About Studio Ad Astra

About Studio Ad Astra

Hi, I am Hanka from Nijmegen. In my daily life, I am assistant professor in structure bioinformatics at the Radboudumc in Nijmegen. In my free time, I teach and perform as artistic poledancer and aerialist. Studio Ad Astra is my own small company that enables me to do this professionally.

It’s a passion to perform and bring my stories to a stage using my acrobatic skills. And I have had the honour to perform at many beautiful events and shows so far. I also had the chance to compete in many different high level world competitions such as European and World Championships, Worlcups, ICP, PoleArt and PoleTheatre Competitions.

As teacher I like to find your personal ambitions and possibilities. Contact me if you are ready to create stories together!

What is
Studio Ad Astra?

As mentioned above, this is my own small company. Using this site you can book your workshops/private classes and shows. Did you not find what you were looking for? Send me a message and we will see what is possible!

Why Studio Ad Astra?

The name “Ad Astra” is a Latin phrase which means “To the Stars”. This stands for aiming for the best. At Studio Ad Astra, we challenge ourselves by aiming for the best within each personal possibilities. For one person, this goal could be their first spin on a pole, for the other a goal might be to compete in a world class competition. Everyone is a star, everything is possible, and Studio Ad Astra wants to contribute to making this happen. Don’t let anything stop you, the sky is the limit!

More about Studio Ad Astra

Accordion Content

An Aerial Art act is the ideal addition for an event or a show. During the years I often had the honour to share a stage with celebrities and upcoming talents. Sportgala’s, carnaval, choir performances, book presentations, videoclips, showcases, Operafestivals and museum days, everything is possible.

I also visited many other countries to perform, such as Poland, Mexico, South-Africa. The best part, however, is always to collaborate with other artist to create an amazing show.

I have been teaching since 2006 when I started out following the NPF (Dutch Federation) instructor course. Over the years, I have improved my teaching skills by following a diverse set of courses and certifications, such as: the OC Polefitness international polefitness certification

the Xpert teacher training by Xpole. However, most experience is gather in the field and those hundreds of workshops all over the world have always thaught me something new. I also enjoy following classes from other teachers since you are never too old to learn.

As the teacher for Student Pole Association Lasya, I also had the chance to develop myself as trainer of new trainers. In the meantime, I have guided many enthousiasts on their road to become a trainer or competition coach.

I have studied Molecular Life Sciences ar Radboud University Nijmegen, followed by a PhD in Structure Bioinformatics. In my daily life now, I am assistant professor in bioinformatics and I use my computer to look at proteins in 3D in order to understand the molecular mechanisms of disease. My research contributes to the development of new medicines and therapies.

Accordion Content

Following a long gymnastics career, I never expected to join another competition. I was very wrong about that…. I have joined almost any type of poledance competition you can think of and collected a few titles along the way, including those of European and World Champion. I have also done a few aerial hoop competitions. Below, you can find a complete list:

(2008) Dutch National Championships Artistic Poledance, Amsterdam (1st place)

(2008) Dutch National Championships PoleFitness, Amstelveen (2nd place)

(2009) Benelux Championships, Antwerpen (1st place)

(2009) Poledance international online competition (2nd place)

(2010) Benelux Championships, Antwerpen (1st place)

(2010) PoleArt, Stockholm (finalist)

(2010) World Championships, Zürich (semi finalist)

(2010) European Championships, Essex (UK) (1st place)

(2011) Aerial Pole International “Best Music Interpretation” and 2nd place

(2011) Benelux Championships, Antwerpen (1st place)

(2011) Miss Pole Universe, Denver, USA (2nd place)

(2011) World Championships, BudaPest (3rd place + “Best PoleTricks”)

(2011) European Championships, Vught (1st place)

(2012) Finalist Aerial Pole International, Bern

(2012) Finalist World Pole SportsChampionships, Londen (6de)

(2012) European Championships, Vught (1st place)

(2012) World Championships, Zurich (5de)

(2013) Bad Kitty Spins&Tricks Battle during poleconvention (winner spins)

(2013) PoleArt & IPC (semi-finalist)

(2013) UKPPC 2013 (Finalist)

(2014) WorldCup, Rio de Janeiro (2nd place)

(2014) PoleArt Cyprus (Finalist)

(2015) IPSF Dutch Championships (1st place)

(2015) Pole Theatre UK (2nd place )

(2015) IPSF World Championships (Finalist)

(2015) Pole Classic Las Vegas, (2nd place)

(2015) Dutch and International Poleart (2nd and 1ste place)

(2016) Finalist Pole Art Spain

(2017) PoleTheatre UK – Comedy category (1st place)

(2017) IPSF World Championships Artistic Pole, Den Bosch – 3e plaats

(2017) Aerial Movement Competition – Category Aerial Hoop (1st place)

(2017) Pole Art France, Paris (3rd place)

(2017) Pole Art Croatia, Pula (1st place)

(2017) Pole Theatre Worlds, Mallorca (2nd place comedy category)

(2017) Pole Art Spain (1st place)

(2018) International Pole Championships Brisbane, (Pole Fit title)

(2018) Pole Art France, Paris (finalist)

(2019) Aerial Art Hoop competition, Vlissingen (1st place)

(2019) PSO The Netherlands, Amsterdam (1st place)

(2021) IPSF Dutch Championships – duo artistic (1st place)

(2021) PSO Aquarius – edited video category (2nd place)

(2021) PSO Aries – edited video category (1st place)

(2021) IPSF World Championships – artistic doubles (2nd place)

(2021) Aerial Art competition, Vlissingen (1st place)

(2022) Pole Theatre UK, (1st place Art, 1st place overall)

(2023) IPSF Dutch Championships- duo artistic (1st place)

(2023) PSO Zurich – doubles level 5 (1st place)

(2023) IPSF World Championships – artistic doubles (1st place)

My very first passion was gymnastics. When I did not have to be at school, you could find me in the gymnastics hall. I never made it to the Olympics (I would have loved to 😉 ) but did join the Dutch Nationals multiple times, and even won in 2002. (albeit on LOS1 level, for those who know… ) During my time as a student in Nijmegen I continued my gymnastics career having even more fun. I also won the Dutch Nationals for Students several times.

This background in gymnastics turned out to be very useful when I retired from gymnastics in 2006 and was looking for a new challenge. I found freedom and creativity in poledance and acrobatics. And what started out as a single try-out class, became a new hobby very soon. As teacher, but also as an artist, I received invitations to teach and perform. Besides that, I decided to try another competition and before I even knew it I competed at a world level (something I had been dreaming of for a long time). Poledance and acrobatics has brought me to all continents of the world. I have collected so many fun experiences and had the chance to meet many other pole and aerial addicts.

I am always aiming to bring a nice story to the stage. Of course, it is possible to do that with a single performance, but it is even better to create larger shows that are being recorded. In 2015 I started the idea to create a big show with all kinds of group-acts from different studios here in the Netherlands. That is how Pole Evolution was born. In the meantime, we had 3 editions of this show in a sold-out theater. An evening filled with amazing stories and spectacular group acts. My passion to collaborate with others in order to create something beautiful has led to diverse group-acts and productions with NSPV LAsya, LOF DanceCrew and Womanhood. For larger shows I can always ask for help from my friends!

I have also done several video-projects, creating both the content and final edits. You can see these examples on the media page.

Thank you and partners

As a small business I am extremely gratefull for my network of talented friends. For diverse collabs I like to work with: