The Search for Knowledge - The Story of Destynnie and how Polepedia came to be
July 28, 20205 min read
Destynnie worked in a technical online field, and she was beginning to feel that her work from home routine was dragging her.
Yep! We’ve all been there.
The only difference was this was Destynnie three years ago. Destynnie decided she wanted something different to keep her inspired and feeling alive during her usual routine.
She did some searching for dance classes, and between ballroom dancing and belly dancing, pole dancing caught her interest. It was something out of the box and fun to try.
Fuelled by curiosity and love of the new-found craft, she set out to learn everything she could about it; however, heaps of questions were left unanswered online. She struggled to find learning material on how to do inverts, how to lift herself up onto the pole, and even the most basic questions as to how to deal with bruises.
After cycling through a couple of studios looking for answers, for something better, Destynnie was convinced that the lack of information could be a recipe for disaster.
“My fiancé wanted to try it out as well. In his very first class, they taught him how to invert – and by taught, I mean, they told him to do it and not how to do it… So, he cracked a rib,” she recollected.
This unexpected and painful incident made Destynnie realize that there was a major gap in the availability of online resources for pole dancing. The lack of information was bound to cause more injuries and mishaps for beginners – just like what happened to her fiancé – and she couldn’t ignore this reality.
Motivated with the inspiration to fill the knowledge gap for pole dancers around the world, it was in August 2018 that Destynnie launched PolePedia, an online, community-based resource, along with her fiancé Elliot and fellow pole dancer Priscilla. Later, pole dancer and studio owner Kim Kida would join the team.
Initially, in an era where people turned to the internet to find help, PolePedia was set up as a platform akin to Wikipedia. The vision was to create a safe community where pole dancers could join in and give advice to one another.
This, however, did not go as expected.
“It was just crickets,” as Destynnie put it. Utter, deafening silence on the wiki. Nobody joined in the discussions on the platform because they felt like they didn’t know enough to share the right knowledge.
Everyone wanted to lurk on the side lines, watching, reading articles and updates. Despite the initial lack of enthusiasm, Destynnie was determined not to give up on PolePedia, and pivoted away from the wiki in favour of a traditional blog.
PolePedia pushed on and furthered the enrichment of their resources, collaborating with experts, guest posting, publishing product reviews, and celebrating everyday pole dancers, all with help from the community.
In the year after, their online community increased dramatically in number, leading to more people coming out to add their voice, starting conversations, asking questions, giving suggestions, and celebrating each other.
This has all brought PolePedia closer to its vision and aided the expansion of its library of resources where every pole dancer can add their voice.
Breaking off From Silence
As more people joined, it gave Destynnie a glimpse of just how unique the community really is; that despite the critics, the pole dance community is no longer a place for the tongueless.
It is a place that is earning acceptance in the mainstream world.
It is a place where the bold, opinionated, and outspoken gather.
It is a place where people feel free to be who they truly are.
It doesn’t matter what gender preference or skin colour you have, or what race you belong to. Destynnie believes this community has become a vanguard, standing up for the pole dance art form, and providing a shelter where pole dancers can grow, work with, and look after one another. It is a space where pole dancers can talk, ask questions, and encourage each other; a home for people who celebrate each other’s victories regardless of how big or small they are.
Diversity and the Pole Community
In the past, beginners would have given up on pole dancing due to the lack of knowledge and support. With PolePedia calling for a better world for pole dancers, it is all a different story now.
The pole community, as Destynnie puts it, is not your average one. Especially in this day in age where discrimination is always sneaking around to try and choke us back into becoming the voiceless that we once were, it is important to stick together and spread diversity awareness.
Destynnie believes that the first step to spread awareness is to be open and willing to learn about issues yourself and to remove patronage from studios and institutions who don’t support diverse values. She urges us to speak out against studio owners who make racist comments and show pole instructors how they can better accommodate more of their fellow pole enthusiasts.
As for companies, she hopes to see more brand ambassadors bringing pride into the community. She urges them to show the community more diversity by featuring more men and women, from fair to dark and copper-skinned models of all different races and sizes. Likewise, she believes that all pole dancers should no longer be afraid to take the spotlight, tagging brands in their social media posts and embracing their true, expressive pole styles.
Destynnie is calling for diversity to stay. She shared how she feared that, when all the riots surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement dies down, that we will forget. She hopes that we do not. Destynnie calls for us to all make conscious efforts in choosing the brands and businesses we patronize.
May our awareness stay and see that we support institutions who move the progress of the diversity movement forward.
Spreading the Love for Pole
With so much going on now, and so many adjustments to keep up with the new normal, Destynnie is glad that she chose pole dancing years ago.
The pole dance community has grown so much, and she cannot wait to see what’s in store for PolePedia’s future.
One of her goals this year is to make safe pole dance information more easily accessible, whether it’s at home, or in the studio. Destynnie looks forward to making new connections within the community and plans to keep the pole family united for many more years to come.
**Learn more about PolePedia by following them on Instagram:@polepedia
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