8 Eastman Street Cranford NJ 07016...908-272-7400

KOA Coaches

  Josh Mandel

When my hockey career was over, the thought of working a 9-5 just didn't work for me. I decided to take a chance and start my own personal training company. That was July 2004. Since fitness and nutrition were a passion of mine, I felt that I had the best of both worlds. I was able to do something I love and help people at the same time. I still wanted to help more people and the easiest way to affect more people in a positive way was to do group sessions.

We started our boot camp in 2007. The group dynamic was awesome right from the start. Everyone would feed off of each other's energy. Originally, we were in local parks doing mostly bodyweight exercises and sprints. We then moved to a local tennis center. It was great but we were still missing something. When Rachael and I bought our house, I began training everyone out of our gym/garage. I implemented CrossFit workouts and found the missing piece. Results happened so much faster. Everyone was getting stronger, leaner and more fit. The gratification of seeing your members improve is amazing. It's no surprise that we quickly grew out of our garage space.

Certifications:
CrossFit Level 1 Coach
CrossFit Movement and Mobility Certified
CrossFit Kids Certified
USA Weightlifting Level 1 Sports Performance Coach
Attended Wilkes Weightlifting Seminar
Certified Personal Trainer
Certified Fitness Nutrition Coach
Certified Speed, Agility, Quickness Trainer
CPR Certified
Former Professional Hockey Player
4 Time National Champion at Penn State
4 Time 1st Team All-American
2 Time Member Team USA 2001, 2003

 

  John Badala

 

After finishing what I thought was my athletic career, I graduated from high school and off to college I went. I had no plan on participating in college sports. None what so ever. One day I saw a guy who I use to compete with in shot put. He asked me if I was going to throw for the track team and he was shocked when I said no. He told me to give it a second thought and I did. The next day I went to go talk to the coach with no intentions on joining the team. But I did and it was one of the best decisions I ever made. My coach (Ryan Hebron) sculpted me into who I am today. He taught me how to workout, he taught me how to never give up, he taught me how to be the best athlete i could be. All I had to do was listen. Because of him I broke three school records and become an NJAC champ.

After my junior year, the team I was a part of for three years got cut at my the school. It brought tears to my eyes when I found out. My coach had to look for a new job. I started a routine workout I got from Jay Cutler. Not the QB but the body builder. He was my coaches idol. If my coach believed in him then I did.

Now let's fast forward two years. Its July 2012 and I am sick of this same workout I have been doing for the last 2 years. I start looking online, in magazines and asking people what I can try next. That's when I found CrossFit. I had some friends that went to CrossFit KOA so I said why not try it out. After my first workout I fell in love! It was like I was back in college working out with my coach again! It was me against the weights. That is what convinced me that this had to become my career. It was something I loved to do. Something I have become so passionate about. I couldn't have picked a better gym. This gym is a family and I look forward to becoming more and more a part of that family!

Certifications: 
Crossfit level 1 certification

 

 

  Joe Ortiz

So I stumbled upon CrossFit in 2010. As a former college football player I had grown tired of my workout routine and was looking for something new. I had always thought I was in pretty good shape. I weighed in somewhere around 230 pounds, could bench press over 300 pounds and run an 8 minute mile. This is what I thought was being in good shape. Friends of mine enticed me to run a Tough Mudder race with them. After Tough Mudder it was fairly clear that I was in awful shape. About half way through I literally felt like I was going to die. It was at this point that I made the firm decision to find a CrossFit, sign up and give it a go.

I’ll never forget my first week. I couldn’t do consecutive burpees. Yes, you read that right. I literally couldn’t do two burpees in a row. That was on top of essentially not being able to do anything Rx. ANYTHING!  But I quickly learned that it wasn’t really important to do Rx but more important to push yourself outside of your comfort zone and do something you’ve never done before. So here I am, basically beating myself into submission every class with a bunch of strangers cheering me on. Instantly I’m hooked!  The sense of camaraderie, teamwork and family was something I was certain I would never find again after football ended. Then CrossFit happened to me, and it was back. You always here former athletes talk about how they will miss the locker room or camaraderie and how it’s irreplaceable. For me, CrossFit has brought that back into my life.

I took my love for CrossFit a step further and became CrossFit Level 1 certified. The joy of coaching is pretty awesome. I enjoy the feeling of people coming in and saying, “I’ll never climb that rope”. Then one day.......BOOM! First rope climb. I’m pumped for them. And here I am today, coaching at KOA and I couldn’t be happier!