This week I got the opportunity to visit Diamond Class Pole Fitness in North Hobart and chat with the amazingly talented Bec Collins AKA Bebe Sparkle!
Tell us about Diamond Class Pole Fitness?
Ooooo there’s so much to tell! I think if you were to ask this question to any of our students they would say ‘ Diamond Class has changed my life, it’s built my body and mind confidence, I’m fit, strong, toned and going to classes is something I really look forward to as the highlight of my day/week’ .
This is what we hear from our students all the time. They see coming to the studio as it’s a positive, encouraging and confidence building and super fun environment. Most start classes with us because they want a fun way to get fit, which it certainly is, but most find it changes the way they think about exercise and it becomes an amazingly positive lifestyle change for them!
I’ve seen ladies transform from being out of shape, with low self esteem, ladies that are unhappy in their every day life that after a few months at Diamond Class become strong, confident, fit women who take control of the rest of their lives making confident positive lifestyle changes. It’s super rewarding to see and to be part of 🙂
We are based in North Hobart and have a large studio with a welcoming reception area that has retail and pole dance magazines, drinks and healthy snacks. Students sometimes just hang out in reception and watch the monitor with pole videos and get inspired!
We have 2 large studio rooms and 14 x high poles that go on either static or spin modes. In the studio rooms we have wall mirrors right across , coloured lights, fitness equipment including rollers, kettle bells, skipping ropes and more. Picture a dance studio , just with poles and fitness equipment and a lot of sparkly character!
We have amazing instructors who are highly trained and experienced who teach our structured level courses with new routines that they choreograph for every course. Most our instructors have 1 or more titles from Miss Pole Dance Tasmania and Tas Pole Fitness Championships making them the top in the field of Pole Dance in Tasmania.
We have classes to suit everyone, any shape or size, fitness level, age and gender… yep we have a class called Boystime too that my fiancee and male Tassie champion, Sam takes.
Our most popular are our 8 week pole courses where students learn first how to walk around the pole and gradually build strength over the 8 weeks for spins, climbs and eventually upside down! The levels go from Beginner up to advanced and although some people come in quite strong and fly through the levels, most come in with no strength or experience and it takes approx 1.5 years to reach our highest level but at the end of their first 8 wk course they are already doing impressive looking moves. We have heaps of casual classes too! All about the abs, Pole Fit, Stretch and Flex just to name a few and of course our most popular casual class currently… Bootay Fit which is a super fun twerkout class that is changing the shape of ladies behinds making them strong, toned and bootylicious!
We also specialise in the most fun hens parties and girly workshops. We run Student showcases, an in house competition and we have a performance troop ‘The Diamonds of Polesque’ who perform regularly at many events in Tasmania and their own produced events.
Do people need to be a certain age or fitness level to participate?
Not at all! We have students from 12 years old to 65 and I have even taken private classes for a 75 year old lady who wanted to build more strength for her bushwalking! Actually a very common misconception is that people think they need to be strong to start pole dancing which isn’t the case at all. At Diamond Class we teach from absolute scratch and most our students can’t hold their own body weight when they begin and most are un-coordinated and quite nervous. That’s what we are here for, to teach our students how to build the strength and become more co-ordinated. I couldn’t hold my own body weight on the pole at all when I started… people never believe that, but it’s true, you only get good at what you practice!
Also on the topic of age… pole dance attracts a lot of ex dancers and gymnasts because they are considered ‘too old’ for these. With pole dance however, there are a lot of very successful competing pole dancers that are over 40 and there is even a champion pole dancer in America who is 65 years old and she is super strong and fit with the body of a 20 year old! Joanna Littlewood that was on Australias Got Talent is in her 40’s and has children and she is amazing!
You also don’t have to loose weight to start (unless you are over 100Kg as that’s the max our poles can take), you don’t need to get fit or gain strength to start… this will all happen with our classes!
What made you get into Pole Dancing?
I was a gym junkie, I always felt great when I exercised but I went through periods of being unmotivated and being sick of the repetition of my workouts that I was only doing to get fit and fell good which is great don’t get me wrong, but I wasn’t thinking I can’t wait to get that 10th pull up and take a pic and show everyone and maybe I will put a routine together with it like I do with pole dancing!!!
A friend of mine asked me if I wanted to pole dance and I didn’t hesitate in saying YES!
It’ sounded like fun and something that I could be sexy with if I wanted or at least a super fun way to exercise! I had no idea how much I was going to love it!
How did DC Pole Fitness start?
I had no interest in becoming one of those stressed out business owners and never set out to start a pole dance studio… it pretty much chose me! I did a few beginner classes with a lady that used to teach at the Queens Head Hotel and quickly found I wanted to learn soooooo much more so I bought my own pole and saved to do classes in Melbourne and Sydney to learn as much as I could. I also was performing pole dance as part of my burlesque routines with a troop I put together. Before I knew it, all my friends wanted me to teach them and I found myself doing lessons for them at home. This was quickly followed by friends of my friends and I found myself having to purchase more poles and structuring courses and routines to start charging for my teachings.
Word got out and it wasn’t long before I needed to hire a space so I hired upstairs Hotel Soho where I would unpack my poles from the car, take them up the 2 flights of stairs and set up each night and reverse at the end of the night. I think packets of freddos got me through as I was still working at Priceline as my day job at the time!
Less than 2 years at Soho I could finally afford a permanent studio space and found one in Liverpool st in the city where I lived out the back. After another 2 years I built the business up to the point were there were too many students for the space so found a new home for the studio in Burnett St North Hobart. I’d also met my now fiancee Sam by this time, he proposed to me on stage at Miss Pole Dance Tasmania 2013 while I was emceeing! Sam is now my business partner and is equally as passionate about pole dance.
It’s now been 2 years in the current space and all is going amazingly. It’s been a crazy amount of hard work and those close to me know I never stop working, but I am super passionate about pole dance and being able to offer Tassie polers the same, if not better opportunities that have been available on the mainland for mainland polers for years. I could never have imagined that pole dance would be my full time job and that I would have such a successful studio!
What’s your number 1 health & fitness tip?
Becoming fit and healthy needs to be a lifestyle change, not a diet or a stint at the gym, but a complete lifestyle change and why would you do it any other way than something you will enjoy and love doing!
It is easy to see the passion Bec has for creating opportunities for her students. She is currently running a Pozible campaign to raise the funds needed to renovate her studio to make it more suitable for performances and also raise the ceiling height so they can install higher, competition standard poles.
You can checkout their campaign at pozible.com/dcpoledancecompspace
Be sure to check our the Diamond Class Pole & Fitness team at the expo!