The Teacher: Your first S Factor Class
By Chelsea Goding
S Factor® is a feminine movement practice – a sensuous workout for body and soul that’s intelligently designed to open the female body into her full, free, erotic expression. We are the original home of the sexiest, most soulful and intuitive style of pole fitness. We incorporate dance, stretching, muscular work, and pole work with a deep unique meditation that enriches the mind-body connection.
Our mission is to empower all women. We elevate women’s lives by helping them awaken the natural, feminine movement of their bodies. We focus on immersing each woman in her sensual and emotional fluidity. When an S woman lives fully in her natural curves, she unleashes a magnetic power that is arresting. There are far too many women who have yet to awaken to their own bodies. Who are shut down, burnt out and depleted. It is for these and all women that S Factor exists.
Our studios are mirrorless, dimly-lit oases for the feminine. During classes, students are situated on mats in a circle around the perimeter of the room with the instructor at the center vocalizing the warm up while demonstrating it for the group. Classes are designed to be intimate to truly allow each individual experience to flourish. In-studio offerings range from stand-alone classes and workshops to series classes that build on each other, bringing students from Level 1 to 6 in just under one year of practice.
The woman behind this transformative movement, the pioneering voice behind an entire category called sensual fitness, is her own force of feminine nature, Sheila Kelley. From intimate gatherings in her home nearly 16 years ago, to studios, classes and retreats all over the world today, Sheila has inspired a revolution in fitness, femininity and personal growth.
Our world moves so quickly, we’re constantly juggling the demands and expectations placed on us, and often when we get caught up in that, we forget to breathe. Bringing your awareness to your breath brings awareness to your body and is a key to a more embodied and sensual life.
Breathe. Our world moves so quickly, we’re constantly juggling the demands and expectations placed on us, and often when we get caught up in that, we forget to breathe. Bringing your awareness to your breath brings awareness to your body and is a key to a more embodied and sensual life.
Slow Down. S Factor is a sensual movement practice, meaning we highlight your experience of your five senses. To tune in to the deliciously rich experience of your body, you’ll need to slow down. When you do, sensations as simple as the light caress of your hair resting on your shoulders can be fully appreciated.
Be Kind to Yourself. During class you’re going to hear lots of empowering language, and you’re going to be encouraged to look at yourself with a generous gaze. Allow yourself to believe that the beauty you see around you is a reflection of your own beauty. You read that right: You’re beautiful! At S Factor, beauty is defined as authenticity and we are here to elevate your most honest emotional and erotic expression!
Believe You Can Surprise Yourself. Some of the most moving feedback I receive as a teacher is when a woman shares that she never thought she was beautiful or powerful or erotic, but then in the glow of red lights, in the circle of other women, she experienced something new — something shifted and she felt an awakening of a side of herself that was unexpected. Women gain confidence from S Factor classes. It might be from the moment they step into the studio, it might be the in last minute of a two-hour class, but it’s a noticeable effect of every S woman you’ll meet.
Share It With Other Women. S Factor is an intergenerational community of women from all over the globe. There’s no right size, profile, fitness or flexibility level needed to take classes — all women are welcome. If you’re nervous about trying a class, invite a girlfriend to join you!
The Student: Your first S Factor Class
By Frances Hunt
“It’s okay for you to smack your own ass!” That was my welcome to S Factor Pole Class in Chelsea. When I was asked to participate and write about a pole class, I was glad to. I had taken a class several years ago and figured it would be a similar mess of me not being able to do much because my upper body is not as strong as I want to believe it is. I was so wrong!
As soon as I entered the studio, I had a feeling it was going to be a totally different experience. The waiting area had the standard branded fitness merchandise, but there was also a section filled with a mix of fishnet outfits, lace bras, feather boas and 6-inch platform heels. Clear 6-inch platform heels! Yep. This was going to be different.
I took a seat in the hallway waiting for the earlier class to finish. Once the door opened, I saw women walking out in thongs, feather boas, fishnets, and yes, platforms. I also saw a lot of latex. Oh my. I began to question whether I was dressed appropriately in my high-waisted black leggings and tank. Did I have on too much? What did I sign up for??
I entered a dimly lit mirrorless room, and our instructor Maggie walked in wearing a pair of latex leggings. Standing about 5’10” Maggie explained a little more about S Factor and its mission to empower and awaken the female sensuality. I expected to get right on the pole, but I was mistaken. We were seated in a circle around the room and Maggie sat in the center and began to demo. We began on the floor with a series of stretches and dance moves working the entire body. She explained how we should be comfortable exploring movement within our own bodies. I took a deep breath and decided to get out of my head and just roll with it. I was ok until I was directed to travel my hands over my body. That made me uncomfortable. I felt I was intentionally trying to be sexy and it felt unnatural, like I was trying too hard. Now don't get me wrong; I was enjoying the class, I just really wanted to understand my discomfort. What exactly was my issue with sexy and seduction? Did I not own mine as much as I thought?
Maggie then taught us how to walk in a sexy “S Walk." I really can't explain it because I absolutely looked like an uncoordinated mess. It’s a seductive, one foot in front of the other walk, that I am convinced I made most unsexy! Then came…THE POLE! The actual pole portion of the class was short. We were taught four moves, and it was a fun introduction to the pole. Maggie informed us we would perform a short sequence set to music based on the movements we did at the start of class. We were instructed to walk seductively toward the wall envisioning someone. Take a deep breath and just feel. Feel the music. Feel the energy. After an hour, I was finally letting go. I finally got it. For me, this sequence was about allowing my mind and body to feel the music while allowing my soul and sensuality to just be.
The last 15 minutes of class we watched Maggie do a routine. Before she began, one of the women began to speak. She had recently moved to NY from Russia. She said she had never really felt sexy and after taking her first two classes, she felt much more empowered in her sexuality and sexiness. S Factor is not just a pole dancing studio, it’s a safe space for women to find explore and own the depths of their feminine GODDESS energy and sensuality. Sometimes that begins with smacking your own ass!
Have no expectations. Leave any thoughts of what a pole class is at the door. Be open to receive whatever the class opens for you. Enjoy this physical spiritual and emotional journey in the safety of this supportive and judgment-free space.
Focus on your breath. Allow your breath to guide your body and mind. There is absolutely no wrong way to do anything in this class.
Leave your inhibitions at the door. Be open. Allow your feminine energy to guide you throughout the class in order to fully experience the power of seduction and sensuality.
Allow your Goddess energy to shine through.