When Jeff Chang and Karen Lar Rieu—the brother-sister team behind Wet Feet Hawaii—aren't scrawling on the ocean's waves with their paddles, they're usually in their shop chatting with customers about their experiences. Behind their counter, they sell and rent gear, and orchestrate a team of paddleboard racers, an ocean conservationist, and water enthusiasts as they lead lessons and tours.
During the eco tour, a conservationist—who was the first woman to cross the Molokai Channel on a standup paddleboard—teaches the basics while leading tour members to conservation areas to expound on the problem of plastics in the ocean. On the downwind tours, some of Hawaii’s top standup-paddleboard racers guide and coach guests to tackle the infamous downwind runs of Oahu. With four different levels to suit all experiences and 5- to 12-mile runs, tour members can challenge themselves without challenging every dolphin they see to a race. In recognition of their service to the sport and the community, Honolulu magazine named Wet Feet Hawaii Best Standup Paddle Shop in Honolulu for 2010.
It’s common to see TRX suspension bands wrapped around the palm trees on the beach near Ala Moana Boulevard. The site is home to SOHI Fitness’ outdoor boot camps, which are run by owner and ACE-certified personal trainer Megan Clark, who has a degree in kinesiology and is the only trainer in Hawaii able to certify military personnel as TRX instructors, and her team of experienced trainers. To keep their clients engaged during their indoor and outdoor boot camps, pyramid workouts, and personal-training sessions, they rely on the TRX suspension-training system’s array of exercises, as well as sports drills. These may include sandbag lifting, agility-ladder running, and plyometrics.
Arthur Murray has been a leading name in franchise dance since 1912, when the entrepreneur began selling mail-order dance lessons. Expanding his reach, he enlisted teachers to spread his signature dance lessons on first-class steamships and skyrocketed to fame in the '30s after introducing the public to such dances as the Lambeth Walk and the Big Apple. By the 1950s, Arthur and his wife, Kathryn, were hosting their own highly popular TV show on ABC, The Arthur Murray Dance Party, which ran for 12 years. Today, Arthur Murray's team prepares students for rug cutting at special events and weekend nightclub jaunts. Clients who arrive to lessons partner-less will be paired up with instructors to help assess their current skill level and make recommendations on the most appropriate program. Throughout group lessons, instructors teach the foundations of dances from a long list of styles that range from Latin to country-western, helping students to learn basic step patterns, timing, and the ability to lead or follow. These lessons are then used as a foundation for clients to learn more intermediate and advanced moves.
Equipment: Sorinex rig
Students should bring: towel
Average class length: 60 minutes
Number of Staff: 5?10 people
Class location: Mix of indoor and outdoor classes
Registration required: Yes
Good for beginners: Yes
Guests allowed: Yes
Parking: Parking lot
Pro Tip: Come a few minutes early to fill out a liability form.
Exercise is challenging, and people frequently give up on their fitness routines. How do you keep clients motivated?
[We have] different workouts every day. We do beach workouts [and] workouts dedicated to fallen military personnel. [We] also offer kids' classes. CrossFit is a great way to meet people who have similar goals as you.
What is the biggest mistake you see people make when trying to get fit on their own?
Not being dedicated and understanding it will be hard work. It's hard work to change your habits, but the payoffs are worth it. Also, people tend to not have proper form when working out on their own, which can lead to injuries. Safety is our utmost concern for our members.
Besides working out, what else can clients do to spend their time at your facility?
Hang out, socialize and mobilize.
Is there anything else you want to add that we didn't cover?
We offer an unsupervised kids room. We also offer personal training, and we will have a strength room with programming as we grow.
As one of CrossFit’s first proponents on the island, Bryant Powers was just happy to find some friends to work out with. After discovering fellow CrossFit buffs online, Bryant began hosting group workouts in Kapiolani Park with his friends Craig and Hollis. Although only two people attended that first class, the trio kept hosting classes, shuttling between the park and Bryant’s garage, until they had a large enough following to open their own gym. Several years later, CrossFit Oahu now operates five locations spread across the island and cultivates a community devoted to results-oriented fitness. Incoming students work their way up to intense WODs with instruction in Olympic lifts and proper form. Passionate instructors help busy working professionals burn fat and build muscle, or ramp up workouts in preparation for CrossFit competitions. Members also cross-train in MMA striking, mountain climbing, or extreme rolodexing.
Mad Tiger Academy prides itself on fostering a community where all participants—men, women, and children—feel welcome. Teaching Gracie jujitsu and muay thai, the instructors arm students of all skill levels with techniques to stave off altercations while boosting self-confidence. In addition to teaching martial arts, the team also leads fitness boot camps, yoga, and Zumba classes.