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Urban Girl Squad, headed by President & Founder Amanda Hofman, hosted yet another exciting event last night.

Held at S Factor on 23rd street, women were given a nearly two-hour Introductory Pole Dancing class. Teachers Ilov Grate and Alexia Komninos made everyone feel comfortable throughout the session.  Lights were dimmed, and with no mirrors in the room, I relaxed to the soft music.

I must admit that pole dancing has always interested me and it’s not because I hide a secret desire to be a stripper.  From glimpses I see seen on TV or in movies, many of the moves have a poetic elegance about them.  Unlike a typical ballet class, which is highly structured, pole dancing appeals to me because it focuses more on self-expression than technique.

The class included the classic S Factor Workout, S Walk, and “Firefly” pole trick.  The initial warm-up was something familiar, having danced myself for several years.  Then we all stood up, tossed our mats aside
and formed a circle walking around the studio in a sultry rhythm. I’ve been told by many that my normal, everyday walk is ridiculously fast, so you can imagine how strange it felt to be taking such slow, concentrated steps.

Despite my initial hesitation at attempting the “Firefly” pole move, I got over my fear rather quickly.  The trick is harder than it looks, but definitely fun once you succeed in twirling around the pole. Following this pole trick, we learned the beginning of the dance taught throughout level one classes.  Movements were slow, combining elements of ballet, yoga, Pilates, with a lot of sexy attitude.


By this point, I had released my inner vixen and was reveling in the new person I had discovered.  My bubble burst a few minutes later, when the instructors performed a level 6 routine.  My jaw immediately dropped upon witnessing the skills these two women possess.  Their enthusiasm and encouraging way of teaching has made me seriously consider making pole dancing a regular part of my week.

Class concluded with a Q&A session and brief talk with Urban Girl Squad leader, Amanda HofmanHofman started the community-based social group in January of 2008.  Since then, she continually brings women together by organizing a wide-range of events where members can meet new friends through common interests or unfamiliar activities, such as pole dancing.

Past events have included wine tastings, beauty and fashion nights, cocktail parties, and fitness classes.  Hofman is always coming up with unique experiences for women in NYC.  Up next on the calendar is Urban Girl Squad’s free Two-Year Anniversary Party, which will be held at the Ava Lounge Rooftop Bar.  To RSVP, visit their website, www.urbangirlsquad.com.

– Megan McDonough


About Urban Girl SquadUrban Girl Squad is a social group for women in their 20s and 30s who love to try new things, spend time with friends, and meet new people in New York City. Our events include food and wine tastings, beauty and fashion nights, dance and fitness classes, sports events, cocktail parties and more. We provide special, discounted access to the city — you’ll meet store owners and designers, taste gourmet food and drinks, receive personal attention from popular venues, and score some amazing gift bags. The welcoming atmosphere at our events makes it easy to attend on your own or with friends!

S Factor
235 W 23rd St
New York, NY 10011

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