CrossFit Venice WOD
If you go ahead and read the rest of this amazing Venice Beach article, you'll see why we chose the exercises that we did for this fun CrossFit Venice WOD. Here it is!
CrossFit Venice WOD
20 meter Tire Flip
20 meter Spiderman Crawl
10 Arnold Presses
Venice was founded as a seaside resort town in 1905. It was an independent city until 1926, when it merged with Los Angeles. Today, Venice is known for its canals, beaches and circus-like Ocean Front Walk, a two-and-a-half-mile pedestrian-only promenade that features performers, fortune-tellers, artists, and vendors. Venice lies in the city of Los Angeles in the Westside region of Los Angeles County.
Venice Beach, originally called "Venice of America," was founded by tobacco millionaire Abbot Kinney in 1905 as a beach resort town, 14 miles west of Los Angeles. Abbot and his partner Francis Ryan had bought two miles of oceanfront property south of Santa Monica in 1891. They built a resort town on the north end of the property, called Ocean Park, which was soon annexed to Santa Monica. After Ryan died, Kinney and his new partners continued building south of Navy Street. After the partnership dissolved in 1904, Kinney, who had won the marshy land on the south end of the property in a coin flip with his former partners, began to build a seaside resort like its namesake in Italy. Venice was originally granted by the Mexican government to Machados and Talamantes in 1839.
When Venice of America opened on July 4, 1905, Kinney had dug several miles of canals to drain the marshes for his residential area, built a 1,210-foot long pleasure pier with a ship restaurant, auditorium, and dance hall, constructed a hot salt-water plunge, and built a block-long arcaded business street with Venetian architecture. Tourists, mostly arriving on the "Red Cars" of the Pacific Electric Railway from Los Angeles and Santa Monica, then rode Venice's miniature railroad and gondolas to tour the town. But the biggest attraction was Venice's mile-long gently sloping beach. Cottages and housekeeping tents were available for rent.
The population was 3,119 residents in 1910 then soon exceeded 10,000; the town drew 50,000 to 150,000 tourists on weekends.
Attractions on the Abbot Kinney pier became more amusement-oriented by 1910, when the Virginia Reel, Venice Scenic Railway, Whip, Racing Derby, Aquarium and other rides and game booths were added. Since the business district was allotted only three one-block-long streets, and the City Hall was more than a mile away, other competing business districts developed. Unfortunately, this created a fractious political climate. Kinney, however, governed with an iron hand and kept things in check. When he died in November 1920, Venice became harder to govern. With the amusement pier burning six weeks later in December 1920, and Prohibition (which had begun the previous January), the town's tax revenue was severely affected.
The Kinney family rebuilt their amusement pier quickly to compete with Ocean Park's Pickering Pleasure Pier and the new Sunset Pier. Why Tire Flips? When it opened it had two roller coasters, a new Racing Derby, a Noah's Ark, a Mill Chutes, and many other rides. By 1925 with the addition of a third coaster, a tall Dragon Slide, Fun House, and Flying Circus aerial ride, it was the finest amusement pier on the West Coast. Several hundred thousand tourists visited on weekends. In 1923 Charles Lick built the Lick Pier at Navy Street in Venice, adjacent to the Ocean Park Pier at Pier Avenue in Ocean Park. Another pier was planned for Venice in 1925 at Leona which is now Washington Street.
For the amusement of the public, Kinney hired aviators to do aerial stunts over the beach. One of them, movie aviator and Venice airport owner B. H. DeLay, implemented the first lighted airport in the United States on DeLay Field (previously known as Ince Field). He also initiated the first aerial police in the nation, after a marine rescue attempt was thwarted. DeLay also performed many of the world's first aerial stunts for motion pictures in Venice.
Politics: By 1925, Venice's politics had become unmanageable. Its roads, water and sewage systems badly needed repair and expansion to keep up with its growing population. When it was proposed that Venice be annexed to Los Angeles, the board of trustees voted to hold an election. Annexation was approved in the election in November 1925, and Venice was formally annexed to Los Angeles in 1926.
Los Angeles had annexed the Disneyland of its day and proceeded to remake Venice in its own image. It was felt that the town needed more streets, not canals and most of them were paved in 1929 after a three-year court battle led by canal residents. They wanted to close Venice's three amusement piers but had to wait until the first of the tidelands leases expired in 1946.
In 1929, oil was discovered south of Washington Street on the Venice Peninsula. Within two years, 450 oil wells covered the area, and drilling waste clogged the remaining waterways. It was a short-lived boom that provided needed income to the community, which suffered during the Great Depression. The wells produced oil into the 1970s.
Why Crawling? Los Angeles had neglected Venice so long that, by the 1950s, it had become the "Slum by the Sea." With the exception of new police and fire stations in 1930, the city spent little on improvements after annexation. The city did not pave Trolleyway (Pacific Avenue) until 1954 when county and state funds became available. Low rents for run-down bungalows attracted predominantly European immigrants (including a substantial number of Holocaust survivors) and young counterculture artists, poets, and writers. The Beat Generation hung out at the Gas House on Ocean Front Walk and at Venice West Cafe on Dudley. Police raids were frequent during that era.
Why Pistols? The Venice Shoreline Crips and V-13 the Latino Venice 13 are the two main gangs active in Venice. V13 dates back to the 1950s, while the Shoreline Crips were founded in the early 1970s, making them one of the first Crip sets in Los Angeles. In the 1990s V-13 and the Shoreline Crips were involved in a bloody, massive war over crack cocaine sales territories and yes they used lots of pistols among many other weapons. While violence has decreased, they continue to remain active in Venice. By 2002, numbers of gang members in Venice were reduced due to gentrification and increased police presence. According to a Los Angeles City Beat article, by 2003, many Los Angeles Westside gang members resettled in the city of Inglewood. Author John Brodie challenges the idea of gentrification causing change and commented "... the gunplay of the Shoreline Crips and the V-13 is as much a part of life in Venice as pit bulls playing with blond Labs at the local dog park."
Why Arnold presses? After the closing of the original Muscle Beach, bodybuilding attention shifted south to the somewhat lesser-known Venice Beach Weight Pen, operated by the Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Department. A small spartan weight pen was built near Windward Avenue in 1952, later replaced by the large current facility. During a complete renovation and Muscle Beach Venice redevelopment effort in 1990, the city placed a giant concrete barbell on the roof and bleachers for spectators.
Muscle Beach Venice refers also to a high concentration of weightlifting and fitness businesses in the area. Dave Draper, Larry Scott, Cali Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Danny Trejo, and Crips co-founder Stanley Tookie Williams used to be regulars, among many famous bodybuilders and actors who have trained there. Chet Yorton trained at Muscle Beach Venice in the early to mid-1960s to prepare for his victory over Arnold Schwarzenegger in the 1966 NABBA Mr. Universe contest. Today Muscle Beach is an open playground with a gated area that encloses weight lifting equipment, the second area is a sand box with gymnastic bars, rope climbing, and acrobatic bars. An episode of tv's Baywatch featured everyone's favorite wrestler Hulk Hogan training on Muscle Beach Venice.