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article imageVideo: One-armed Aussie wins International Pole Championship

By JohnThomas Didymus     Mar 20, 2012 in Sports
A woman from Randwick in Sydney's eastern suburbs won first place in the disabled division at the International Pole Championship (IPC) held in Hong Kong.
The Telegraph reports 29 competitors competed in two categories, namely, Pole Fit and Pole Art.
Though she won the competition in the disabled division, The Telegraph reports that in 2009, she won a pole dancing competition against "able-bodied" dancers, after which she quit her job in IT, and became a personal trainer. Soon after, she got her first prosthetic and learned to ride a bike at 28. However, she still competes one-armed, without her prosthetic, and she hopes to represent Australia in the Paralympics.
According to Ninemsn, Roach wrote on her Facebook page after the event: "Last night I won my division in IPC. I came, I saw, I conquered!"
Huffington Post reports the judges focused in "Pole Art" on fitness and creativity of the contestant in executing pole routines.
According to Huffington Post, Roach said that as a teen, she danced in the underground Goth scene because she did not feel comfortable in "normal" society being a person with "handicap." According to Ninemsn, she said: "I got into the underground Goth scene in my teenage years because I didn't fit into normal society and I loved dancing the night away on the dance floor."
Roach said after she left the Goth scene, she began stage dancing in clubs, and according to The Telegraph, in 2006, she took up pole dancing and aerial acrobatics after she saw a circus-themed act.
Huffington Post reports Roach wrote in her competitor profile: "I have always loved dancing but as a child and teen with low self esteem I believed that aesthetic and athletic pursuits were not for me, not for my 'different' body... Luckily as an adult, I learned to challenge my assumptions."
Ninemsn reports the annual IPC competition has been running for six years and is organized by the International Pole Dance Fitness Association (IPDFA).
An Australian, Chris Measday, also won the men's division. He said: "I'm not the most flexible guy in the world, I'm not the strongest guy in the world, but I am graceful."
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