Hello! In the last two parts of articles on this topic, we discussed many problems that can lead to poor grip, palm-sweating when working on the pole. If you have not read part 1 and part 2 about sweaty palms in Pole Dance yet, be sure to do so. But for some pole dancers, even all of these recommendations together do not really help. We are talking about those who really have hyperhidrosis to one degree or another. But I can say for sure that recommendations work even for these people, making it easier to work on the pole. If you follow them regularly, then your hands will be much better at holding onto the pole, it is a fact. Step by step, you can first do one or two tricks without wiping the pole, then a long combination, and then a whole dance. Nevertheless, in this article, we will consider several recommendations that may be suitable for pole dancers with hyperhidrosis.
So, this is the fourth problem, probably the most discussed and important.
It even has a specific medical name, and it is HYPERHIDROSIS — increased sweating, primarily in palms, and feet. That’s when the most common mistake of pole dancers arises — diagnosing themselves with «hyperhidrosis» when in fact they have one of the above problems or a combination. Please do not complain about your hyperhidrosis in heat or when you just started practicing on a pole, and do not confuse the disease with poor grip strength. First of all, only a doctor can diagnose the disease at any stage. By the way, hyperhidrosis varies from light moisture only in certain situations to completely wet hands. But I will not go into details about the disease and all its stages and peculiarities. Even the weakest stage of hyperhidrosis interferes with training on the pole very much.
How do you understand whether your problems with sweaty hands are due to a disease (even in the weakest stage)? With hyperhidrosis, your hands may sweat in any situation, even when you are not worried. I will say more — they can be moist even in the calmest and meditative state — for example, when doing yoga or «sand painting». Another indicator is that almost all magical pole grip products will not work for you — others say “Oh miracle, I put t on my hands and everything is perfect! Dry for 2 hours!” With hyperhidrosis, hands can be moist even after magnesia or any other miracle remedy after 30 seconds. Of course, it is common for pole dancers to panic in this situation. But the most interesting thing is that panic only worsens the situation. Hyperhidrosis is not only a physiological problem (which, as the doctor told me, is closely related to the innervation of the cervical spine nerve endings… or something like that). First of all, sweating hands is a psychological problem — especially for a pole dancer for whom a lot depends on hand grip — the ability to perform complex elements, the ability to perform, and generally comfortably train on the pole. Therefore, calmness and faith in one’s own strength and hands will do you good.
It’s easy to talk about staying calm but it’s difficult to put it into practice when you are concerned about the problem of hyperhidrosis. Since I myself have this trouble, I perfectly understand everyone who has difficulty with grip. I will briefly talk about my experience, maybe it will be useful to someone. In the first years of Pole Dance classes, I wiped the pole and hands after every single attempt of any movement: the simplest spin, pole exercises, any element. During the dance at the end of the class, I literally did not part with a rag and did not keep up with the teacher because of this. I could only perform with gloves on.
Then competitions in our city were announced where it was not an option to compete in gloves, I started to panic. I really wanted to participate but with my hyperhidrosis, it was not real. Then I went to the doctor. I will say right away that everything that they did to me, in my opinion, did not help. Maybe it did mostly morally. They did some sort of back procedure and irradiated my hands with something. I was not feeling any effect, and the competitions were getting closer. Then I began to ask pole dancers who faced this problem and how to solve it. One girl shared that she used pharmacy products, which I talked about in the first part of the article — DryDry and Teymurov’s ointment. Then I bought these products, began to use them daily, and I began to work on the grip strength at the same time. After some time, I felt a slight improvement. Then I stopped attending procedures (which cost a lot of money) and continued to go my own way — used products, worked with the expander , and adjusted the performance completely to my grip ability.
I’ll tell you a little more about what it’s like to work on performance with hyperhidrosis. This is when at every moment you need to make sure that there is still some grip with the pole beside the palms. So, I began to constantly use the forearm support, elbow grip, armpit grip. I removed all the elements where I could only hold on with my hands (in the future I even learned how to do Flag but only as the very first element of the number and only from the floor). I worked on the performance in different conditions: on a dirty pole, with unwiped hands, when there was a lot of humidity. It was important for me that even with a terrible grip, with sweaty palms, I would at least not fall from the pole. And I have achieved this. So, I performed at these competitions without gloves. Immediately before my turn, I rubbed my hands with a cloth slightly moistened with alcohol non-stop.
Later I learned to use props with a hidden cloth. For example, in Shaman’s performance, there was a cloth on the back of the tambourine. And this allowed me to first perform a little choreography, and only then climb onto the pole. But the flag was still the first element for me. I also had a performance with a pillow, which I “squeezed” in the middle of the performance, as if adjusting it before going to bed to wipe my hands.
I trained and performed this way for many years. And only my last competition in Mexico went a different way. It turned out that at those competitions there were several permitted grip enhancers, and I bought one of them, which really began to help me. Of course, it was not perfect, but I realized that I can have a good grip for up to 4 minutes. I used this tool along with all the recommendations that I spoke about before. In particular, about a month before the competition, I worked with the expander for 5-10 minutes every day. I think all of those things together helped me.
I do not know if it is possible to purchase this product in a country other than Mexico, but it is Force Grip. Let me remind you that we are all different, and it may not work as well for you but if you have a chance, I would recommend trying it. It is liquid magnesia, but it contains rubber, which I think gives a good grip, while alcohol and magnesia slightly dry the skin.
I’ll tell you about another way to cope with hyperhidrosis, which the doctor offered me, but I refused. It is Botox in the palms. I found a girl who had this procedure done and agreed to share her experience. She said that the procedure was painful: 30-40 injections were performed on each palm with minimal anesthesia. Given the thick skin of the pole dancer, it was more painful than for those who do not train on the pole. The effect was excellent — the palms did not sweat at all, but not for long. The effect of this procedure is individual, doctors promise dry skin for up to six months. And the girl who shared with me had a good grip for only 2 weeks. The cost of the procedure at the time when she did it (2014) was about $ 280.
Which method to use is always your choice. Personally, I would not agree to Botox, primarily because I am not interested in improving grip temporarily. Although it may work for someone, for example, before important competitions.
I recommend that you try the recommendations that I mentioned in all three articles, apply them on a regular basis, and not once or twice. And watch the effect. It will not necessarily be instantaneous, but permanent. Of course, if you continue to follow the recommendations. So be patient and act.
The last method that I will talk about is mental. I recommend that you think that you will have (or already have) a good hand grip. Believe that you can hold onto the pole firmly and securely. Think positively, follow the recommendations and you will succeed! Proven! And although I still very often (usually more often than my students) wipe the pole, I learned how to live, train, and even perform with it. Though not with perfect comfort, as it would be without hyperhidrosis but I was able to go through this experience, and now I can share it with you. I hope this article series has been helpful to you. Maybe you know some other ways to improve the grip on the pole? Write about it in the comments. And share your experience, what is your situation with hand grip?
Let me remind you that you can strengthen your grip and get my constant support as a coach at the Pole Dream online school. I personally check the videos of all the students, we improve the technique, the purity of performance, work on both sides. Sign up in the school now, places are limited.
And if you don’t have a pole at home, then join the online Power Marathon — there we also strengthen grip, improve posture, balance, gain strength for pole tricks. By the way, it takes just 10-15 minutes a day.
I wish you a great pole grip and all the best!