Cassi Niemann


CA-95 copy.jpg

I’m a Starting Strength Coach, UCanRow2 Master Rowing Instructor and licensed architect. I love super dorky things and probably say the word “awesome” too much. But my goal is to live a happy and fun life, all the while helping others to do the same – whether it’s through the built environment or your own built body.

I started my athletic career as a gymnast at age 2 and retired from that sport at age 15. I went on to compete in track & field in high school and then switched to collegiate rowing at Georgia Tech. After graduating, I began both my coaching and my architectural career simultaneously. This led to a few years of personal inactivity and I eventually ended up deep into bootcamps, group fitness and then later, CrossFit.

After a disappointing neck injury, I found a strength coach and she introduced me to the world of strength training and powerlifting. It soon became apparent that this was what I needed to be doing and also that I must share it with the world.

I believe that finding the balance between architecture, strength and rowing allows me to grow in many different dimensions at once. I have discovered an abundance of overlaps between the spaces we build and the bodies that occupy them. I believe in the power of design and the endless benefits of well-thought out spaces. I also believe that strength training leads to healthier and happier people. Together, these lead to a more awesome life.

Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves, and so I chose to tell myself a different story from the one women are told. I decided I was safe. I was strong. I was brave. Fear begets fear. Power begets power.
— Cheryl Strayed, Wild


When I’m not coaching other people, I am competing as a USAPL Raw Powerlifter and am a member of the Virginia Boat Club as a masters rower. My best lifts are: 285 lb squat, 165 lb bench, 120 lb press and 358 lb deadlift. I've currently started dabbling in Strongman contests and plan to compete before the end of the year!