Interview with Karina I. Fantoft
Karina caught our attention at the Norwegian championship not only through her own performances but also for having the strongest little daughter we have ever seen, climbing the pole every chance she got during the breaks (the pole world better get ready for this one!). We got the chance to ask her some questions about pole dancing to get to know her a bit better and we are happy to share this very first interview in the blog with you!
Karina I. Fantoft @karinamomentum
Dance school teacher and full time mum – converted office worker
For how long have you been pole dancing and what is your relationship to pole dancing?
I have been pole dancing for 8 years. I am a pole dance student and attend competitions.
Tell us how you first heard about pole dancing and decided to give it a try.
I wanted to start pole dancing and signed up at a local fitness studio that offered pole dancing in the Netherlands where I was situated at the time. I didn’t know what to wear so I was too shy to sign up for classes. My best friend arranged pole dancing for my bachelorette party and it was just as fun as I thought it would be. I finally got the courage to sign up.
How many times have you competed in pole dancing and how do you handle the nerves?
I have competed three times. I have also performed at studio shows. I have a lot of nerves so I am not really handling it. I just jump. Like from a diving board.
In the Norwegian championship this year we saw you having a Hawaiian/jungle theme which was really fun to see! How did you come up with the idea and did you choreograph the performance yourself?
My coreo was inspired by Vaiana. I like the story because it is about pursuing what you are destined to do. I have also lived a few years in Australia, where I also got to meet a lot of people with a Maori background and I find the culture fascinating. I made the choreo with good help from my mentor Jorge Lera in Team Nye Tendenser.
Do you have any more competitions coming up this year or next year that you already know you will participate in?
I have applied for one and planning for another one, so I hope I get the opportunity to perform.
“When I nail something new it gives me a real kick!”
Have you ever told someone about your sport and not received a good response? Tell us about that conversation!
Not really. Most people are impressed and the first thing they say is that I must be really strong. My mom was sceptical until I bought a ticket for her for my first competition which was the Norwegian Championship 2017. She was the happiest woman in the whole building when I won my category.
Aside from pole dancing, what other sports have you done and are you still active in any of them?
I love to run. I do it every week while I collect garbage – also known as plogging. I have the third belt in Capoeira, but unfortunately haven’t had time to practice it the last year. As a child I did ballet and gymnastics.
When you have a busy life (like when you are a mother for example) exercise can often be something that gets out of priority. How do you find the time and motivation to train?
My three children take up a lot of time and energy. Since my husband travels and works a lot I get a lot of responsibility with them. He knows the importance of letting me recharge so when he is home he gives me time for pole. When he is away I go to daytime classes and get a babysitter sometimes. We also have a pole in the basement and one in the garden. I let the kids have turns with me.
And to the last question – which is your favourite pole trick?
I don’t have one specific favourite. I love pole flows and combos. It is not important for me to nail tricks, but to feel like I have a pretty flow with clean transitions. But I must admit that when I nail something new it gives me a real kick! The best rush I have is when I got the handspring a few years back.