Female Pole Dancer - How many Calories? Female Pole Dancer - How many Calories?

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Thread: Female Pole Dancer - How many Calories?

  1. #1
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    Default Female Pole Dancer - How many Calories?

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    Hey Robert,

    a female client of mine starts her Novice Linear Progression today and I‘m not sure how many calories she should eat.

    Age 32
    Hight 165 cm / 5ft4
    Weight 55 kg / 121 lbs
    Skinny, not much muscle

    Starting weights for today:
    Squat 25 kg / 55 lbs
    Press 15 kg / 33 lbs
    Deadlift 40 kg / 88 lbs

    She never trained with barbells before. So all newbie gains should be available.

    She started pole dancing 9 month ago and now wants to get stronger fast and gain some muscle in order to become a better and maybe some day competitive pole dancer.

    So the goals are: More strength, more muscle.

    The „problem“ is: She has to stay as lean as possible and can‘t afford to put on much fat because it would ruin the pole dance astethics.

    So maybe lean 58 or 59 kg (128-130 lbs) would be perfect in the long run.

    The various calorie calculating formulas say that her maintenance calories with pole dancing + Novice Progression are about 2170.

    How much calories should she eat now during her NLP in order to put on some (as lean as possible) muscle mass and increase her strength?

    2300-2500? I‘m not sure what surplus would be enough, not enough or too much for her goals.

  2. #2
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    This is interesting. How often does a pole dancer compete? What are they judged on?

    I'd say if she is at 2300-2500 calories, with half from carbs she'll do just fine both on stage and under the bar.

  3. #3
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    I think they are judged on athletic and maybe also artistic performance similar to gymnasts. There are different levels of difficulty as in beginner moves, intermediate moves and quite complicated advanced stuff which requires a lot of strength.

    She doesn‘t compete yet (she only started 9 months ago) and I‘m not sure what exactly her pole dance goals are for the future besides becoming really good at it.

    But she practices 2-3 times per week and has a rather professional and disciplined mindset + work ethic about it and from what I‘ve seen pole dance is absolutely no joke and pretty tough / physically demanding.

    She‘s probably the only pole dancer on the planet that has ever tried a barbell linear progression for the sport, since what I‘ve seen so far no one else seems to be doing it. The only videos you can find regarding strength training for pole dancers is the usual body weight stuff like planks etc. and strengthening exercises on the bar/pole itself. No heavy squats, presses and deadlifts to be seen.

    This reminds me of the interesting talk that Rip had with the Golfer on his podcast. In Golf also no one really seems to realize yet that getting stronger is absolutely crucial. Or at least they are pretty slowly waking up to it.

    Pole dance should be even worse because it‘s completely dominated by women and heavy barbell training won‘t probably be the first thing that comes to mind for a young woman who wants to be good at pole dancing.

    Yes, pretty interesting! I am excited to see where this’ll take her and what her progress will be like over the next weeks and months.

    How many grams of protein would you recommend for her at her current bw of 120 lbs when 130 lbs is the goal?

    120-150 grams?

  4. #4
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    So she is a novice at both strength training and pole dancing? She just needs to train both for now, she'll be fine. 120 grams of protein should be just fine for her.

  5. #5
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    Update after 14 weeks of linear progression and question about programming:

    Numbers:

    Age: 32 >> 33
    Hight: Surprisingly still 165cm / 5ft4. Bummer
    Weight: 55 kg >> 56,5 kg (goal was to stay lean for pole dancing)
    Diet: 2300-2500 calories and 105-120 g protein every day
    Consistency: Didn´t miss a single workout, bought equipment for Corona
    Recovery: Sleep wasn´t always the best and she had some stress in her private life

    Weights:

    Squat: 25 kg (3x5 meaning "3 sets of 5 reps") >> 60 kg (1x3) + two 53 kg backoff sets of 5
    Press: 15 kg (3x5) >> 25 kg (1x3) + four 23 kg backoff sets of 3 (presses twice per week)
    Deadlift: 40 kg (1x5) >> 87 kg (1x3) + one 78,5 backoff set of 3
    Bench: 25 kg (3x5) >> 34 kg (5x3) (only started benching in week 5 and benches once per week)
    Chins: Started with 10+ reps on assistance bands >> Now does BWx7,5,5 without bands

    We followed Matt Reynolds´ MED changes theme of milking LP through micro loading, then (for squats) wednesday light day and (instead of deadlift) chins, then 5x3 instead of 3x5, then top/backoff sets. Maybe she still has 2 workouts of deadlifts and the top/backoff-option for bench press in her but everything is pretty much at the limit and we called LP done today and next week she starts with a 4 day split.

    Her goals for the rest of 2020 are:

    • Getting stronger for pole dance
    • Reaching 100x3 or at least 100x1 deadlift in maybe 2 months
    • Staying lean, gain around 3 kg of muscle (mainly on legs + butt) without fat
    • No crazy visible muscle gain in arms and shoulders
    • Keeping feminine pole dancer physique, so 150 kg deadlift won´t probably be necessary or might even be counterproductive

    How´s this 4 day split for her goals?

    Tue
    - Bench Top Set of 3 PR + 4 Backoff Sets of 3 @90%
    - Press 3x5
    - Chins BW or maybe even weighted chins
    - Accessory upper body stuff for strength: Pole specific strength exercises, abs, handstand etc.
    (she has a pole at home)

    Wed
    - Deadlift Top Set of 3 PR + 1 Backoff Set of 3 @90%
    - Squat 3x8
    - Hip Thrusts heavy 3x6
    - Accessory lower body stuff for hypertrophy & cosmetics: Lunges, calves etc.

    Fri
    - Press Top Set of 3 PR + 4 Backoff Sets of 3 @90%
    - Bench 3x5
    - Chins BW or maybe even weighted chins
    - Accessory upper body stuff for strength: Pole specific strength exercises, abs, handstand etc.

    Sat
    - Squat Top Set of 3 PR + 2 Backoff Sets of 5 @90%
    - Deadlift 3x5
    - Hip Thrusts light 3x10
    - Accessory lower body stuff for hypertrophy & cosmetics: Lunges, calves etc.

    Would love to hear your insights and how to continue. Have a nice weekend!

  6. #6
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    Hey Robert,

    quick question. 7 months in she´s now at:

    BW 58kg
    Press 28x3
    Bench 40x3
    Deadlift 90x1 and 88x3
    Squat 60x2

    Everything progresses slowly but steadily EXCEPT her Squats. She had several Saturday sessions now where she couldn´t do 60x3 or progress further towards 70 kilo. We also tried one deload week at 50% and two backups to around 54 or 55 kilos but she still couldn´t break through the 60 barrier and seems to get weaker only on squats.

    Could it "just" be the sleep and stress factor mentioned below or does she need something else? How can it be that she gets weaker on squats but progresses normally on other lifts? Her technique is pretty solid and the bar path even improved lately.

    Program: 4 day split mentioned in the post above
    2500 calories a day
    120 g protein
    Squat technique pretty solid
    Doesn´t miss workouts
    Sleep not optimal
    Has quite a lot of stress in her life

    What should she do? Mix in a few weeks of hypertrophy training for squats for fun? Failing heavy squat reps every Saturday is not the most fulfilling and motivating thing as you might imagine.

    Would love to hear your insights and how to continue!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
    The various calorie calculating formulas say that her maintenance calories with pole dancing + Novice Progression are about 2170.
    I'm curious, where did you get a number for the caloric maintenance effects of the novice progression? I'm just curious how you calculated that, if there's some number out there I've managed not to find until now.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommanderFun View Post
    I'm curious, where did you get a number for the caloric maintenance effects of the novice progression? I'm just curious how you calculated that, if there's some number out there I've managed not to find until now.
    We used the Mifflin St. Jeor formula, which factors in age, weight, hight and activity level. The activity level of course is more of an educated guess than exact science and needs to be dialed in through trial and error.

  9. #9
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    @Robert

    Maybe also the Wednesday Squat session interferes with her recovery till Saturday? She currently does 4 sets of 8 with 45 kilos on Wednesday after heavy Deadlifts and some of these sets are pretty hard.

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    She's doing quite fine. Maybe going from 3 x 8 to 2 x 8 or 3 x 5 on Wednesday would give her some more recovery while still keeping her squatting. Eventually volume has to come down as intensity increases.

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