Over the last year, we’ve had the chance to work with the [solidcore] team, assisting them in implementing construction software to help with the expansion of their boutique pilates studios.
In March, the unthinkable happened – the coronavirus pandemic hit and changed how we do just about everything. The fitness industry has been widely affected, companies like [solidcore] have been forced to change and innovate. With that being said, there is no slowing [solidcore] and Anne Mahlum down, she is an entrepreneur, innovator, and philanthropist.
This interview features Anne Mahlum, C.E.O of [solidcore], an intense full-body workout that combines Pilates and strength training. [solidcore] continue to grow and scale their pilates studios across the US with over 70 studios and counting.
Q. Tell us about your business and why you started it?
A. [solidcore] is a 50-minute, high-intensity low-impact class that uses slow, controlled movements to break down your muscles and build them back stronger – intensified pilates would be the best descriptor. After discovering a similar workout while on a trip to LA, I fell completely in love with the style of workout, and thought that i might be able to make some tweaks and make it even better. I opened my first studio in DC in 2013 and haven’t looked back.
Q. How are people staying connected and fit at home with the [solidcore] community?
A. We launched an at-home format about 10 days after the stay at home orders went into effect. We have seen a great response – people are in love not only with the workout, but with the community. By bringing back our coaches and recreating – as best we could – the class vibe, we have been able to keep that connection.
Q. How do you feel your industry has shifted?
A. The fitness industry is really going to need to rethink how it approaches business. That is everything from class capacity, class format, the relationship with landlords, customer economics and general comfort with being in a studio or gym – really all aspects of the business We are lucky that our class format allows us to keep things fairly status quo, so we will be able to provide a similar class to the one we offered pre-COVID.
Q. What are you most proud of right now?
A. I have been so proud of my team who stepped up and put their trust in me. They took pay cuts and worked more – I love seeing their dedication to the company and how important it is to them. It is not just a workout, but something they are a part of and proud of.
Q.What do you hope we all learn or take away from this experience?
A. The importance of putting trust in your team and the value of hard work. We wouldn’t have made it this far without powering through when times got tough. It would have been really easy to throw in the towel, and I hope we all realize that no matter the challenge – perseverance and commitment gets you through.
Q. Which specific place in your area are you most looking forward to visiting once this is all over?
A. [solidcore] – obviously!
Q. What words of encouragement do you have for your customers?
A. We are still going to be here when the stay at home orders lift. We cannot wait to have clients – old and new – back under the blue lights sweating with us. We have made it through tough times before and we will have to again – stay strong, and see you soon.
We can’t wait to see you continue to grow, help people achieve their goals and push through these challenges.
Wishing you all the success!
The Harbr Team