.

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