Cycling elements: Bike shop’s new owner has big plans

By Katie Demeria

WINCHESTER — Josh Lewis has spent more than four years working with Element Sports full time, and even longer as a part-time employee. Now he has purchased the business and has big plans in mind.

Lewis purchased the bicycle shop from former owner John Todd on Aug. 15. The store had a grand reopening Aug. 16 to celebrate its new ownership and change of location — the 2009 S. Loudoun St. store was previously located on Pleasant Valley Road.

The business has been in the Winchester area for several years, becoming Element Sports when Todd purchased the Winchester Bike Center in 1996. It moved to its current location in December 2013.

Lewis has already made some changes since taking over. He redesigned the store to create more space to display product on the walls.

But most of his big changes will be taking place in the next several months.

“Right now the upstairs is used as office space, but I want to redesign it to make it a training and fitness room, with spin bikes,” Lewis said.

And in October he said he hopes to start offering professional bike fittings, soon after becoming certified.

“Some people have various back and leg issues,” he said. “This costs extra money and takes extra time, but it’s a more comprehensive fitting and it’s worth it to some people.”

Lewis plans to become a more substantial contender in Winchester’s fitness world in general. He will start offering spin classes in the winter, bringing in trainers, as well.

Element Sports has a solid amount of competition in the area. Winchester supports four other bike and multi-sport shops. But Lewis said his shop presents a more versatile supply, offering products for roller skating, skateboarding, competitive swimming and boating.

Most of their business, though, comes from selling and repairing bicycles. One thing most other shops do not do, Lewis said, is repair any style of bike.

“We’ll work on any bike, no matter how cheap,” he said. “If that’s all they can afford, we won’t turn them away.”

The shop caters to everyone, though their most frequent customer is the average rider, who Lewis described as a “weekend warrior.”

They also offer $100 worth of services for each bike sold, regardless of the model.

His plans to expand are not likely to end within the next few months, either. He said he hopes to start working in personal training and coaching, branching into guided tours, as well.

“Biking is very good for cardiovascular health and burning calories,” he said. “It can be as relaxing or as intense as you want it to be.”

Many parents frequent the shop, as well, seeking bikes that they can use while riding with their kids. It is a great family bonding activity, Lewis said.

“There are a lot of good reasons to get out, and especially to get out on a bike,” he said.

To find out more about Element Sports, visit http://www.elementsport.com. The business also frequently posts deals on Facebook at http://tiny.cc/0msmlx.

Contact staff writer Katie Demeria at 540-465-5137 ext. 155, or kdemeria@nvdaily.com