Updated: Jan 18
GET A GRIP! & A HANDLE ON SWEATY PALMS.
When it comes to Pole Dancing, we all need to GET A GRIP!
It’s true - every person who engages in this fun and artistic endeavor must deal with their skin adjusting to the pole - and adjusting to their sweat.
The good news is that it’s totally normal, and there are things we can do
and products we can use!
Did you consider that sweating is a normal & natural response when your brain is:
Engaged with LEARNING something new
FIRING in our ‘emotional centers’
When we feel NERVOUS or ANXIOUS about things
When we are working hard while working out -
Hmm, do any the above mentioned sound familiar with learning Pole?
When we realize this, we can take comfort in knowing as we cultivate our skills and with practice, sweating tends to lessen, and may even subside. Your glands will not be as active when we are used to the tasks at hand (pun intended).
Sometimes it’s not so simple! The truth is - Just like your own uniqueness of movement - Every BODY is unique in her chemical makeup and physiological responses.
Sometimes we need a little (or A LOT) of help with getting us to STICK!!
My wish is to provide some clarity, helpful tips and encouragement to find PATIENCE -
I understand this can be one of the most frustrating things!
Generally, POLE DANCING requires PATIENCE -
PATIENCE in GAINING STRENGTH
PATIENCE in GAINING FLEXIBILITY
PATIENCE in IMPROVING FLOW AND GRACE
PATIENCE in OUR HANDS NOT BEING SO SWEATY -
or at least PATIENCE in trying different things to find what works!
“I feel like I have the strength, but I’m just so slippery!” :( :(
Some general TIPS -
1 - Wash your hands before class
Sound simplistic enough! However this small step will be a helpful starting point - avoid soap with moisturizers/added fragrances in them!
(Lush Activated Charcoal soap is a proven helpful recommendation).
*(It also helps me A LOT to have a water damp towel with me during practice as well - to wipe my hands and keep them clean during practice - layers of grip aide and sweat can make matters worse).
2 - Avoid putting oil/lotion to hands (or body)
ESPECIALLY THE SAME DAY BEFORE PRACTICE!
*Fine Print: Some people advocate for not applying lotion or oil AT ALL - (considering we are all different), I DO like a little moisturizer/oil on my skin (just not prior to class). The reason can be understood through an Ayurvedic principle - that if we “dry out” our skin too much - our skin doesn’t like it and we may produce MORE OIL OR MOISTURE as a result! -
Our skin wants to be balanced, and so using a gentle moisturizer or straight oil (almond, grapeseed, jojoba, vegetable glycerin are helpful examples - I like them at night AFTER practice - I think it helps my skin stay balanced).
3 - CAFFEINE
I know many of us that don’t want to hear about this, however caffeine is a STIMULANT -
it triggers the central nervous system, kick-starts adrenaline and cortisol, increases the heart rate and temperature - and to bring things back into balance your body will SWEAT MORE.
But maybe you just can’t say goodbye to your favorite brew? I like this blog for tips about different ways of preparation and other alternatives:
The following product list been compiled through my own personal experience,
as well as information gathered from other pole dancers.
Give these a shot - and please add your own tips in the discussion!
We appreciate your sharing what works!
The struggle is REAL and we are in this together!
Speaking of “Grip Aides”, some products are more helpful to hands, and some are catered to the body (NOT hands) -
Hands - These products absorb sweat and add a “tacky” feel to skin or pole -
Dry Hands - this alcohol based product is my personal favorite - it absorbs sweat, and provides a bit of a “tacky” feel or “stick” to the pole.
Great for a little extra tack, and is great for “mild-medium” sweaty hands.
Best applied by patting into hands (instead of rubbing), also may be applied (patted) onto the pole prior to skill practice for extra stick.
Best for hands - although may be helpful applied to feet or legs - but only if your legs are slippery because they feel “sweaty” - (if they are DRY and slippery, read below for other suggestions)!
Better Grip - Similar to Dry Hands, they have 2 formulations - one has lidocaine (numbing agent) and the other does not.
Sometimes it’s helpful to switch things up - Dry Hands users also like this product.
Mighty Grip - Actually has 2 different formulations - a liquid, and powder that you mix with a tiny bit of water, creating a paste - leave the paste on for a minute and gently wipe away excess - may apply another grip aid with it on top!
Dew Dry - Liquid, absorbs sweat and makes a good “tack” - you may also apply a bit of alcohol to keep it active throughout your practice! (And it's a Utah company :) ).
May layer on top Dry Hands
This one seems to be a bit of a learning curve, but for those that use it regularly LOVE IT!
Lush Activated Charcoal soap - Some Polers recommend using this product to wash their hands with prior to class - and throughout the day!
Clean hands prior to applying a grip aid or practice makes a big difference!
These following products are recommended for EXCESSIVELY SWEATY HANDS -
Tite Grip II - There is a Tite Grip I, but the “II” seems to be more popular with Polers!
Rub in a small amount like lotion, it is designed to absorb and stop producing sweat.
APPLY 30 - 60 MIN PRIOR TO CLASS - this one is good to apply before leaving your house on the way to a class.
DO NOT apply a pole or legs/body for grip.
Pole Gloves - Look like a sweet biker style with these babies! Tite Grip makes a good glove -
Some times this is the way to go - certainly for conditioning they are awesome!
**Carpe Hand - Antiperspirant lotion -
Similar to Tite Grip! (The line also has products for FEET, UNDERARMS, GROIN, BREAST)
Is Dermatologist recommended
**Certain Dri - Potent, Roll-On Antiperspirant -
Apply to palms at night
When you need more -
**Drysol - Prescription Needed -
Apply to palms at night, however this can be over drying and is not recommended for regular use - you must get a Dr. to sign off on this one!
**These 3 above products contain various amounts of aluminum - I see the internet telling me different things on this and the safety as it relates the amount contained in the product to apply to the skin -
Botox - OK OK, we are pulling out the big guns here - I don’t personally know anyone who has done this for hands, however I have heard of positive results with this suggestion.
We recommend trying EVERYTHING ELSE first - however this is something that can be injected into areas of the palms and paralyze the glands that produce sweat.
Cons - need a Dr. and - this can be very expensive and will need to be updated every several months to keep it active.
Body Grip Help -
Dew Point - My personal favorite as well - it was created and still made in Utah - as we are a dry climate that dries skin!
Spray directly onto skin - I will use the back of my hands to rub it in - but give it a sec to soak in!
DO NOT apply to palms - unless your palms are very dry!!
Vegetable Glycerin - This is a very affordable option, and most stores will carry this! Just mix with a little water and apply to your body - best to give it a few hours before practice (or apply the night before).
What other products or protocols have you had luck with? We’d love to hear!
We are all in this together and the struggle is REAL!
Products can easily be found online (of course) - here is what we have “on hand” to pick up at Moxy:
Dry Hands, Dew Point, Tite Grip II.
*Want some other products you love? Let us know!
A big THANK YOU to all the Polers in our community that have offered their
tips and favorite products!
Wishing you all the VERY BEST in your Pole adventures.
Here’s to sticking to what works! ;)
Love in Movement,
Emilee @em.valken,photo @nikkittyta