About this project

Location: Washington, DC

Owner: Anne Mahlum

Date project completed: Fall 2013

Total square footage: 2,000 sq. ft.

Photographer: //3877

Contractor: HBW Group

MEP Engineering: Blue Moon Engineering

Project Description:
The stigma that only the beautiful, physically fit people of the world are welcome within the confines of gym and fitness centers not only exists, but continues to be exacerbated by newer fitness crazes like crossfit and cycle studios. The goals of [solidcore] fitness studio are simple; welcome everyone and strengthen from the core out.

Founded by Anne Mahlum, [solidcore] is the only studio in D.C. that features the Lagree Fitness Method, which uses slow and controlled full-body movements with constant tension to work muscle fibers to failure, forcing them to rebuild a more sculpted, stronger and solid practitioner. The experience is a high-energy, small-group training class done on the patented Megaformer, which is described as a cross between a Pilates reformer and Total Body Gym. Following the success of [solidcore]’s first DC location, CEO and founder Anne Mahlum decided to open a second location, tapping local architecture and design firm //3877 to do the job.

[solidcore] studios can be found in or around mixed-use, multi-unit residential buildings in urban areas, encouraging customers to walk, bike or run to class and turning the individual exercise centers into health conscious cores of their respective communities. The spaces had to be “raw” and around 2,000-square feet to limit the class sizes to 10–12 practitioners. The Progression Place building in Shaw, located at 1821 7th St., NW, fit the needs perfectly for [solidcore]’s second DC studio.

//3877 completed the first [solidcore] fitness studio in D.C. and incorporated their original design concept into the new 2,000-square-foot space, creating a utilitarian yet intimate workout venue within a warm, inviting environment. The design mixes materials in their raw and original states with delicate, clean touches exemplifying the large cross section of customers. The heart of the space is the studio in which each 50 minute workout is completed. Surrounding the studio are minimal restrooms, office storage and mechanical spaces along with a large reception area that not only welcomes waiting customers, but gives completed classes a location to cool down and celebrate the triumph of the past hour.

The results are incredible as six studios have been completed in Washington, DC  and the Midwest. Feedback from [solidcore] practitioners has been exceptionally positive, as they are not only challenged by the workout itself, but are also motivated by the studio’s unique environment. “For me, what separates solidcore from other studios or gyms is the atmosphere,” says Britty Shaw, a [solidcore] client. “I think the fact that everyone feels extremely challenged–regardless of their fitness level going in–is part of why it is such a unique and positive culture.” At [solidcore]’s Progression Place location, //3877’s carefully crafted design concept creates a space for clients and coaches to interact, bond, and drive each other to become stronger and healthier individuals.