[Martha Azzi | Daily Telegraph]

“I think a lot of people felt that it was not possible for them to try pole dancing, so creating a class where it was just curvy women gave them the confidence to actually step into the classroom.”

Zoe Heath, 27, weighed 150kg when she started pole dancing in mainstream classes at World of Pole in Arndell Park, but it was not until she joined a Pole 4 Curves class aimed at overweight women did she feel comfortable.

“At times (in mainstream classes) there would be moves the girls would be doing and I would get very upset because I wouldn’t be able to move as quickly as they would and it made me feel self-conscious,” Ms Heath said.

“Every now and then I’d watch the girls progress with their moves while I would still be on the ground doing floor work.”

It was also a mental battle against negative thoughts.

“You are shy in a mainstream class,” she said. “You’re struggling while everyone else manages the move and you think, ‘How am I going to do this, is the pole going to support me?’.

“It took about a year for me to pull myself off the ground.”

Zoe Heath (pictured front) takes part in the class taught by Dee Heath.

The Pole 4 Curves class encourages women to overlook embarrassment.

“It’s a class where you’re not going to get judged and you’re going to feel comfortable because there are women that are the same size and are at the same level,” Ms Heath said.

“They understand where you’re coming from more than anybody else in the other classes.”

World of Pole owner and head instructor Dee Heath (no relation to Zoe) introduced the classes for voluptuous women about 12 months ago, unaware they would be a hit.

The classes began with the expectation that the women would then join the mainstream classes, but the women did not want to leave, prompting Dee Heath to introduce more Pole 4 Curve classes for different levels.