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A woman has told how her life was saved – by pole dancing.

Kerry Derham, from Worthing, used to feel worthless. She was overweight, in crippling debt and suffering from depression after a volatile relationship. Her self-esteem was at rock-bottom.

‘I went through some really awful things, and everything was taken from me, even down to my home,’ she recalls. The 31-year-old couldn’t even bear to look at herself in the mirror. ‘I’d lost myself along the way,’ she courageously admits.

But after taking up pole dancing as a hobby, Kerry discovered a sense of empowerment that helped her turn her life around – losing five stone in the process. ‘Pole fitness was my release from everything else that was going on in my life. I don’t think I’d be where I am if it weren’t for fitness.’

Now Kerry, 31, owns her own pole-dancing and fitness business and hopes that she can help other women dance their worries away. ‘I always want to be a positive influence on other people, and a good role model. I want to inspire other people that no matter how bad life can get, that there is light at the bottom of that.’

Now Kerry has her sights set on the bodybuilding scene, and she won’t let anything get in her way – including the guys in the gym! ‘They do find it intimidating, especially when I’m lifting more than them,’ she laughs. Go girl!