When you watch any pole dancing routine, the words that would come to mind are sexy or graceful. Pain is not a word that you would associate with it.

However, to answer the question, “does pole dancing give you bruises?” Well, yes. If you are a beginner, you will find out that a lot of pain in the form of pole dance bruises is experienced before you can perform any dance gracefully!

Does Pole Dancing Give You Bruises? (SOLVED!)

Can You Get Bruises from Pole Dancing? Let’s Dive Deeper…

As previously mentioned, you can indeed get bruises from pole dancing – some people even refer to them as “pole kisses” – not sure I would go that far, though lol.

Because pole dancing mainly relies on grip and pressure to be able to stay on the pole, bruising and rubbing become part of the process. According to Natalie Roberts from Aradia, bruising and pole friction will become a regular feature on a beginner pole dancer’s body.

And, unlike in other activities where you can wear protective clothing to prevent injuries like these, covering up is not really something you can do when you pole dance. The skin contact is essential because you will rely on its natural stickiness to grip onto the metal pole.

Every pole dancer will experience a period of getting friction burns and bruises during practice sessions at some point in their journey. Some dancers even consider these injuries as pole trophies.

However, if you are not very keen on suffering from these painful, and sometimes unsightly, trophies, there are some things that you can do to help you heal faster. I will discuss these in a moment.

Is Pole Dancing Bad for Your Body?

Does Pole Dancing Give You Bruises?
Listen to experienced dancers when they say to tough it out. Your body will eventually get desensitized to the pain.

While pain and bruising are inevitable when you pole dance, these should not leave you with any lasting injury. You just have to understand why your body feels that pain and learn how to adjust. Know that when you first climb up the pole and sit, you are essentially letting the sensitive parts of your body support your weight.

Your skin, particularly on your shin or your inner thighs, is not used to this type of pressure. This unusual stress is why your body sends signals to your brain that you may be in danger.

The brain lets your body know about this through pain. When you stay in this position, your body will protect itself in the form of local inflammation or swelling, you would also notice bruising.

This occurs because the blood vessels underneath the point of contact break due to the trauma. At this point, you may be thinking of quitting because of the pain that you are experiencing.

If you continue to practice and apply pressure on the same areas over and over again, your body will understand that it is not actually in danger and start getting used to the feeling. It will no longer be too sensitive about the skin tension. However, if you use another body part for a new move, then be ready to go through it again.

When the pain starts to dissipate, some dancers worry that they have already killed their nerve endings and that is why they can no longer feel the pain. This is not true.

You don’t have to worry about losing feeling in the sensitive areas of your body. You will still feel other sensations. It is only the pulling and pinching in the area that your body has gotten used to.

In short, pole dancing is not bad for your body. If you practice and do the moves right, you should be able to experience a boost in your fitness. However, it is important to note that you must closely follow your teacher’s instructions because bruising and friction are not the only injuries that you can experience in pole dancing.

Does Your Skin Get Used to Pole Dancing?

Does Your Skin Get Used to Pole Dancing?

As mentioned, as you develop and gain pole dancing skills, your skin and body will eventually get used to the stress and pressure of pole dancing. You will learn how to position yourself and engage with the pole without banging your body against it. Once you improve on controlling your movements more effectively, the bruising will lessen.

Additionally, the skin on your sensitive areas will also thicken. It’s not exactly callous, so don’t worry about developing any unsightly regions in your body. Your muscles will also naturally toughen from the repeated trauma. They will eventually be able to carry your weight and allow you to perform the moves with less pain.

Now, for the question of how long the painful period will last, there is no fixed answer. A person’s sensitivity and pain tolerance play a large role in how quickly the pain will disappear. Some dancers claim that they only experienced bruising and pinching for two weeks. Others experienced bruising for months.

Additionally, day-to-day circumstances can also play a part if your skin will be able to tolerate the stress of pole dancing. Changes in hormones, the amount of sleep you were able to get the night before, and even your stress level for the day can cause you to feel less or more pain during your pole dancing session.

The important thing to remember is that the pain is temporary. Don’t let it discourage you from attending classes. Know that it will eventually go away. Plus, there are so many things that you can do now to lessen the pain.

How Do You Minimize the Pain Initially Experienced During Pole Dancing?


The most important thing to do is to listen well to your instructor. Do not attempt any move without completely understanding how to perform it properly. Observe your instructor closely as he or she demonstrates the steps and memorize them before attempting anything.

If you are attempting a new trick or a pose, try to do the steps as slowly as you can. Doing the steps in slow motion will allow your body to adapt to the strain and prevent your skin from being rubbed raw.

Build your strength steadily. As your body becomes stronger, you will learn to rely more on your muscle strength over your skin’s stickiness. This will do wonders in protecting your points of contact against friction and bruising.

How Do You Get Rid of Pole Dance Bruises?

As you wait for your body to adjust to new tricks and poses, there are some steps that you can follow to quickly heal bruises and other ailments:

Pole Dance Bruises + Ice Pack

The first one is to buy an ice pack because it will be your best friend for the next few weeks. According to an article from the Mayo Clinic, icing down the bruised area is the best way to help it heal.

  • Place the ice pack in a cloth or rag.
  • Apply the ice pack on the swollen and bruised part for about ten to twenty minutes.
  • Do this several times a day for the next few days.
  • You can do this up to four times per day.
  • Make sure that you don’t apply the ice directly onto your skin because it will cause more damage in the form of an ice burn!

Swelling + Elastic Band

If there is swelling, you can try to compress that part using a soft, elastic band. Make sure that you wrap it just right. Don’t wrap it too tightly. After your practice session, you can also elevate the swollen areas.

Swelling + Arnica

Applying an Arnica cream is also a step that dancers advise. It should help reduce the swelling and relieve the area from pain. If you can find a nice sports balm, you can apply that too.

Soreness + Epsom Salts

Epsom salts are known to work wonders for relieving soreness in the muscles and softening the skin. It is also often used for addressing swelling.

  • Add some Epsom salt in warm water for your next bath.
  • Soak in this for a while after a pole class.
  • You can also add calming herbs such as chamomile or lavender.

Your Diet

Your food can also do wonders in addressing swelling. You can opt to eat fruits and vegetables with anti-inflammatory properties. You can add fruits like pineapples to your diet for the first few weeks of pole dancing. Yum!

Following these steps will not prevent you from getting pole dance bruises. However, they will keep your skin looking lovely after it takes a beating during your pole dancing session.

These steps will tide you over for the weeks that it will take for your body to get used to the stress of gripping the metal pole.

What’s In Your Pole Class Bag? Check Out Some Of My Recommended Essentials:

Does Pole Dancing Give You Bruises

These are my must-haves!

Do you have any pole gear you cannot dance without? Let me know in the comments! And be sure to follow us on Pinterest & Instagram!