All female-owned fitness boutique aims for uplifting workout experience
by Lily Cope
CHARLESTON, SC - Along a corner on Meeting Street in downtown Charleston, lies a small fitness boutique known as The Works.
A common perception of the phrase “working out” often brings feelings of dread.
But The Works makes going to a workout exciting.
And part of that is due to its atmosphere, emphasized by being female-owned.
The Works, which opened in 2019, focuses on empowering everyone who walks in.
“Our intention is to help people get out of their heads and into their bodies," says co-owner Carter Foxworth.
Reed Petty said she started going to The Works for “a piece of wisdom.”
“A lot of times I feel I get a lot more from them than I do from a therapist,” added Petty, who now works at the front desk. “They make you feel very supported and your ego a lot better.”
Petty felt a part of the community and wanted to work somewhere that she could “look up to the women who own it and look at them as role models.”
Mia Kronski, who works at the front desk as well, says working at the studio almost feels like a “sisterhood.”
“Working in a woman-owned studio really is just a different type of uplifting experience that you wouldn't get working anywhere else,” Kronski says. ”Your job is to literally uplift each other and make the community better and push each other to do better.”
Kronski used to loathe going to workout classes, and then she discovered The Works.
And she was immediately a frequent rider in Foxworth’s classes.
“Carter remembered my name and I was just a classpass rider out of a room of 30 other women in that studio,” Kronski said. “I was just one of them. And she still remembered my name after the first time I rode. Then she had me going back for all of her classes.”
Soon after Kronski's constant appearances at The Works, the college student told Foxworth she wanted a job at the studio - and Foxworth hired her on the spot.
“You can just tell she wants what's best for everybody and she wants her studio to thrive and she's there to push you and make sure that happens,” says Kronski.
Chandler Frisbee, an instructor at the yoga and cycling studio, has been at The Works since opening day and has watched the business grow into a community.
“People, you know, go through it, or people want to share about themselves and people want, an outlet to move their body and to feel like they can be a part of something,” she said. “It made me realize how crucial that [fitness] is to survival. I know that sounds dramatic, but it's so true.”
Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, The Works kept its clients busy. And its popularity during an uncertain time speaks to its community.
Only a year-old business at that point, The Works offered classes via Zoom in which sometimes over 100 people joined in.
And while the business is women-owned, both the fitness and cycling studios employ all genders and support a diverse community.
“We have to incorporate everyone in a way,” Frisbee said. "If we really believe in community and believe in diversity and believe in, you know, female rights, we have to also believe men and people who are non-binary get equal rights."
The Works community employs a total of 50 women and men and focuses on employing “people who are willing to do the work, grow, learn, have open conversations, and care about this business as much as I do,” says Foxworth.
Foxworth adds that its main focus is to empower everyone who walks into the studio.
“We want to help people get out of their heads and into their bodies so they can find the power that lies within them to then go out and do good in our world and face life challenges,” Foxworth says.