CrossFit craze comes to Hyattsville area

February 8, 2015

Volunteers who helped assemble the pull-up rig, left to right: Vasco Mateus (College Park), Kim Webb (Takoma Park), Karen Smith (Hyattsville), Robert Murray (College Park). Photo courtesy Beth Mohr.

BY SCARLETT SALEM — It was only a matter of time before CrossFit came to the Hyattsville area. Some would argue that a recent resurgence in strength training may owe its momentum to the CrossFit workout movement slowly established from humble beginnings of notorious founder Greg Glassman. Glassman opened his first studio space in California in 2001. Since then, it has exploded on to the workout scene and now has a website packed with content, a publication, a CrossFit Games competition that gets ESPN air time, thousands of international members, and much more.

“In early 2013, a friend asked me if I wanted to try a CrossFit workout with him,” said Beth Mohr, owner of CrossFit Hyattsville, located in Edmonston. “I’m glad I did, because since then CrossFit has been the center of my fitness routine.” Mohr said there are over 12,000 CrossFit affiliates worldwide, though CrossFit gyms are more commonly referred to as ‘boxes.’

The workout is self-described as ‘a regimen of constantly varied, functional movements, performed at high intensity’ and goes beyond the workout by placing equal emphasis on a sense of community and healthy lifestyle.

While there are many CrossFit boxes located in and around Washington, DC, very few boxes exist in Prince George’s County. Also, CrossFit isn’t exactly the most affordable of gyms to join with pricing in DC ranging anywhere from $195 to $225 a month, depending upon the membership.

“When I decided I wanted to open a CrossFit gym, we looked at the affiliate finder map on CrossFit.com and realized there were several affiliates in DC and Montgomery County, but very few in Prince George’s County,” said Mohr. “We immediately thought Hyattsville would be a great location because of all the development happening along the Route 1 Corridor.”

But the journey was not as simple as just looking at a map as Mohr faced several challenges before she could launch. “One of the largest hurdles was finding a space that was zoned for our use as a matter of right,” said Mohr. “For a start-up business, going through the procedure to obtain an exception is too expensive and too uncertain. … Beyond zoning, it was difficult to find the right fit, whether it be because of size, location, condition of the space, parking, lease terms, etc.”

It took Mohr two years to overcome those logistical barriers.

And so far the community has rallied and she has received an outpouring of volunteer support. “People from Hyattsville to College Park to Takoma Park have volunteered their time to help paint, lay mats and assemble equipment, all because they want to us open as soon as possible,” she stated.

Mohr’s box likely won’t disappoint them. ‘At CrossFit Hyattsville, our focus will be on safety, community, results and fun. We want people to get a good workout and to do it in a safe and welcoming environment,’ she said.

Approximately 70 people showed up to the Jan. 30 open house.  Mohr said she considered the event amazing and she couldn’t be happier with how it went.

Mohr hopes to offer regular classes starting Monday, Feb. 15 and plans to offer two free community workouts on Saturday, Feb. 13.

The first CrossFit Hyattsville workout will be free and can be scheduled via the website, by emailing or calling the box. For more information on class schedule, how to get started, pricing, and more, head to the website at:  www.crossfithyattsville.com/

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