Type: Static Pole, Spin Pole
Points of Contact: 3
The Basic Invert is a highly sought-after milestone in any pole dancer’s journey that unlocks a whole new world of amazing tricks. This may result in rushed achievement, laying a poor foundation for future movement, leading to many pole dancers revisiting their inverts later as they move into Aerial Inverts and Shouldermounts.
This move requires a lot of core strength and willingness to move the body upside down quickly, but with the help of invert prep, this can be accomplished safely and quickly.
How to Perform the Basic Invert
- Standing next to the pole, wrap your inside arm around the pole in a Stronghold Grip.
- Bring the outside hand directly over the inside hand, pulling the arm down and engaging the shoulder.
- Stick the booty in front of the pole and rest the hips on it in a Waist Pocket Hold.
- Tuck your knees to your chest and tilt the head back, looking back towards the wall and look to the floor underneath you. Extend your arms when you rotate the hips up.
- From here, you can extend the legs, pointing the toes and engaging the leg.
For most pole dancers, achieving a proper invert will take strength and coordination that we don’t normally have coming from normal life. In this video, Sophia will take you through a series of exercises to help you get into the proper invert form later.
Training for your invert on the floor is an excellent way to test your muscles, measure progress, and strengthen the muscles necessary to perform a standing Basic Invert, and later, a straight-leg or Chopper invert, where the legs are straddled the entire way up from the floor.
Floor prep for inverting is safe for first timers and experienced pole dancers alike. It is low impact, easy to follow, and gets you used to the basic body mechanics used in an invert. It will also help you get used to using the legs on the pole, which is an important step in inverted pole tricks.
- Never hang loosely from the arms. Always keep the shoulders down and engaged.
- Do not try to force the elbows to stay bent when you tilt your head backwards. Straighten the arms as you tilt backwards.
- Never kip-up or jump into your invert. This is a bad habit that can skip over engaging key muscles to help you in later pole progress. Kipping up expends more energy and can put a lot of unnecessary torque on key muscles. Generally, we recommend that pole dancers focus on floor prep and conditioning exercises for inverts until you can deadlift into your invert, or at least minimize how much you kip-up.
- When you straighten your arms to bring the hips up, never shift your hand grip or let go with your hands. Keep the hands on the pole at all times.
- Trouble Reaching the Pole with Feet: The tuck invert is a great place to start because you can tuck the knees up and then extend the legs, rather than starting with a straight-leg invert. In either case, your feet are not reaching for the pole, they are reaching past the pole. Once the feet have gone past the pole, then you can hook a kneepit onto the pole or wrap them in an inverted X-grip – or just come back down – whatever comes next for you.
- Not Enough Strength: If you have plenty of arm and back strength, but inverts are still proving difficult for you, then you might not have enough core strength to tuck the knees in far enough and hold it. Try going back to floor prep exercises.
- I Get Stuck Rotating: If you feel like you are getting “stuck” while you are rotating your body upside down, make sure that you are leading with your head and chest, looking down and to the back wall then the floor. This will help encourage rotation from the waist pocket and hip. Likewise, make sure that you are really pushing your hips up towards the ceiling when you draw the head back. The movement of the feet and knees coming up will help you lift your hips up, but it will require core strength.
- Arms Get Stuck: If your arms are getting stuck in an invert, or if you feel like there is a lot of strain on the arms, make sure you are straightening the arms completely when you are lifting the hips up.
For additional information on inverting from Sophia Minx, view an older article on How to Invert here.