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Bendy (as seen on Got to Dance 2012) is an innovative pole artist, acrobat, aerialist and hand balancer from the UK. Kate is 21 years old and trained as an acrobat from a young age. Since beginning pole she has won several pole fitness titles including the UK Professional Champion 2011, UK Amateur Champion 2010 and World Doubles Pole Runner up. She now teaches pole fitness masterclasses, performs at dance shows and circus gigs. Her aim is simple – to change negative perceptions of pole dancing… Interview with Bendy Kate by Joy Chan UPA: We all know you from watching you in “Got to Dance 2012,” how did you hear of the audition & what made you want to be a part of the show? Bendy Kate: My manager at the time saw the advert and asked me if id be interested in applying, the answer was easy…..YES PLEASE! From then on I was on a mission to change the general publics perception of pole dancing! UPA: How old were you when you first started training in handbalancing, lyra (hoop), pole, & silk (tissu’)? Bendy Kate: I have been handstanding ever since I could walk but hoop and silks I only picked up in the last year! It was all thanks to pole why I started circus skills – go pole! And now I work for a circus company in the UK and we travel world wide for amazing gigs. I have been doing pole for coming up to 3 years now, its the only hobby I will never get bored of! UPA: Do you also train in gymnastics or other forms of aerial dance, such as spanish web or trapeze? How often do you train? Bendy Kate: Yes I was a little gymnast when I was younger specialising in sports acrobatics. So basically i got to climb on people, handstand on them and somersault off them ๐Ÿ˜€ I didn’t know until recently about circus arts, i knew the circus existed but i didn’t even think about trying to get a job in one! I train pretty much every day either in acrobatics, pole, aerial or gymnastics and i also make sure I do cardio training once per week! I struggle to take a day off because my hectic schedule but I recommend to other performers and polers to have a rest day! UPA: What made you want to train in these forms? Bendy Kate: I took up gymnastics because my mum use to be British trampolining champion so she took me to trampolining but I got bored. So we tried gymnastics and I loved it and took to it really well. I took pole as they offered a free lesson where i lived in bristol and took to that even more naturally then gymnastics. On my first training session i was doing all sorts of crazy handstands on the pole and making up new spins because I didn’t know any! I took aerial up to compliment my pole training and ended up teaching my rope teacher to hand balance. It was then I got spotted by a circus company who asked me to audition for a place in their circus company and gave me the job! UPA: We recently saw your winning Doubles routine for Ms. Pole Dance UK 2012 that you did with your partner Sarah Scott. It was very creative & innovative! What made you two come up with those moves? Bendy Kate: Awww thanks! As it was Sarah’s first doubles experience and I had kind of bullied her into it (kidding) I was in charge of the routine. I made it up in my head in the car on the way to teach masterclasses and somehow the crazy combos worked in real life! woop! I wanted to do a robot theme because I thought it would suit Sarah’s style (because she’s one of the coolest pole dancers i know! haha) we came up with the dance choreography together and i took my inspiration for the new moves from silly ideas in my head ๐Ÿ™‚ UPA: Where do you see yourself in the future? Bendy Kate: I have big dreams for my future ๐Ÿ™‚ I would really like to be a circus performer in a West End Show in the near future for a year or so. Next I would like to go to Vegas to perform on the pole and/or doing aerial of acro in a cirque show over there! Inbetween my big goals I hope to keep inspiring others, smiling and being happy!! UPA: What can you tell the world, especially the critics, about pole dancing & aerial arts? Bendy Kate: Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it world! ๐Ÿ˜‰ UPA: Do you have any useful tips to fellow pole’r bears out there to help in their conditioning & continual practice; what words of advice can you give us? Bendy Kate: Haha pole’r bears!!! I love that!!! Well Pole’r Bears try supplement your training by taking up other forms of exercise (cardio, circus, kickboxing etc). Look after your body! If your injured rest and see a physio – thats an order. And BE YOURSELF (the most important advice) whether this is while training or performing always stay true to yourself! Learn more about Bendy Kate here! Click on the logo below to find out where you can take a workshop with Bendy Kate! Photobucket Photo by: Millie Robson Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket

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