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Interview: Cathy Hummels, the Barre entrepreneur

 

Dear Cathy, what is your opinion on body positivity? Is this a topic that you discuss on your Instagram account or in public?

Cathy: I am convinced, it's an enormously important topic, as nowadays people tend to strive too much for that "one ideal" - to be "slim and thin". But, isn’t it much more essential, in terms of body positivity, that your body is healthy and you feel good in it? Each human figure is beautiful in its own way, that's my attitude towards it.

You mainly practice barre. What pleases you so much about it?

Cathy: I love it because it's a good combination of Yoga and Pilates, integrating also certain elements from ballet. It's a wonderful, complete body workout, at the same time balancing out mind and body, giving you the feeling being in total harmony.

Is special equipment needed to do Barre at home?

Cathy: You can train at home with a ballet barre, a Pilates ball, a loop or a mat. You can set up everything quite professionally, but it's not a must. We also offer a number of workouts that don't require any equipment at all, so there is always a Plan B. Instead of a bar, you can use a chair at home, for example. Alternative for a Pilates ball, a cushion works as well.

My app barrelove.de offers a variety of barre workouts. Each user may test it for 7 days free of charge to get an impression and we are offering a detailed portfolio of balance exercises that define workouts and sweat sessions. Additionally, we have regular live classes with great guest teachers. And Fitness influencers are giving training sessions with us, too. It's really fun and, on top of that, a most healthy workout for body + mind.

How did "Barre Love" come about? And is it possible to use the app without any previous experience?

Cathy: When the first Corona Lock Down began, we were at a loss not being able to offer a proper barre training anymore. So, we had the idea of producing short barre videos. In this way, we ended up developing into our own app.

And, of course, you may use the app without prior experience. The most important thing is to follow the instructions carefully. There are three different levels, I would recommend starting with level 1 and then slowly increasing. The good thing about this form of training is that you can act independently, for example, by lifting weights getting more heavier and pushing yourself that way. It's really a very cool workout.


What are the advantages of Barre Love compared to other fitness apps?

Cathy: This app is suitable for women who wish to do something good for themselves and get physically fit at the same time. You can easily achieve effects quickly with Barre Love, if you like to sway to music by defining your body in that way. Barre Love is aimed at women who enjoy practicing yoga and Pilates combined with fitness. I'm so glad, I found this workout. I love it and I almost only do Barre.

Do you give live lessons, too?

Cathy: Yes, and I love teaching. As I am not a qualified barre trainer, I always work together with my business partner, Tanja. She is a professional Barre, Yoga, Fitness and Pilates trainer. This combination is vital for us. We want to encourage people to follow their own athletic journey and discover the effects it has on their bodies themselves. Tanja is an expert in this field and when we function as a double pack, we are invincible! Even though, we are two different personalities, we complement each other very well.

Cathy Hummels in Mandala

You are a mother, an entrepreneur and a person of public life. How do you manage to take time for barre with all the work you have to do? What motivates you to keep at it?

Cathy: Barre is not just a hobby, it is my passion, in balancing out my stressful everyday life and all my roles. I motivate myself and always just feel wonderful afterwards. Then, I am balanced, in harmony, knowing I've done something good for myself, but I'm not completely exhausted, I'm full of energy. I am simply happy afterwards.

You often wear MANDALA labels during your workouts. Would you tell us how you became aware of our brand?

Cathy: I wrote my book "Strong with Yoga" a few years ago and became aware of Mandala through my yoga mentor, Flora Fink (co-author of the book), at that time. We even wore Mandala yoga outfits for the photos of the book. That was four years ago, but I'm still a fan of your brand, especially your leggings, they are the most comfortable leggings I've ever worn! And they're stylish too. Besides comfort, the fashion component also plays an important role for me when choosing my yoga clothes. It just feels great to practice sport or barre when wearing a lovely outfit and feeling in harmony, both on the inside and the outside. That puts me in a good mood.