Get strong from the inside out

Meet Cathy

Cathy Madeo is an E-RYT 500 Hour Yoga teacher. Her teaching career began in 2004 in Los Angeles. A suffer of chronic back pain due to spinal stenosis, a genetic condition which narrows the spinal canal, she also herniated all the disks in her low spine when she underwent back labor 10 years ago. Cathy spent many years in so much pain she could barely walk and had to stop teaching and practicing yoga for some time. It was after the birth of her second child, 4 years ago that she decided to make some big changes. While she had lost a lot of strength and flexibility, Cathy wanted to return to teaching yoga. What happened next changed her life, and she believes she can help you change yours too.


The Work

Upon returning to teaching yoga, Cathy got hired to teach an advanced arm balance and inversion workshop at a local yoga studio. While she could barely touch her toes, much less do handstand or crow pose, she was determined to get back to teaching. She had 3 months to prepare for this workshop. She charted out all the poses she knew she'd want to teach. She rolled out her mat every day, while her then 5-month old took naps. Frustrated at first that she couldn't get into poses that once came easy for her, she had moments of hope when seeing changes in her body in the process of trying repeatedly to get into the postures in baby steps toward the poses. She began to work in repetitions, repeating steps along the way toward the pose, over and over again in sets. What happened over the next 3 months was nothing short of full body transformation. 


The Science

During this time Cathy began to research everything about the core and its function. She knew if she were going to go back to teaching and practicing, she'd need a sustainable body. What she discovered shattered her conceptions about how to use the core and how to strengthen it. She discovered that there were so many more muscles that made up the core and they all need to be strengthened in order to keep the spine healthy. She also got affirmation of why the core exercises she was doing in the way she was doing them were rapidly changing her body. When we employ external muscles of the core like the deltoid and glutes, for instance, the muscles work harder than when we isolate core muscles during exercises. 


The Approach

By educating herself on how the core muscles work, she learned that she could turn them on to engage more deeply, as opposed to just doing exercises and not thinking about the muscles that work. This deep mind body connection is at the heart of the success of Active Your Core. She also discovered that by doing core work in different positions, not just on her back, her muscles were challenged in new ways. This was the birth of Activate Your Core. Cathy knew she couldn't keep what she discovered to herself. She began to develop a workshop to share everything she had learned, all the exercises she had self-taught and tested. Activate Your Core started as a sold out workshop, then as a 6 week series, and then an ongoing class at her yoga studio in Princeton, NJ and now in the online space with YOU! She's watched countless students transform with Activate Your Core and you can too! She continues to evolve Activate Your Core, as she and her students get stronger so that no one plateaus. You'll learn to get strong from the inside out and this newfound strength will transform the way you move and look. 


Practice with Cathy

You can catch her weekly core class or quarterly Activate Your Core workshops at Honor Yoga Princeton in Princeton, New Jersey. Not local? Book Cathy to lead Activate Your Core at your local studio or private sessions and get your Activate Your Core series here. Want to learn even more about Cathy? Visit for her full teaching schedule and events.