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#FitnessFlow: Black Girls Pole Edition [Video]

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To kick off Vixen's first ever PDA Week (Pole Dancing Awareness Week), we're shining our spotlight on #BlackGirlsPole—the mind-blowing movement aiming to push the art of pole dancing to the next level for black women.

#BDP's inaugural event, hosted by Body & Pole dance studio in NYC on June 21st, featured performances from some of the toughest pole princesses in the business, including current National Aerial Pole Dancing (NAPA) Champion Crystal Belcher and superstar Nicole “The Pole” Williams, who appeared in Rihanna's "Pour it Up" video.

Stiletto-stomping out the shameful, exploitative stereotypes associated with the stunning art form, the event was a riotous celebration of black women’s sensuality and awesome athleticism. Women cheered each other on with encouragement and support as the dancers worked the pole, showing off their impressively tricks and tangles.

#BDP's fierce founder, Dahlijah Franklin, hopes the movement will empower black women to discover their own sexiness:

“Pole dancing will take every women down a different path. It is a journey of discovery, both mental and physical. Black Girls Pole empowers the hidden strength that is dwelling inside, dying to be unleashed. You walk different, you feel different, and your body changes before your eyes. The confidence gained from this mind-blowing thing we call Black Girls Pole will help shape and change you into the courageous, sexy, strong black women you were called to be. We dare you to challenge yourself, and go on this journey.”

Peep her interview below and then click through for pics of the pretty pole play.

Photo Credit: Jasmine Gonzalez

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We rounded up some of our favorite pieces of advice from our first few episodes! Our bosses so far have ranged from rappers (Saweetie and Kash Doll), to authors (Karyn Parsons) to activists (Peppermint). Each of the bosses invited on the show have had some incredible journeys, and we thank them for giving us insight into how they've become the bosses they are today.

Whether they're thanking their mothers for inspiring them to be their best (like Amara La Negra), or chalking up some boss moves to being their authentic selves (Bevy Smith), this retrospective episode focuses on the awesome words these bosses have shared with us thus far.

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Andrea Kelly Says She's Been Attacked For Calling Out R. Kelly's Behavior

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The former couple was previously in a child support battle for their children Joann, 21, Jay, 19, and Robert, 17. During the time of filming, Kelly owed $161,000 in back child support to his ex. In May, it was reportedly paid off by a mysterious donor.

"When I think about the ways that I have been abused by Robert, from being hogtied, having both of my shoulders dislocated, to being slapped, pushed, having things thrown as me, the sexual abuse, the mental abuse, words can't even describe," she said.

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Growing Up Hip Hop: Atlanta airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on WEtv.

Watch the clip here.

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A post shared by Ebony Brown (@wildcatebonybrown) on Jun 3, 2019 at 1:31pm PDT

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When it comes to moving in the black hair space, Sillah feels empowered at Mama Tress. It also makes it easy to develop black hair tools like the styler. "I feel like my voice is listened to because I am a consumer of all these things. It's empowering to be in a position to have more control," she said. "If we're being honest, a lot of the black hair spaces are not owned by people who look like us. To be in a position where I can say "No, don't create this product, we don't wear things like this,' or 'Actually you should name it this because this resonates with this community,' I'm an advocate for my community. That's part of the reason why Baby Tress was created because it's about a larger conversation, about things not being thoughtfully made for us."

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