Author: Beth Flory, Co-Owner, Pole Kisses LLC, October 4, 2023
Did you know that our name Pole Kisses means pole bruises? If you got “kissed” by the pole, you have sustained a nice purple bruise. You can also be kissed by the aerial hoop, silks, and bungee. My stomach looked like it had been run over by a car when Rosy and I took bungee instructor training! In this post, I am going to give you some tips to help you recover from pole kisses.
I am not a medical professional but have had a lot of pole and bungee kisses. Recovering from pole kisses (aka bruises) typically involves allowing your body time to naturally reabsorb and repair the damaged blood vessels beneath the skin. While there is no way to make a bruise disappear instantly, besides really good makeup, you may be able to speed up the healing process and alleviate discomfort using some of the methods below.
Friction between your skin and the pole is the main reason for bruising. As you grip the pole and perform various moves and spins, your skin rubs against the chrome surface. This friction can cause minor skin abrasions, leading to bruising over time. Second, certain pole dance moves involve applying pressure to specific points on the body, such as the inner thighs, armpits, or hips. The combination of pressure and friction at these points can lead to bruising. Lastly, when you’re new to pole dancing, you may not have developed the calluses or resistance to pole-related bruising.
Remember, you have not yet learned the proper technique that more experienced dancers have. As you progress and build strength and resilience in your skin, bruising may decrease. Don’t be too hard on yourself! Even the most experienced pole dancers may get a juicy bruise after learning a new trick or when practicing for a competition or professional performance.
Rest and Elevate: Rest the affected area as much as possible, especially during the first 48 hours. Elevating the bruised area above the level of your heart can help reduce swelling and promote blood circulation. Who needs a better reason to lay on the couch and prop up those feet?
Cold Compress: Applying a cold compress or ice pack to the bruised area for 15-20 minutes at a time during the first 48 hours can help reduce swelling and minimize the size of the bruise. This also feels amazing on a sweltering 115 degree summer day in Las Vegas. Reusable hot and cold therapy gel packs are a wonderful item to have on hand, as you can freeze one pack for use on bruises and heat up the other for aching muscles.
Warm Compress: After the initial 48 hours, applying a warm compress or heating pad to the bruised area can help increase blood flow and aid in the healing process. Not as fun to do during Vegas summers, but it is a good thing we have AC.
Arnica Gel or Cream: Over-the-counter arnica gel or cream can be applied topically to the bruise to help reduce inflammation and speed up healing. I have found Arnica at Sprouts, Whole Foods, and CVS. Follow the product’s instructions for application. I also found this Skintensive Bruise Cream that contains both Arnica and Vitamin K that has 4.3 stars with almost 2500 reviews! Regarding Vitamin K…
Topical Vitamin K: Some people find that topical vitamin K creams or ointments may help. This one I have not personally tried, but the internet said so, so it must be true, right? If any of you swear by this remedy, please let me know.
Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers: This one is a no brainer. Non-prescription pain relievers like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help manage pain and discomfort associated with the bruise. I try not to take pills too often, but sometimes they are necessary. This is especially the case after a particularly hard training session…or when I get the bright idea to take two classes in a row.
Compression: Wearing a compression bandage or wrap over the bruised area can help reduce swelling and provide support. One time my thigh bruises were so bad from pole sits; I wore tight bike shorts underneath my dress to provide compression. It did feel better! I also like to have compression bandages in my first aid kit, just in case a family member or friend twists an ankle or hurts their wrist.
Rest and Avoid Aggravation: Avoid strenuous activities that could further injure the area. Rest is crucial for allowing the body to heal. I know, I know, it is hard to skip aerial class because it is so fun. Sometimes we need to give our body a break! If you feel compelled to stay active, go for a nice walk in Sunset Park, hike at Red Rock Canyon, or swim at the local recreation center.
Protective Clothing: If the bruise is in a location where it could get bumped or injured further, consider wearing protective clothing or padding to prevent additional trauma. You should wear long leggings in aerial hoop and silks classes. Also, wear longer shirts and shorts in bungee class. We have padding available that can be shoved into the bungee harness to make it a little more comfortable and prevent future bruising. There is no shame in the pad game.
Remember that recovering from pole kisses (aka bruises) can vary depending on size and severity. Let me reiterate that I am not a doctor. While these methods can help accelerate healing and reduce discomfort, it’s important to consult a healthcare professional if you have concerns about a particularly severe or persistent bruise. This may indicate an underlying medical issue.
One could argue that the bruising and pain associated with aerial fitness is a beneficial life lesson. So many times, in life, we run from discomfort. In aerial fitness, we must lean into pain, in order to achieve the desired results. Change and discomfort have always gone hand in hand in my life. The times I embraced discomfort, rather than fought it, were the times I experienced the most growth. If your body is used to leaning into the discomfort in aerial class, maybe it will be a little easier to lean into that challenging work project or difficult decision. You can recover from your bungee and pole kisses, so let’s lean in together!
If you are in the Las Vegas area and would like to check out one of our pole dance, bungee, or aerial classes, check out our SCHEDULE. We also offer bachelorette and private parties! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for questions.