New York University's independent student newspaper, established in 1973.

Washington Square News

New York University's independent student newspaper, established in 1973.

Washington Square News

New York University's independent student newspaper, established in 1973.

Washington Square News

In the Huddle: Tisch sophomore Andy Cabindol prepares for powerlifting championships

The NYU sophomore spoke to WSN about his powerlifting journey as a student-athlete before the first-ever FISU World University Powerlifting Championships.
(Courtesy of Andy Cabindol)

In July, Tisch sophomore Andy Cabindol will represent the U.S. and NYU in the International University Sports Federation’s World University Powerlifting Championship in Tartu, Estonia. The 19-year-old will compete in the 66-kg weight class of the championships as one of only 32 representatives from the United States — and one of two from New York universities.

In an interview with WSN, Cabindol spoke about his experience powerlifting and balancing his competitive career with academics.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity. 

WSN: How did your powerlifting journey start?

Cabindol: I started going to the gym five years ago. I played zero sports because I wasn’t that coordinated, and I’m 5 feet 4 inches. In a lot of sports, height is an advantage, but with powerlifting, most of the time, being shorter is more of an advantage. My first competition was in May 2022, right after I graduated high school, and I placed fourth. 

WSN: What was your family’s reaction when you started powerlifting? 

Cabindol: They first saw it as just me just going to the gym, and then after my first competition, I brought back home a medal — they actually didn’t know that I was competing. I showed them videos, and my family’s first-generation immigrants, so the first thing they said was, ‘Oh my gosh, you’re going to break your back.’ Not gonna lie, I understand their concern. I know they’re only saying this out of love. 

WSN: What does a typical day for you look like?

Cabindol: I train in the mornings, usually around 7 a.m. People complain about their 8 a.m. classes, I complain about going to the gym. It’s a love-hate relationship. I go to the gym in the morning, and I’m there for usually two hours. I’m doing whatever my coach tells me to do. It’s either a main movement, which is squat, bench or deadlift, or I would be doing accessory movements, which are just machines and cable stuff. After that I go to class. Usually I end the day around 5 p.m.

His coach, Nicholas Lin, is a recent CAS alum and was co-founder and president of NYU Barbell, the university’s powerlifting club. Lin encouraged Cabindol to join the club and, after his first collegiate meet in December 2022, Lin took over his training. 

WSN: What are some challenges you’ve faced? 

Cabindol: I would definitely say the social life because I love eating. I love going out to restaurants. Nutrition is big in powerlifting, and I have to constantly track my calories. In the past two months, especially, I’ve had to say no to a lot of friends because they want to go eat. It’s also difficult in between classes. We have dining halls but they don’t accurately list nutrition info, so I bring my food scale around.

WSN: What are your hopes for this upcoming academic year?

Cabindol: I would like to get official Student Activities Board recognition for NYU Barbell. We’ve applied twice now, and they rejected us both times. There’s a lot of people that are interested in powerlifting but don’t know where to get started, and I feel like our club can help. 

Contact Sydney Barragan at [email protected].

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About the Contributor
Sydney Barragan
Sydney Barragan, Sports Editor
Sydney Barragan is a senior majoring in Journalism and Public Policy. She spends her free time reading, rewatching the same TV shows and talking about the Dodgers. Find her on Instagram @sydneybarragan.

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