How to write a show routine

If you’re reading this blog post then you’ve probably taken the gargantuan step in committing to performing pole publicly for the first time. Even if you’re just considering performing, this is still a fucking great milestone in your pole journey. Personally, you’re never quite the same after you perform for the first time. Yes I’m not going to lie you’re an absolute bag of nerves before performing. You’re watching others perform before you and repeatedly asking yourself why on earth you thought this was a good idea to sign up. However, the adrenaline rush you get ten seconds into performing, smashing out your combos and dancing in the style you love to a song you love is one of the best feelings you can experience (probably better than the birth of your first born as it’s not half as painful!).

If you’re anything like I was, you feel in a right old muddle when it comes to actually writing the routine. Therefore I’ve whipped up a wee list below of what I do to make the whole choreography process a fun one.

  1. Pick a song you love

 Stay true to yourself. There is no point dancing to an artist/song/genre of music you don’t like because it’s popular in the pole world. Personally, I love heavy metal, the heavier and more brutal the better. Therefore when I have to write a routine I always turn to my favourite metal bands for inspiration. To me it wouldn’t feel natural, sexy or fun if I had to choreograph a routine to some shower of shite by Justin Beiber or Drake or some other bollocks. Dance to music you love and the whole experience will instantly become more fun.

  1. Consider your costume and theme

 I always find the performances that stick in the mind of the audience for all the right reasons are those with a kick ass costume or theme. Putting the extra effort into your costume especially makes the whole routine creation process a lot more fun, as the only limit to what you can (or can’t) wear is your own imagination. If you’re dancing to a film’s theme for example, think about what you could wear that would work well in a routine and be instantly recognisable as something from the film.

  1. Slow and steady wins the race!

 As soon as you’re told you’re definitely performing, get to work on your routine ASAP! It makes the whole process much less stressful if you have a completed routine written as far in advance as you can, then all you need to do is practice the fucker until it’s nailed! The last thing you want is to be running around shaking like a shitting dog a week before the show with half a routine done written. Get the bugger written early on and reap the rewards in the long run.

  1. Don’t include any moves you can’t confidently do

 When you’re getting your routine together, ask yourself if the move you want to include you can execute fully without a crash mat and if you’re using heels, if you can bust it out in those too. If the answer is yes to both of those then banging, stick it in your routine and you’re good to go. However if you can’t then bloody hell do not put it in your routine! There is no point writing an overly complex routine that you can barely do for the sake of trying to wow the audience, you’ll seriously only stress yourself out and that’s not what anybody needs! Blow the audience away with a series of moves you can perform confidently instead of trying to force yourself into difficult combos.

  1. Make sure your routine fits your song

 Paying extra attention to your musicality when writing a routine is very important. Try and make the big, stand out parts of your routine fit the big, stand out parts in the song. For example, back when I performed at the 360 Pole Dancing Halloween showcase, I made sure my most complicated combo (a Gemini followed by inverted crucifix lol) happened at the most explosive part of my song just after the guitar solo. I also find guitar solos are perfect for some really slinky, floor fuckery floorwork, so if you’ve got a filthy, dirty solo in your song, try out some sick floorwork to it and see how you get on!

Well there’s my top five tips for writing a killer show routine and having fun in the process. I hope you’ve found them useful!

*Please note! These tips are for writing a show routine and not a competition one. Competition routines often have way more rules and regulations you need to follow, so if you’re entering a competition please read the entry rules for your comp as a guide to creating your routine instead and not this blog full of some daft cows pearls of wisdom.*

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