This past week, serendipity came to visit. Through a Facebook group for Kemptville Gardeners, I offered to trade a few plant clippings and I received a reply from a woman who may not have had plants to offer, but something bigger that I would never have been brave enough to attempt. I believe in adventure and always taking opportunities, so this is how my next article was inspired. I had the pleasure of meeting Stephanie Glandon, the founder of Sunshine Aerial Fitness. Stephanie holds many fitness and aerial certifications, including as one of the few Canadian Pole Sports and Arts Federation (CPSAF) Platinum certified level coaches. She has competed at the National and International level for Pole Arts and Pole Sport, and has coached athletes at National level competitions, one of whom won gold in 2020 for Pole Art.
She began offering lessons at J-Glow in 2017, and with the huge response to this activity, the classes filled up quickly. As a result, she decided to branch off and open her own studio. This was a grand new adventure with bad timing, as this was when Covid had shut the world down. This gave Stephanie an opportunity to get creative. She has turned her home into a temporary studio, and probably has the best six conversation pieces secured from her ceiling to her floors. Using her living room as a studio, and going without a dining room table for six months, Stephanie has created a temporary space. With her beautiful black lab as a greeter, she is able to run her classes and never have to worry about traffic!
Now, if you really appreciate fitness and fun, then I think pole dancing takes the prize. I have never considered pole dancing a work out until Stephanie’s Free introduction class. Her mission is to provide a safe, inclusive, and welcoming space for students to practice aerials and better their physical and mental health. This activity is for all levels, all ages, genders, and body types, focusing not only on the physical aspects of aerials, but the social and psychological benefits it has to offer as well.
“When you join Sunshine Aerial Fitness, you are getting more than a fitness facility, you are joining a wonderfully supportive community. You are joining a second home where you can do something positive for yourself”, Stephanie says.
A recommendation is to not compare yourself with anyone else, because the only person to know your body is yourself. Good thing, because there is not a muscle in your body that is not required when you are swinging from a pole! The class begins with a warmup from head to toe. Then the lesson starts with a few easier techniques that you can coordinate in either of two ways, Sporty or Sexy, and, either way, you begin to feel confident and better than any bowl of ice cream could ever let you feel.
As your hand grips the pole and you bring your knee up, you swing around with this big smile on your face, knowing YOU JUST DID THAT! The best part about the class is the friendships that are made with this new group of women who are wanting to get out and find their inner goddess. There is a common goal of confidence and a fun fitness routine. That is, until you lock your keys in the car and your mother stops in with your spare set and asks to watch you do a spin (Thank you Mom). This creativity from Stephanie has resulted in up to 10 classes a week, and she has currently had five beginner classes running out of her home.
The exciting news is that she will be opening a studio here in North Grenville at the Kemptville Mall. She will be able to accommodate bigger classes and offer a range of classes and activities. For more information, you can visit sunshineaerialfitness.ca, or visit the FB page, Sunshine Aerial Fitness Inc.