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Team of Expert Coaches

Armor coaches are dedicated to helping you safely and effectively accomplish your goals in an engaging environment. All of our coaches have several years experience participating in CrossFit and coaching others. Each coach has completed an extensive internship designed to take full advantage of the experience and knowledge of our in-house Doctor of Physical Therapy, Zach Rynders.

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Owner + Coach

Zach Rynders, DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy
CrossFit Level 3 Trainer
The Ready State Movement and Mobility Coach (formerly known as Mobility WOD)
USAW Level 1 Trainer

When I started college to become a physical therapist I had no plans of coaching. However, that quickly changed when I realized how much impact a coach could have on a client’s life. Being surrounded by some of the best and brightest clinicians, coaches, and researchers granted me the opportunity to see the positive impact an expert therapist and coach can have. I realized if I really want to make a difference I needed to gain as much experience as possible and never stop learning. I began coaching CrossFit and weightlifting in 2011 and started physical therapy school at the same time. I did not feel qualified to be in charge of somebody else’s health and fitness until I had 5+ years of CrossFit experience, competed as a national-level Olympic weightlifter, played a division 1 college sport, and had a degree in kinesiology (human movement). I still considered myself a white belt, but knew I was ready to start coaching some classes. My passion for coaching and training others grew from there. I found blending the skillset of a physical therapist and a coach provided me with the unique opportunity to teach others how to live happier and healthier lives. Helping others is easily the most rewarding thing I can do. Through education and experience, I have provided myself with the tools to do exactly that. I received my Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree from The University of Puget Sound. During my time in undergraduate and graduate school I conducted and published research on movement evaluation and injury risk assessment, exercise psychophysiology, and neuroscience. Understanding how the body moves and functions, I am able to use movement as a diagnostic tool to significantly improve performance, prevent injuries, and help individuals recover from pre-existing injuries. I diligently work with all clients on an individual basis to provide a safe and effective training regimen that is tailored to each person’s current fitness levels and goals.

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Manager + Coach

Joe Stewart

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer

I started CrossFit because lifting at a gym and running became stagnant and boring, and I wanted to be challenged. I became a coach because I love teaching and helping other people achieve success.


Jess Kimball

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer

I was always an active kid, participated in sports and grew up on a farm, helping in the fields hauling hay bales or moving lumber. I was introduced to crossfit by a friend that knew I enjoyed physical fitness and intensity. After my first class I was hooked. On fitness, of course, but also showing up everyday to a community that encouraged you to do things you never thought your body could do. After years of participating in crossfit and learning so much about the body and the importance of functional fitness and health, I was inspired to share with everyone the same passion I found in crossfit years ago. I wanted to be able to help people achieve what they never imagined they could, and learn the importance and effects of moving every day has on your body in such a positive way. And in the same way I did, in a fun, energetic and encouraging community of like minded people.

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Paul Cretella

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer

After leaving the army, where a certain level of fitness was mandatory, I just kind of kept going. Early on, I would run and do some lightweight/bodyweight stuff. I started thinking, ``How could I get more out of this?`` Get stronger. Lift more. As I age, I see fitness as a buffer against the aging process, so I will keep going for as long as I can. You don’t stop because you get old, you get old because you stop. I was given the opportunity to become a CrossFit Level 1 Trainer through the fire department I work for. When I started training at the gym, the previous owner offered me the chance to coach. I found I enjoyed it and the rest is history.

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Jessica Gamble

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer

I was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska. My earliest memories include camping in the mountains and fishing for salmon bigger than myself. I grew up playing competitive soccer and showing horses. I planned to accept a scholarship to play soccer at a division one university, but I sustained a triad injury to my knee and was forced to change plans. I moved to Washington to attend college and accept a job training horses. I quickly met my husband, Jake, and he managed to convince me to stay in Washington. We now have three wonderful kids named Michelle, Zoey, and Caleb. Due to a severe hip injury after having kids, I was not able to continue to pursue my active lifestyle. My husband suggested I try a fitness program designed by a Doctor of Physical Therapy at Armor Athletics. I learned that I was able to increase strength while helping my body heal properly at the same time. I pursued coaching because I am passionate about helping others the same way the Armor team helped me. It is incredibly rewarding to watch people overcome personal obstacles, accomplish new goals, and have fun along the way!

Tacoma Crossfit Gym Armor Athletics
Location and Phone Number

5206 South Tacoma Way

Tacoma, WA 98409


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