Coach

Steven Fritsch


Steven grew up in a small town called Brighton, IL with 6 siblings (3 brothers and 3 sisters). He started lifting weights in high school at Southwestern High for football at age 14 and played basketball and baseball as well. At age 15, Steven discovered powerlifting while continuing to pursue football. He went on to break the school bench press record with a 315 lbs bench press at 17 years old as well as the total record (squat+bench+clean+trap bar deadlift).  At the end of his senior year football season, Steven was awarded All-Area and All-Conference honors at Defensive Back, and went on to play Division II football at McKendree University in Lebanon, IL. 

At McKendree, he played running back and moved to linebacker his sophomore year. After two seasons with the Bearcats, Steven medically retired at the end of his sophomore season due to concussions, though also sustaining a shoulder labrum tear that required surgical repair. The following semester, he was the first member of the very first intercollegiate varsity powerlifting program in the nation at McKendree, serving as the Team Captain in his two years with the program.  He finished his Junior year season at Nationals placing 11th in the country in the 105kg weight class. He continued to compete in his senior year, setting records in all lifts: the squat, bench, deadlift, and total across three states. He ended his senior powerlifting season placing 4th in the country at USAPL Collegiate Nationals. Steven graduated from McKendree University in 2016 with a degree in Leadership in Sport and Exercise Science.

Immediately after graduating from college, Steven went to work as a personal trainer at The Lab Gym in St. Louis, MO. At the Lab, he took up Olympic weightlifting and started competing in that sport as well as powerlifting, while also serving a coach for the Team Lab Power Team. He won the Best Lifter Award at the 2018 USA Powerlifting River’s Edge Meet with a 561 lbs squat, 374 lbs bench, and 601 lbs deadlift at 198 lbs bodyweight, while continuing to train clients with goals ranging from weight loss to pain management to strength.

In July 2018, Steven moved to Chicago, IL to begin working with EFT Sports Performance as a Sports Performance Coach and Active Rehab Clinics as a Rehab Tech, running the aquatic rehab program. In Chicago is also where he started competing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu at Gracie Barra Libertyville under Jamil Fakhoury. Steven's most recent Jiu-Jitsu accomplishment was taking gold at the 2019 International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation Spring Chicago Open and getting promoted to blue belt. 

In July 2019, Steven was introduced to Jesse O’Brien through a mutual friend. Upon visiting Central Athlete, Steven wanted to align himself with the Central Athlete community as he saw firsthand the amazing work being done. Steven loves to help individuals discover their true strengths, and manifest them in and out of the gym. He uses his experience and his ability to break down movements to assess weaknesses and prescribe the best plan of action for each individual. 

Best lifts:

  • Squat - 605 lbs raw (knee sleeves), 650 lbs equipped (briefs) 
  • Bench - 385 lbs
  • Deadlift - 620 lbs conventional, 650 lbs sumo
  • Snatch - 295 lbs
  • Clean - 374 lbs
  • Clean and Jerk - 352 lbs
  • Fastest Jiu-Jitsu match - 18 seconds winning via cross collar choke.
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