History Of Pole Dancing
Activities which are at the root of pole dancing as we know it today, come from several source from around the world, and can be found throughout the course of history. One such example is the Indian form of physical training known as Mallakhamb. Mallakhamb is a strength training excersise generally practised by men which utilizes an iron pole called the stambha in India.
Another historical example of "pole dancing" from another far east culture dates back over 1000 years to ancient China. The ancient Chinese utilized this style of dance in a more acrobatic setting. Translated from Chinese, they called it "Pole Climbing". Pole Climbing is a physical sport requiring an athlete with impressive skill, strength, and balance to perform these graceful moves... Much like the pole dancers of today.
Folks in the United States will almost automatically correlate pole dancing as the erotic art performed in strip clubs. However, it's roots in the U.S. is not as a form of adult entertainment. It found it's introduction into American culture in the form of circus acts during the depression era. It slowly began to evolve as women generally were the preferred performers in this venue, and as the practice continued the dances became slowly more suggestive. In the 50's the transition became more evident as this form of dance became popular in the burlesque genre then morphing into the commonly connotated strip club scene it is known for in modern times.
Portrayal in Modern Media
Pole Dancing has been portrayed in modern media several times recently. An episode of Desperate Housewifes featured it, as well as an episode of The View. Rima Fakih, Miss USA 2010, attracted attention at the time because she had won a Pole Dance competition 3 years prior. Pole Dancing also has it's own print media form with magazines Free Spin, Vertical, and Pole Spin.