Have a peek inside Underground Fitness in Valley Village, owned by two women who espouse a back-to-basics approach.

For fitness buffs and renegades alike.

  • Category
    Health, People
  • Written by
    Heather David
  • Photographed by
    Joe Tamel

Underground Fitness LA may be tucked in a Valley Village strip mall, but from the moment you step inside, it just feels cool. With cement floors and rock band posters plastering the walls, it has an industrial vibe and a mixed crowd that appears serious about working up a sweat.

“We’re not your traditional fitness studio,” explains co-owner Gen Levy, who sports several colorful tattoos.

“We’re your group of rebels and misfits of the fitness world who’ve banded together. Our studio is filled with people from all different backgrounds—financially, ethnically, sexual orientation, age, weight and injury. It’s a family in here,” the Chicago native adds.

Gen and co-owner, Kelly Proctor, first met in 2016 while working as instructors at another gym. They connected over a mutual interest in teaching proper form and technique.

“Kelly and I are really passionate about having a personal training certification. Especially since we’re working with super delicate parts of the body like the spine and hips,” says Gen.

The duo decided to offer a free “pop-up” class, spreading the word via social media.

“The next morning 30 people showed up to a park, at 8 a.m. in July. It was absolute magic,” Gen recalls.

For eight months they held renegade classes in empty dance studios and parks across the city. Buoyed by their success, they decided to open their first brick-and-mortar location in Valley Village in April.

Group classes include Riot, which combines 20 minutes of strength training followed by 30 minutes of indoor cycling, BootyCore aimed at firing up the glutes and midsection, and the circuit training session, Sunday Funday.

Kelly, who grew up in the Valley, says after seeing so many exercise trends come and go, she believes simplicity is often the best option: “We don’t feel the need to get crazy fancy with everything because in reality getting fancy in fitness does not necessarily change the quality of your workout.”

undergroundfitnessla.com  |  12506 Magnolia Blvd., Valley Village