Bildauswahl 2020

LOWA ACTIVE Team Erwin Schottler

Nature as a classroom

It is virtually impossible to describe Erwin Schottler. He has simply been in so many places and done so many jobs in his life. After completing his craftsman’s appren­ticeship, Erwin joined the police force and ulti­mately became a bodyguard assigned to its Special Oper­a­tional Unit. He even­tually left the force and began to run a hotel along with his wife. This line of work gave him an oppor­tunity to get to know the coaches and trainers whose work had fascinated him so much. But his ideas about coaching were different and new: He wanted to actively reanimate the values and approaches that lots of office workers tend to forget during the stress-filled grind that makes up their daily lives – and the word “active” should definitely be taken literally here. Erwin’s “Gehs­präche” (ambling conver­sations), “Walk­shops®” and many other incentive oppor­tunities are held outdoors, usually in the woods. The credo of his coached strolls is just as simple as it is ingenious: Shorn of all technical devices like smart­phones and laptops, the walkers focus on other aspects of life and auto­mat­ically deal with one another more respectfully. The creativity that frequently gets shoved aside during various stressful situ­ations then reemerges from the shadows. LOWA has been Erwin’s footwear of choice for many years now and adds a dash of colour to nature – thanks to the bright red colour of the coach’s shoes.

Facts & figures

Home base:
Favourite climbing site:
Local mountain:
1,83 m
79 kg

Erwin Schottler,
What makes hiking special to you?

“When I take in the world with all of my senses, I imme­diately forget about the thoughts that dominate my day. The array of colour, partic­ularly the hues of green, instantly have an inviting and soothing effect on me. No matter which season of the year you are talking about – nature enables me to open my mind in all sorts of ways. Many memories, some of which extend all the way back to my earliest childhood, come to life. Ideas for the future pop up, too. The German expression “Composure is the well­spring of inner strength” is something more than a cliche to me.”

Many people know you as the “hiking pope”. Where did this nickname come from?

“I set up the first hiking school in the Palatinate region of south­western Germany in 1986, when I was operating a hotel (Kastan­ienhof) at Donnersberg in the Palatinate with my wife. The story took on a life of its own in the media after an article about it appeared in the newspaper Sonntag Aktuell and in the news­magazine Stern. I was then christened the “hiking pope” in the process.”

How did your rela­tionship with LOWA begin?

“I have had a good rela­tionship with LEKI for years thanks to my activities at DSV, primarily as a Nordic walking trainer and instructor as well as an instructor of snowshoe trainers and cross-country ski trainers. Naturally, you need good footwear if you want to put your passion for walking through nature into action. This is how I got to know LOWA. I am really thankful for that. The personal inter­action that I have with my contact partners at the company is very pleasant and valuable.”

Do you always take along some everyday objects when you head outdoors?

“The best footwear that LOWA has to offer, a pock­etknife, tissues, a small pen, a notepad, a good mood, a positive attitude and a camera.”

What would the perfect day look like for you?

“Starting the day with positive and demanding thoughts and plans and remaining focused on the task at hand while enjoying moments of relaxation (by doing such things as spending a few minutes outside in nature’s greenery). I always keep my eye trained on the goal, structure further steps and aim high every time.”

My shoes for…