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Byron Shire
January 26, 2022

Byron tops poledance competition

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Hard work is paying off for Miss Lioness Christine Priestly. Photo Tarah Wadsworth
Hard work is paying off for Miss Lioness Christine Priestly. Photo Tarah Wadsworth

Poledancer Christine Priestly was ‘in shock’ when it was announced she had been crowned Miss Lioness after winning a Gold Coast competition last week.

‘I can’t express how I felt. I couldn’t believe it when they called my name,’ she said.

‘I came to poledancing with no skills, but if you put in the work it pays off.

The Byron Bay-based competitor out-performed a field of 22 other dancers from the four Pole Catz studios between Byron and Beenleigh in Brisbane.

Another local, Debbie Carlson, also competed in the advanced level of the competition under the name of Nifty Fifty and earned the Judges Choice award.

Christine has been learning poledancing for more than three years and is passionate about the fitness activity that is part dancing and part gymnastics.

‘I started poledancing classes a bit before my 36th birthday (I’m now 39), after having a cancerous breast lump removed and undergoing radiation therapy.

‘Enrolling in pole classes was one of the goals I set for myself.

‘Before I moved to Byron I made sure there was a studio up here,’ she said.

‘You can see your progress each week, building strength and fluidity.’

Christine had tried different types of dance styles but nothing really stuck.

‘Whenever I went to salsa there were not enough male partners,’ she said.


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