FORMER Warrnambool dancer Kristy Sellars is preparing to take home the crown of Miss Pole Dance Australia.
The Ballarat-based dancer won the Miss Pole Dance Victoria title in August.
Ms Sellars started pole dancing about five years ago when she decided she needed more skills as a dancer.
“I thought I was strong before I started,” she said.
“It works everything — your arms, core and upper body. You need acrobatic and performance skills.”
With a recent push to have pole dancing included in the Olympics, Ms Sellars said attitudes to the sport were changing.
“When I first started telling people I was doing pole dancing they’d say, so you’re a stripper,” she said.
“No, I’m definitely not. A lot of people are starting to understand what it is.
“It’s definitely a sport and one day it probably will be in the Olympics.
“I would just hope it didn’t lose its artistic side, to be able to express yourself.”
“It’s an amazing exercise which you’re doing with a group of girls. But there is still a stigma.”
Ms Sellars danced and taught in Warrnambool before starting her Ballarat business PhysiPole.
She will compete for the national title in Sydney on November 10 and will be in Warrnambool on October 6 for a workshop at Pole, Strength and Fitness.