By Julian Brenman ‘20, Editor-In-Chief 10-31-18
“Fitness leads to happiness, and happiness leads to fitness,” asserts Coach Sean Campbell, Friends’ Central’s new strength and conditioning trainer. Campbell, who joined the FCS community in September, has eight years of experience in the strength and conditioning field. He holds a bachelor’s degree in exercise science from West Chester University and received his certificate in strength and conditioning from the National Strength and Conditioning Association. His duties at FCS include overseeing the fitness room (located in the basement of the Shimada Athletic Center), providing advice to student-athletes, helping students who aren’t athletes maintain good physical health, and serving as a consultant to those who have questions about exercise in general. “It’s amazing. I actually feel like I’m making a difference. When I stick my hand into something new, it’s a really rewarding experience,” says the coach about his career.
Though Sean just came to Friends’ Central two months ago, he’s already developed a deep appreciation for his new student-athletes. He reflects, “Everybody here likes to work hard. Nobody comes down to the gym and shies away from anything. Anything I hand to somebody, they’re (sic) willing to attack it. As a coach, it makes it very easy to do my job. I really feel like I’m improving people’s lives.” Working with high school students hits close to home for Sean, as it was during his junior year at Upper Darby High School, which is practically down the road, that he developed his passion for strength and conditioning. He recalls, “In my junior year, I was lifting 320 lbs and lost 140 lbs. It was then that I fell in love with the entire idea of strength and conditioning.” While FCS is proud to have many a “muscle man” in our midst, Sean affirms that one needn’t be a bodybuilder to visit him in the fitness room: “I love training everybody. The gym is not just a place for athletes. It’s a safe place for everybody to learn and grow, both physically and mentally. You never know how much stress you can handle until you start adding stress in with the gym.” To those who may feel nervous or unsure if strength and conditioning is the right activity for them, Sean advises, “Come to the gym. You can’t get strong if you’re afraid.”
In addition to his work at Friends’ Central, Sean partners with swimmers, hockey players, and roller derby players to ensure they are fulfilling their strength and conditioning potential. A lifelong learner, Sean frequently writes articles on the topic of strength and conditioning, and is currently studying to obtain advanced certification in other areas of exercise science.
Sean, a native of Clifton Heights who enjoys playing the guitar and lifting weights himself, concludes the interview with the following powerful remarks: “If you want to be happy, you’ve got to be fit. If you want to be fit, come down and get happy! I’m excited to work with everybody, and I really hope everybody is excited to work with me.”