Judy Rae

Best of the Beach 2019 – Sports

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Hermosa Cyclery Steve Collins leads the “Bike Hermosa” entry in the city’s St. Patrick’s Day parade each year. This year, the parade is on Saturday, March 16. Photo by Kevin Cody

Bike Shop

Hermosa Cycle

Hermosa Cyclery, has served local residents and visitors since its founding in 1974 by Harold Schumaker. The facility Hermosa Beach shop is just yards from the 22-mile-long, South Bay Bicycle Trail, which runs from Redondo Beach to Santa Monica.

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Upon ‘Shu’s’ passing in 2002, he willed the store to four young, longtime employees — Steve Collins, Larry Burke, Ken Liebowitz and Mark McNeill.

The friendship between Larry, Ken, Mark and myself continues to become stronger as we meet for a couple of hours each week,” Steve Collins said.

Hermosa Cyclery is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. and offers “free air” for bike tires, along with rentals of bikes, skates and beach gear.  

But in another sense, Hermosa Cyclery is everywhere. It’s tough to think of a civic event in Hermosa to which the long-tenured business does not contribute. From donations to Shakespeare by the Sea to arriving with a sleigh full of kids bikes for the annual Holiday Toy Drive, Hermosa Cyclery operates on a principal of investing in the community in which it operates.

This has paid off recently, as Hermosa Cyclery confronts changes in Hermosa and the bike business. The Strand and Pier Hotel project is set to transform northwest edge of Pier Plaza. The project is still in the midst of its environmental review process, but Collins has assured its loyal customers that Hermosa Cyclery will be a part of what emerges. Jeanette Oghigian, the longtime property owner of Hermosa Cyclery, sold the property last year but remains a loyal fan of the business.

“She ushered us into the business aspect of owning the shop,” Collins said. “Although we have a new landlord and new lease, we’re still here and plan to be for many years to come. We’ve been told we will be a part of the hotel that is scheduled to be built on this property in the next few years.”

An even bigger change is on the horizon with the rise of “shared mobility devices,” including e-bikes and, more prominently, dockless scooter rentals. Companies such as Bird and Lime are exploding in popularity, and their cheap business model threatens long-established businesses like Hermosa Cyclery. Over the past year Collins has proved a forceful advocate in front of local governments considering the issue, pointing out the issues that go along with the devices and the potential for irresponsible use. He and others have so far gotten the Beach Cities to listen and clamp down on the devices: a decision that says almost as much about them as it does the kind of business Hermosa Cyclery runs.

Hermosa Cyclery employs skilled mechanics and offers everything from a simple tune-up to general repairs to complete overhauls. Accessories for sale include seats, locks, gloves, helmets, horns, handlebars, head lights, drink holders, baskets and racks.

On Saturday, March 17, Hermosa Cyclery will once again be joining the 25th annual St. Patrick’s Parade in Hermosa Beach with its “Bike Hermosa” entry.

Riders are encouraged to sign up at the store. Prior to the ride, a Best Bike Contest will be held with different categories such as Best Decorated and Best Kids Bike

“We have about 50 entrants and get to see amazing bikes including a wood bike, classics and the group known as the Low Rydaz.”

Hermosa Cyclery

20 13th St., Hermosa Beach

(310) 374-7816 hermosacyclery.com

Runner-up: The Old Bike Shop

430 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach

(310) 376-2914 theoldbikeshop.com

Training Center (Chain)

Bay Club

Right in the heart of the South Bay, the El Segundo club’s expansive 105,000-square-foot layout offers a resort-style destination, complete with casual dining, Kids Club, indoor basketball courts, reformer Pilates, and indoor swimming. A $10 million renovation included Connect Conference Suites with conference room and individual working spaces, plus an all-new yoga studio. Overlooking the ocean, the Redondo Beach location offers everything from a childcare play area, to outdoor group training, to a sparkling outdoor pool. Patrons have unlimited access to the recently enhanced fitness spaces, featuring all-new strength equipment, cardio equipment, along with all-levels group classes, a racquetball court, boxing studio, and an indoor-outdoor cardio deck.

Bay Club

2250 Park Pl., El Segundo

(310) 643-6878

Bay Club

819 N. Harbor Dr., Redondo Beach

(310)376-9443

Bayclubs.com

Runner-up: Equinox South Bay

5400 Rosecrans Ave., Hawthorne

(310) 727-9543

550 Deep Valley Dr., Suite 212, Rolling Hills Estates

(310) 697-1016 equnox.com

Personal Trainer

Lou Sidella at Body One Fitness

Body One Fitness offers High Intensity and Cardio Conditioning (Hi-Intensity) workouts in small group classes.

“With all the facilities and trainers in the South Bay, to receive this award multiple years is pretty special. It’s an honor that so many Body One members have put their trust in me to help achieve their fitness goals. Their loyalty and support keeps me going,” Sidella said.

Open seven days a week, the classes change daily, using weights-barbells, kettlebells, dumbbells and cardio interval training designed for all fitness levels.

Lou Sidella at Body One Fitness

201 Herondo St., Ste 100, Redondo Beach

(310) 379-5425 bodyonefitness.com

Runner-up: Wendolyn Ramos Lemert at Beach Cities Training

1312 Aviation Blvd., #104, Redondo Beach

(424) 265-8242 beachcitiestraining.com

Pilates

Coreology Fitness Manhattan Beach

Coreology has redefined workouts, featuring the XFormer machine. Clients just beginning a workout regimen are welcome with two programs available — the XFormer (all levels) and Tread X (cardio + strength). A class package or membership must be purchased prior to reserving a spot in class.

“I was born and raised in the South Bay and this is such an honor,” owner Sarah Martz said.   “The workout happens to be the best workout out there, but more than that, the people who work here and the clients who spend their time here are really what makes Coreology special.”

“All too often, businesses forget that the real reason for their existence is to improve the lives of anyone who comes through their doors. Coreology does exactly that and I hope we get to continue doing that for years to come.”

Coreology Fitness Manhattan Beach

2403 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Manhattan Beach

(310) 546-2880 coreologyfitness.com

Runner-up: ROC Steady Pilates

1617 S. Pacific coast Hwy., Suite G, Redondo Beach

(424) 404-0160 info@rocsteadypilates.com

(424) 404-0160 info@rocsteadypilates.com

Surfboard shaper ( shop)

Dennis Jarvis

Dennis Jarvis at work during Surf Fest on the Hermosa Pier. Photo by Mike Balzer

The surfboard shaper puts in a lonely day’s work, caked in dust and accompanied (hopefully) by the whirl of a ventilation system. One gets an idea of just how tough shaping a surfboard is when other people step inside the bay for one of Dennis Jarvis’ shaping tutorials. Originally conceived of as “the ultimate Father’s Day present,” the sessions take place inside the Spyder founder’s space on Fifth Street in Hermosa Beach. Those who secure spots get to make a board, but the real thrill is watching Jarvis pace around the sawhorse like some kind of jungle cat. He has no trouble being heard over the buzz of the planer as he tries to communicate the his experiences. Where newcomers are tentative and shaky, Jarvis is decisive and smooth, shearing off sections of foam the way a carpenter might use a circular saw.

It’s the only way Jarvis could have managed his prolific output of boards, but the difference, of course, is that a 2×4 doesn’t have to remain stable during a fins-out turn or an eight-foot Hermosa closeout. Over the course of his four decades in the industry, Jarvis has shaped boards for the world’s best surfers, including legends such as Tom Curren. That doesn’t look likely to stop anytime soon: a constant churn of the South Bay’s best up-and-comers still find themselves at his door asking for boards and seeking to put the Spyder emblem on their nose. Jarvis shapes every Spyder board himself, and has recently become a passionate advocate for protecting the domestic board manufacturing industry from foreign factories that mass produce boards with cheap labor. It’s a cause that is easily forgotten by the cost-conscious surfer looking to pick up a board off the rack, but harder to dismiss after seeing a craftsman like Jarvis at work.

Spyder Surfboards was also our voters choice for snowboard equipment and accessories, including a full range of snowboard bindings, jackets and pants. Spyder is also our first choice for men’s clothing, thanks to their local brands such as HippyTree and old school brands like Vans skate shoes.

Men’s clothing

Ski/snowboard shop

Spyder

The surf apparel industry is in an odd spot. After years of huge profits, the likes of Billabong, Rip Curl and Quiksilver face declining margins. And the stores that carry them are battling the same pressures from online shopping facing brick-and-mortar locations everywhere. But in the midst of this contraction, Spyder has managed not just to maintain its presence, but to expand.
With the opening of its Manhattan Beach store in 2017, Spyder now has three South Bay locations. Its wide selection of men’s wear has evolved out of recognition that even people who surf very well may no longer want to look like they just rolled out of the lineup. Along with the traditional tees and boardshorts, Spyder offers a selection of brands and styles as suitable for kicking back as they are for showing off.

And although they are happy to get guys suited for the cold snaps Southern California has recently been enduring, they also have jackets, pants and boots for the times when it’s really important to stay warm: skiing and snowboarding. Along with apparel, the store carries hard goods from Burton, GNU and more. And if you are ever unsure what the conditions are in the high Sierra or the local mountains, just take a walk past Spyder’s Pacific Coast Highway Storefront: come winter time, the marquee features an up-to-date take on the latest storms, usually in the form of a rhyme.

Spyder Surfboards

2461 Pacific Coast Hwy., Hermosa Beach

(310) 374-8276

65 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach

(310) 374-2494

1116 Manhattan Ave., Manhattan Beach

Spydersurf.com

Runner-up: ET Surfboards

904 Aviation Blvd., Hermosa Beach

(310) 379-7660 etsurf.com

Sports Retailer

DICK’S Sporting Goods

DICK’S caters to all level of athletes and sports enthusiasts with a wide variety of equipment, clothing, footwear, replica jerseys and officially licensed merchandise. The golf department has golf shoes, golf balls and new clubs with cutting-edge technology. The store also offers camping gear, hunting and fishing supplies and quality kayaks as well departments featuring archery, racquet sports and bicycling with repairs, tune-ups and accessory installations available.

For baseball players, the free HitTrax batting cage is used to test and measure launch angle, exit velocity, distance and other stats.

DICK’S Sporting Goods

Del Amo Fashion Center

21800 Hawthorne Blvd., #301, Torrance

(424) 206-4240 stores.dickssportinggoods.com

Runner-up: REI

1800 Rosecrans Ave., Ste E., Manhattan Beach

(310) 727-0728 rei.com

Surf shop

Skateboard shop

ET surf employees with the tools of the trade. Photo by Ryan McDonald

ET Surf

Matt Warshaw, the dean of surf historians and a one-time ET Surf shop rat, has said that his former employer does something very few surf shops manage to, and does it extremely well: treat customers and employees with respect. With almost five decades of history in the South Bay, ET Surf is a long-tenured business in an industry pushed and pulled by short-term trends. (Remember neon wetsuits?). Founder Eddie Talbot opened the shop with shaper Pat Ryan amid the chaos wrought in the board building industry by the rise of the short board, but has managed to weather every trend by sticking to its roots. When ET celebrated its 45th Anniversary in 2017, local legends including Chris Frohoff and Derek Levy were quick to weigh in and call the Aviation Boulevard shop their go-to choice for equipment.

The shop relies on a stable of long-tenured employees. Manager Dan Connell is a former Big Wave challenge winner. In the four-wheel department, long-tenured skate manager Kevin “Worm” Anderson boast decades of stories and scars, and ET’s skate team regularly places at the top of Globe’s annual shop competition. Walk in, and you’ll see gear and clothing spread out before you; dozens of decks line back wall, and cashiers stay disciplined by wrapping grip tape when they aren’t helping a customer. Upstairs, a vast assortment of boards await the curious customer, from high-performance blades to forgiving mid-lengths. It can be dizzying to the newcomer, but take heart: some of the best surfers and skaters in the area are there to be your guide.

ET Surfboards

904 Aviation Blvd., Hermosa Beach

(310) 379-7660 etsurf.com

Runner-up: Spyder Surfboards

2461 Pacific Coast Hwy., Hermosa Beach

(310) 374-8276

65 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach

(310) 374-2494

1116 Manhattan Ave., Manhattan Beach

Spydersurf.com

Best surfboard shaper (underground)

Jon Mangiagli with one of his freshly glassed boards. Photo by Ryan McDonald

Jon MangiagliThe walls outside shaper Jon Mangiagli’s glassing room are covered with pictures from South Bay surfing’s illustrious past and present. A vintage shot from legend LeRoy Grannis sits next to a large framed print of a deceptively pristine barrel on the north side of the Hermosa Pier. And while they do give the place a bit more atmosphere than the average shaping bay, it’s not clear if the photos are hung as decoration for the customers or for Mangiagli himself, as a reminder of the legacy of surfboard manufacturing that he is now contributing to, one board at a time.

“That’s the best part about it, is the history of this area, and hopefully keeping the tradition alive,” Mangiagli said. “The Beach Cities have been so influenced by surfboard building, surfing in general. It’s cool to be a part of that.”

Mangiagli makes boards of all shapes and sizes: twin fin fishes, high-performance blades, mid-lengths and traditional longboards. But like all shapers, Mangiagli said he has a bit of a bias toward “what I think is fun to ride.” And when he isn’t manning a planer, Mangiagli can usually be found hunting down a sandbar somewhere, creating a feedback loop for his designs.

“It goes back and forth. Sometimes, I’ll be in the water, and think, ‘I should do this or that for these conditions.’ Then I’ll go back to the shop and make it, and when I get out in the water, I start thinking, ‘Ah, it turns out it should be a bit more like this,’” he said.

Mangiagli’s Cypress Street operation has become a go-to for in the know surfers seeking a new board from a shaper who listens closely, and isn’t afraid to throw in ideas of his own. Recently, he’s worked with local pro Dan Zaun on a series of swallow-tail step-up boards. Both shaper and surfer have been pleasantly surprised with the results. As his boards are found under the feet of more and more surfers, Mangiagli is going where the foam and the waves may carry him.

“I want to push boundaries. If someone comes up with a good idea,  I’ll think, ‘Whoa, that sounds cool. Let’s do it.’”

Jon Mangiagli/ Mangiagli Manufacturing

640 Cypress St., Hermosa Beach

(310) 372-5858 mangiaglisurfboards.com

Runner-up: Jose Barahona Surfboards

640 Cypress St., Hermosa Beach

(310) 880-9782 barahonasurf.com

Golf Course

Lakes at El Segundo

Owned by the City of El Segundo, The Lakes is a municipal golf course that has become one of the best 9-hole golf and practice facilities in the country. Opened in June of 1994, the course is operated by the professional management group of Lane/Donovan Golf Partners LLC and features 2 par 4’s. Par 3 shots range from 75-185 yards. The last hole is a short 261 yard par 4.

The facility also has a lower and upper deck driving range, a large putting green and a practice bunker and chip shots.

Lakes at El Segundo

400 S. Sepulveda Blvd., El Segundo

(310) 322-0202 golfthelakes.com

Runner-up: Westdrift Manhattan Beach

1400 Parkview Ave., Manhattan Beach

(310) 546-7511 marriott.com

Sports Training Center (Independent)

Melt Rx Fitness

Melt R Fitness offers 60 minute High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workout, guaranteed to keep burning calories for the next 36 hours. Their heart rate based workouts are scientifically proven to melt body fat, spike metabolism and increase energy. Melt Rx Fitness utilizes Styku 3D body scans, and offers the Simmer ($99.99/mo.) and Burn ($109.99/mo.) programs.

Melt Rx Fitness

531 N. Pacific Coast Hwy., Redondo Beach

(310) 922-2185 meltrxfit.com

Runner-up: Body One Fitness

201 Herondo St., #100, Redondo Beach

(310) 379-5425 bodyonefitness.com

Yoga

Soho Yoga

Hermosa’s Soho Yoga has options. Gotta get a workout in before work? Try one of the 5 a.m. classes. Not feeling the heat? Head upstairs to the unheated room. Want to try something different? Try a powerglide class, with ice skate-like gliders, and even seasoned yogis will feel like they’re starting over.

Since opening in 2015, Soho Yoga has made its mark on Hermosa with an attitude that is right in between serious workout and not taking yourself too seriously. The heated studio downstairs mimics the conditions of doing yoga in India, where it all began, but comes with a diversity of classes that is tough to match. It’s built up a loyal and expansive following, so try and arrive early or sign up for classes online. RM BoB

Soho Yoga

1242 Hermosa Ave., Hermosa Beach

(310) 379-3200 sohoyoga.com

Runner-up: Beach Cities Yoga

936 Hermosa Ave., #105, Hermosa Beach

(424) 333-4200 beachcigtiesyoga.com

Surf Shop

Dive N’ Surf crew Mike Silva, Alex Hixson, Marcello Malinca and Ilana Deluca. Photo by Kevin Cody

Dive N’ Surf

Hap Jacobs began shaping boards over half a century ago at Dive N’ Surf, which he owned with diving pioneer Bev Morgan. In 1953, Jacobs and Velzy sold Dive N’ Surf to the Meistrell twins, Bob and Bill. The Meistrell family still owns Dive N’ Surf but Jacobs is winding down his shaping career and has consigned his last few boards to Dive N’ Surf.

But just because Jacob’s boards represent the span of modern surfing doesn’t mean they should be consigned to hanging on wall. WaxTrak, a new product offered at Dive N’ surf, is a sheet of thin plastic that can be applied to the deck of surfboard and waxed. When the WaxTrak is removed, the wax and tar comes off with it, leaving the board deck looking new (minus any compression dings).

Dive N’ Surf manager Chris Kelly said the WaxTrak is popular with the pros, who like to sell off their boards at the end of every season. Also new at the shop, he said is a full range of surf and dive wetsuits.

“We’ll always be a Body Glove store because the Meistrells invented those suits. But we now have full lines of other top manufacturers, he said.

This time of year, as the surf backs off, Kelly said, Dive N’ Surf is offering free introductory  SCUBA lessons in its 92 degree pool. KC BoB

Dive N’ Surf

504 N. Broadway, Redondo Beach

(310) 372-8423 divensurf.com

Runner-up: Pacific Wilderness Inc.

1719 S. Pacific Ave., San Pedro

(310) 833-2422 pacificwilderness.com

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