The Row House ‘pulls together’ a grand opening
WESTPORT — The row machine, once a dusty device in the corner of a gym, has moved to the center of both a growing fitness trend and an empire named the Row House.
The Row House, an indoor rowing studio, opened its first Connecticut location on April 25 at 380 Post Road in Westport.
The row room is equipped with several row machines, upbeat music and a dark, almost club-like atmosphere lit with green glowing lights. The studio’s lobby is bright with its slogan in large black letters on the wall, which reads: PULL. TOGETHER.
Owners Dana and Rob Montefusco, of Redding, were drawn to the fitness franchise because of this slogan, Dana said, because it emphasized a team effort environment that was inclusive and accessible.
The Montefuscos both liked working out together and helping people, so opening the Row House became a way to help others reach their fitness goals together.
“Some people have never gotten into something that spoke to them,” Dana said, and rowing changes that.
The exercises are low impact, yet full-body workouts that engage 85 percent of your muscles, according to Dana. She said it allows for a much more diverse group of participants, in terms of ages and athletic ability.
Husband and wife Eric Von Frohlich and Debra Strougo are the founders and owners of the Row House franchise and were there during the studio’s opening. The duo own and operate four New York studios, and the franchise has since grown to 24 states, according to their website.
While there seemed to be a growing interest in rowing from outdoor rowers, runners, yoga participants or those with just curiosity, Strougo said, “It took the Row House to say this is how we’re going to do it in a group.”
Strougo said having a location in Westport seemed like an obvious next step, as she considers it a fitness-forward town.
The studio will run six different types of classes, with time slots available in the early morning, afternoon or evening; and is offering 20 percent off of its unlimited monthly membership.
Above all, Strougo said, “My goal is to make you more empowered than when you first came in.”