Kendra Wilkinson Kendra Wilkinson

Kendra Wilkinson may be the second of Hef's former girls next door to compete on Dancing with the Stars, but don't think she turned to Season 8 alum Holly Madison for pointers. "I'm very stubborn like that," Wilkinson tells "If anyone tries to tell anything to me, I shut them up immediately. There's only one piece of advice I'll take and that's from [partner] Louis [van Amstel]." So how are rehearsals going for the self-proclaimed tomboy with zero dance experience?

Dancing Season 12 pairs revealed! Who's your pick to win?

Why'd you decide to do the show?
Kendra Wilkinson:

When I heard that they wanted to talk with me, I was like, "Uh, oh." I was kind of nervous. Yeah, I have a show on TV. I've been on TV for eight seasons. But candid reality TV is a lot different than Dancing with the Stars. I'm not that Hollywood. And Dancing is beyond Hollywood. It's a huge show. It took me a while to really feel it in my heart to feel good about it. Having a son, am I really going to take this time? It's not even the time; it's the focus. ... It's a lot of mental work.

Has it been tough juggling the show and your family life?
I was preparing for the worst and it's actually not that bad. You get to make your schedule. I get to spend some time with the baby, go dance for a few hours, and come back and spend more time with the baby and my hubby [Hank Baskett]. It's a perfect, perfect time in my life and career to be doing this.

We did a poll and you're the favorite to win.
And I really don't like that at all! [Laughs] I've always been the underdog and I love that feeling. I've never won anything except for my husband and my son. I hate the fact that I'm picked to win. ... It's flattering, I guess, but I wish people wouldn't do that. It puts extra pressure on me. I don't know why people are picking me. I do not have one minute of choreographed dance experience in my life. I know how to go into the club and shake my butt to a hip-hop song, but when it comes to choreography, posture and etiquette, that is really hard for me. I need a lot of practice. ... I'm going to make a lot of mistakes. It's going to be a huge fight for me.

What's been the hardest thing so far?
Definitely posture. My posture is really bad. I have no etiquette. I'm an athlete. I'm a tomboy. I slouch and I'm pigeon-toed. That's my main problem. It's all mental. Louis lays us on the floor and is like, "Look, your feet go out because that's natural for your body." I'm like, "You know what? You're right!"

Meet the new Dancing cast

What's your first dance?
The cha-cha. I get to shake my booty for a little bit. Our routine is great. I hope I can pull it off on game day. It's very, very fast. I have to concentrate. Once you think it's over, you have a mile to go. I think it's a great way to start off the season for me. It's a great way to pump up everybody and get everybody involved and have some fun. If they gave me the foxtrot for my first dance, that wouldn't have been good.

How are you and Louis getting along?
Louis is awesome. I couldn't have asked for a better partner. It was, like, four practices in where I had a nervous breakdown. ... There was one step I wasn't getting. Louis and I were kind of bickering, and I broke down. I can't remember the last time I cried like that. My bottom lip was quivering. I told him, "This isn't some movie scene where I'm going to get up and do the dance perfectly. I'm going to get up and try not to f--- it up." You know, I'm hormonal. I'm a girl. I'm going to have my days when I'm going to cry. Some days I'll be all goofy. Some days, I'll be "Wah!"

What do you think of the rest of the cast?
I think this is one of the first seasons in a while where the door is very open for everybody. There's not a person in the mix with dance experience or a training background similar to dancing. When they asked me to do the show, I said, "There's not going to be a Nicole [Scherzinger] or a Kristi [Yamaguchi] or a gymnast, is there?" Because if I come in and see that, I know where I am in the totem pole and I know that I'm most likely going to lose. This season, it's open.

What are you looking forward to the most?
I'm looking forward to getting the first dance over with. It's one of those things where the more I wait, the more nervous I get.... I'm also excited about getting into my costume. That's going to give it that extra spark for the dance.