THERE'S no doubting that pole-dancing is a sport on the rise in the Wimmera.
From what started as a handful of students has spread into a craze that not even La Boudoir Flirty Fitness owner Marie-Claude Gagne could imagine.
"I've always wanted to open up a studio of my own," Gagne said.
"We've now got about 40 women and eight classes there's such a demand for it."
Gagne, who teaches the classes from the front room of her Horsham home, said pole-dancing was a great way of improving general fitness, strength, muscle-tone and self-confidence, along with meeting new people.
"Pole-dancing has helped me lose 25 kilograms since having a baby," she said.
"It's different to going to the gym and the women actually look forward to training."
Instructor Mikahl Peters, who has been pole-dancing for three years, recently competed in her first tournament in Ballarat.
"I competed in a doubles competition at the regionals in Ballarat and came third," she said.
Peters expects a number of other students to follow her lead and enter pole-dancing competitions.
Along with eight-week terms which run during the week, La Boudoir also does casual classes and hens nights.
Gagne said anyone wanting to be involved with pole-dancing could call her on 0411 309 982.