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Row as schoolchildren aged 7 to 16 taught to pole dance

By The Siberian Times reporter
05 April 2016

Petition fails to ban kids' championship as an event involving sex abuse or encouraging 'child striptease'.

Participants are banned from performing in shoes with heels and unbound hairs. Picture: Vostokmdia

These pictures show nine girls from the Magic Pole Championship-2016 in Khabarovsk, the first time such young competitors have taken part. The event provoked an advance bid to ban it from Russians with a petition calling for signatures 'against child striptease'.

Activists claimed the show could provoke sex crimes against those under 16. Initiator of the petition Alexander Kovalev said: 'Due to the surge of paedophilia in the Khabarovsk region in 2015, we think it is unacceptable to hold such activities because it will attract paedophiles and people prone to this.'

Pole dance


 Pole dance


Pole dance


Pole dance

'This is a kind of sport and a pole is only sports equipment here. The children use it to perform a variety of stands, somersaults, splits and other acrobatic elements.' Pictures: Vostokmdia, DVhab 

Only 273 signed the ban call. But organisers said there were strict rules for children being trained in pole dancing. Participants are banned from performing in shoes with heels and unbound hairs. And children are forbidden to use erotic movements and postures.

Organiser Anastasia Budnikova told Vostokmedia there was nothing 'erotic' in the dances by young students. 'The problem is that most of the spectators got used to pole dances as mainly erotic, but the performances of our young students are not of this kind,' she said. 

Pole dance


Pole dance

Julia Leonova, 7: 'I was very nervous but I liked it.' Pictures: Studio Krylia, DVhab

'This is a kind of sport and a pole is only sports equipment here. The children use it to perform a variety of stands, somersaults, splits and other acrobatic elements.'

Coach Tatyana Nekrasova said: 'We act completely officially. We have written permission from their parents. They express consent that their children participate in sports on the pole and take part in competitions. Of course, we do not promote paedophilia or corruption in any way.'

The Pole Sport Union has more stringent criteria than other sports. 

Pole dance


Pole dance


Pole dance


Pole dance


Pole dance

 'We do not see this as something vulgar, it's the same acrobatics.' Pictures: Vostokmdia

The youngest competitor was Julia Leonova, 7, is involved into pole dance just for five months, and taking part in the championship was the first major achievement for her.

She said: 'You need just two or three months to learn how to perform the basic elements. It is not very difficult if you are practicing all the time and don't miss. I was very nervous but I liked it.'

Her mother said: 'We do not see this as something vulgar, it's the same acrobatics. My daughter is developing in every sense. She is trained by coaches who graduated the schools of sports and ballroom dancing.'

Comments (5)

If it's such a good dance form, where are the males? I mean, they sign up for ballet, jazz and hip-hop. I've seen your nation's great dancers and highly appreciated them. This reminds me of beauty pageants. Instead of decking them out in swim suits, they now wear fitness clothes and they try to tell us it's all about education. Oh please....it's still about standing there and looking good. If you're a kid, there are wonderful activities to be done with a pole, such as bar work in gymnastics. I have nothing against stripping (or exotic dancing, as they call it here), but they are the people who pole dance. As to the previous comments, somebody called them "lovely women." They are girls, and that's the issue with having them perform on a pole.
Sid Finster, British Columbia, Canada
15/10/2016 18:00
3
0
Lovely women...... Russia is number 1
Cody, USA
08/10/2016 18:55
1
1
Wow...... Nice
Cody , USA
08/10/2016 18:50
0
0
maybe you than also should not publish of kids pole dancing. might also attract pedos. i mean, it is very important to be aware what is going on around us. and it IS a sick world outside. but if one wants one can see erotic and sex everywhere. what about the kids dancing with these long colored bands?
Benedikt, Moscow
06/04/2016 18:58
2
1
As a mother (and daughter who undoubtedly caused my own parents sleepless nights), I understand both perspectives. The pole is sport equipment and acrobatics. The danger of attracting sexual predators is very real given what most people think of as pole "dancing". I hope everyone will continue to be very careful in how this activity is approached so people can particpate as acrobatics and at the same time, keep very careful watch for anything that would indicate the wrong people are becoming interested.
Pamela Tetarenko, League City, USA
05/04/2016 20:13
10
1
1

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