The answer is hard to measure because many different things are involved. It is thought that their annual incomes, excluding tips, are in the region of $1,000 or more, and some estimates say their earnings are probably more. For instance, in the 1970s, dancers from the International Pole Dancing Federation (IFDH), who are considered professionals in the United States and Canada, earned between $100,000 and $200,000. In 2000, the IFDH had a total membership list of 5,380. It was found that they were paid between $8,000 and $12,000 per year. Their average wage has not significantly changed, yet it hasn’t declined.
Why did pole dancers develop such a high degree of professionalism? According to experts, it may have something to do with a lack of work in the early days. Pole dancers were often forced to make their routines on the streets, because local clubs and dance groups were always down or out of business. And because of the lack of work on the poles themselves, the dancers were free to try out new styles, moves and styles.
Pole dancing wasn’t a big part of America’s culture and fashion in the early 1900s. Pole dancing, as many remember it, was mainly seen at county fairs (there were at least eight during World War I), where dancers competed in a variety of different sports. Some of the dances we remember from that era, including the “spaz” and “thrashing”, were probably invented by girls who were taking part in a local county fair.
The first major show in Chicago was the “Polish Carnival’ held in May 1895.” Pole dancers were expected to perform, the same way they did at the horse races of that era!
In 1895, there were 742 competitors for the first Chicago Pole Dance Competition, including 442 girls and 556 boys. There were 434 people representing 40 different countries, and there were 16 contestants per country (except for France which had eight). There were 1,715 entrants for the competition, and a grand total of 2,971 competitors. Pole dancing was a very important event for Poles. They had to compete, so that the nation, through various means, was connected and represented. The dancers’ choreography and language development was a huge part of their performance.
Many of the songs used in the Polish competitions had an element of music, so Poles were learning English songs as well. Pole dancing in Chicago was similar to
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