For local residents looking for a new form of exercise, a boutique fitness studio franchise opened last week in the Ashbrook Marketplace Shopping center across from Lidl.
Row House, owned by Ellen and Barry Carpe of Ashburn, focuses on a popular workout using rowing machines.
Based in Irvine, California, Row House began in New York City in 2014 and is a fast-growing fitness concept that expects to have 80 locations across the country by the end of the year.
Ellen Carpe, who works in the digital software/IT business and was a former store manager at Nordstrom in Tysons Corner, said she introduced the idea of owning a business to her husband about two and a half years ago. They wanted to do something where they could be more immersed in the community, she said.
“Rowing is not often found in this area. We were very impressed with this business model, the beliefs and vision for how to increase the level of interest in rowing and continued wellness,” Ellen Carpe said.
Current safety and cleaning precautions include keeping members more than 10 feet apart during workouts, cleaning every station after each class and using a hospital-grade electrostatic fogger around the studio.
“It’s scary enough to open a business, but to open one now during a pandemic is even more scary,” Ellen Carpe said.
Classes are designed to be efficient and low-impact while engaging more than 80 percent of the body’s muscles, the owners say. People of all fitness levels and ages can participate in the choreographed rowing classes, which are set to music.
The Carpes have hired seven coaches to lead the 45-minute classes. Classes start as early as 5 a.m. and are offered seven days a week.
The Carpes’ son, Kyle, and daughter, Maddy, are also involved with the business, working behind the scenes on social media and helping keep the studio clean.
Row House has already become involved with the local schools as the primary sponsor of Riverside High School’s crew team.
“We love being able to see people and build relationships. It’s nice to see. We want to use this as a platform to help others,” Carpe said.
More information can be found at TheRowHouse.com/location/Ashburn.