I was getting my daily Jezebel fix when I ran across an article about a British pole-dancing studio that came under fire for offering classes to kids. Despite the classes being more akin to gymnastics than readying young girls for the club, some in Britain are “outraged” that parents have signed their daughters up for the classes.

Aside from the thought of little girls swinging from the pole, another sticking point seems to be that the dance studio, JLN Pole Fitness, posts pictures of some of its students on Facebook.

The Daily Mail (a notoriously questionable British tabloid) reports “that parents and local authorities are distressed over the photos posted by JLN Pole Fitness.” However, as Jezebel points out, that of the hundrends of pictures on the dance studio’s Facebook page, the overwhelming majority are of high school aged girls and grown women.

Some parents have embraced the classes as just another form of exercise, like gymnastics, for their daughters. One mother, who had her seven-year-old’s birthday at the studio said:

I do not have a problem with it at all. It is nothing to do with lap dancing, it is gymnastics. It is not in the slightest bit sexual. 

I have put pictures of her on Facebook because she wants people to see what she can do. We wear short shorts and vest tops so we can grip the pole and they are not performing in front of anyone.

If she was doing gymnastics in a leotard or at a swimming gala in a costume, anyone could be watching and people don’t complain about that.

While another, who’s presumably never been to one of the kid’s classes, complained:

This concerns me greatly as I would not want my 13-year-old wandering round in hotpants and hanging upside down.

‘They advertise as being aerobics/gymnastics with a pole but if you see the pictures, you will see this is not the case. These pictures are also being posted across Facebook and this just invites child grooming.

While I understand the need to protect children against pedophiles and being viewed as sexual objects, if people deem pole dancing too grown-up for kids because of the outfits they wear, then the same logic could be applied to other sports where girls wear body-skimming clothing (hello gymnastics and ice skating). Or, we can just stop obsessing and sexualizing our youth by trying to read something into every little thing they do. I’m just saying.

But what do you think, Clutchettes and Gents…is there anything wrong with young girls taking pole-dancing classes?

Let’s talk about it! 

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  • Future Mrs. Banks

    Why on Earth would I want someone who is not old enough to get an apartment to dance on a pole? I wish any future child of mine would come and ask me some stuff like that. I’m grown and I still don’t want to tell my mother that I’m taking them. With all the other exercises for girls to do why would I put my child in something like this? Gymnastics, ballet, lyrical, tap, jazz, ice skating, hip-hop (age appropriate) maybe cheer leading but I still find that a little unpleasant if the girl isn’t in high school. Their called children for a reason.

  • MommieDearest

    If pole dancing is just exercise and helps children build their core, develop muscles, self-confidence, etc… then why are the classes only offered for little girls?

    As if toddler beauty pageants, the mini-woman clothes offered in the girls’ department and little high-heeled shoes isn’t enough, here comes pole dancing! The sexualization of children, speicifically girls, keeps rolling on.

    A kid can take karate, tai kwan do or yoga, or simply *gasp* go to the playground and get the same physical and athletic “benefits” of pole dancing.

    *smh*

  • These headlines in the press are rubbish, do you always believe these tabloids?? I dont teach any kind of dance at JLN as I told the very first reporter, I only spoke to a small local paper because they were asking about the photos on my fb page. There were 3 of which these girls come to class with their mum, mums wanted to show their friends the pictures. There is nothing wrong with the pictures either. I have not spoke to any other papers the whole story has gone mad!! Dont you realise it makes BIG MONEY for the press. There is no booty wiggles going on or anything of the kind, these are purely fitness classes, all this is crazy the story has gone world wide but yet not 1 person has come to see what all the fuss is about and check out the classes for themselves. I rec 5000 hits in one day on my website with 2 negative emails, 1 saying god will judge me, that is as bad as it gets because do your research check out my site it is fitness fitness fitness, and it is growing all over the world FAST!! Does anyone truely believe that any parent in the right mind would allow their daughter to behave like a stripper! Do you really think there are classes out there for this?? I cannot believe how many people believe the stories in the paper, the papers have even used images of seductive women on poles and printed them next to the articles to pull in the readers. Come on people surely there are 2 sides??

  • FSOPA

    ok its one thing for grown ass women to be sayin “oh i just wanted to get in shape” *cant roll eyes hard enough* but hey, people are gonna make fools of themselves no matter what i say, so i’m not gonna even get into that discussion. But to have a child pole dancing?!?!? that sounds like a plot from some horrible low budget movie made by a questionable director whose had more than a few accusations brought against him…. What’s harder to believe is that a PARENT said “sure, i’ll allow my daughter to get her stripper training in early! what’s the harm in that, it seems like great wholesome fun!” NO, NO, NO! This is his terrible dream, and i can’t wait to wake up and see that the world hasn’t really lost its got damn mind…