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Meet Nikki Jagd and Leah Hinkey of VIBE Volleyball Lab in El Segundo

Today we’d like to introduce you to Nikki Jagd and Leah Hinkey.

Nikki and Leah, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
It all started back in 2016! We were both coaching Club Volleyball and quickly realized how drama-filled and political it was getting. It was not only causing stress for us coaches but for the kids and parents as well. We decided to start a beach program called MB17volley where kids from all clubs in the area had an outlet. A fun, safe environment to play volleyball and workout with your friends.

This led to a bigger idea. The idea of VIBE.

We were lucky to have a family-friend who had some extra storage space in his warehouse. We came up with a business plan and presented it to him. He said, WHY NOT! We put the court in and starting building the weight room and, well, if you build it….. they will come! Kids started piling in and we were off and rolling!

We added trainers as we grew and fine-tuned our routine and business model as time went on. We learned a lot along the way and made a lot of positive changes. In fact, we are still learning and still growing.

We grew out of the storage space in 2019 and moved into a facility that was 3x the size!!! We were able to triple what we were able to provide for our athletes–Not only on the volleyball side but also in the “Performance Lab” or our weight room and also with College Counseling as the kids go through their recruiting process!

As of today, we are happy to say we have built that fun, positive learning environment for kids to come train and get better without the politics and without the drama….. just like we did at the beach in 2016.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Starting a business is never easy. You obviously have to make a lot of sacrifices — Your social life takes a back seat, you go on less trips with your family and you are also absolutely exhausted all the time…. BUT, we have been lucky along the way to not have any real problems. Until this current pandemic.

We had built up so much momentum in our new space and we were the busiest we had ever been. Then March 12th hits and we had to close our doors. Seeing the gym sit empty for two and a half months was heartbreaking and scary. We knew our kids needed us. They needed that outlet.

Government restrictions were lifted on gyms in June. WE WERE BACK!!!

The next obstacle was restructuring the way we run our business to meet the new regulations. How do we keep our trainers & athletes safe? How do we make everyone feel comfortable about being back in the gym? How do we keep our numbers low in the gym?

So far, so good. Everyone has been good about following the new rules and we are back on our feet.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with VIBE Volleyball Lab – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of and what sets you apart from others.
We are an elite volleyball and performance training facility open to all athletes, all skill levels, boys and girls. We have some of the best coaches in the country training for us, some National Team Members, Professional AVP Players, Olympians and College All-Americans, which makes us that much more special and unique.

Apart from wanting to be that outlet for athletes (some traveling from different states) and providing a positive learning environment, we also want to be able to provide everything volleyball under one roof…..We want to be the total package.

Our main service is Indoor Volleyball Private Lessons, 1-on-1 professional training in the “Volleyball Lab.” It’s a unique opportunity for the kid to really dial in on what they need to work on while learning proper technique. It’s hard to come by this individual attention in your everyday club practice and high school practice. We also offer group classes, beach volleyball lessons, College Counseling and Highlight Videos.

Another big attraction is our Performance Training in the “Performance Lab.” 1-on-1 and small group performance training. We utilize a piece of equipment, called the force plate, that performs a scientific assessment on the athlete’s movement qualities to identify their strengths and potential risks of injury. With this data, we create individualized training programs to maximize athlete’s performance and reduce injury risk.

What we are most proud of… The community we have built. Also known as our “VIBE Tribe”… There is never a “bad vibe” in the gym. Everyone is happy, working hard and determined to get better. We host an event to raise money for a charity at least once a year and the kids LOVE it. We also pride ourselves on our trainers. They each bring in a high level of experience and knowledge of the game. Everyone is learning from eachother. We also love being a part of the athlete’s journey–seeing them learn, grow and compete is everything to us.

We are also very proud of our new facility. It is top of the line, professional and one of a kind.

What are your plans for the future? What are you looking forward to or planning for – any big changes?
We want to expand!!!!! A great opportunity arose recently with the building next door and we just signed a lease for it this week! This new building will be our VIBE Headquarters with an extra space for our ever-growing Performance Lab and more exciting things that we will be able to offer our athletes including Physical Therapy which we are extremely excited about! We will also have space to grow our College Counseling Department where we will be able to help kids through their recruiting process and on to the next step of their volleyball careers.

Pricing:

  • Classes range from $30-$45
  • Private Training ranges from $75-$135

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Daniel Freitas with DFRITO MEDIA

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