Coaching staff

Terrence is a CrossFit Level I Certified Trainer is a lifelong athlete who loves incorporating his two passions, fitness and health, to help others exceed their fitness goals. Growing up, Terrence competed in many sports, but it wasn’t until his junior year at St. Joseph’s Prep that he made a commitment to take swimming seriously, in and out of the water. Terrence’s grandfather signed him up for a membership to Greg Long’s Gym. Due to their wisdom, Terrence achieved great success in the pool, and attributes this success to the strength and conditioning program he received at Long’s Gym. His high school swimming accolades include Philadelphia Catholic League Champion, National Catholic Champion, Eastern Interscholastic Swimming Champion and NISCA All-American.

In his next stage, Terrence attended United States Naval Academy, where he was a 4 year Varsity Letter winner on Navy’s swim team. It was during this time when he was introduced to CrossFit workouts by Navy’s strength and conditioning coach. Finding new levels of strength, his collegiate accolades include current team record holder, current league record holder, Patriot League Champion, Eastern Interscholastic Swimming League Champion and NCAA Division I All-American.

While he saw great strength gains over his four years at Navy, it wasn’t until his need for rehabilitation that he finally understood the true value of CrossFit. In 2005, while stationed in San Diego, CA, Terrence underwent two micro discectomies on his L4-L5 vertebrae. During his treatment, he was fortunate enough to meet a Navy LT., who asked the young Ensign what he planned to do to rehabilitate his back. Terrence explained he would continue his normal workout routine and “healthy” eating. This LT, who had other ideas in mind, took Terrence on the “wet side” of the Naval Amphibious Base in Coronado, CA, where he introduced him to CrossFit. The rest, as they say, is history. After a short appearance in Corporate America, Terrence finally realized that he could no longer ignore his passion for CrossFit.
For the past five years, Terrence has been the Owner/Operator of CrossFit T1 in Willow Grove, PA. The T1 community has since grown to be a very tight-knit, driven and extremely positive community. Personally during this time, Terrence has acquired numerous CrossFit certifications, as well as qualified for the Mid-Atlantic Regional competition twice in 2012 and 2013.

Terrence’s CrossFit Certifications/Accolades Include:
– CrossFit Level 1 Instructor
– CrossFit Nutrition
– CrossFit Olympic Lifting
– CrossFit Kids
– CrossFit Movement and Mobility
– “Beast of the East” Winter Throwdown 2010 – Co-Champion
– Delaware Affiliate Cup Challenge: affiliate Champion, individual Co-Champion
– 2010 CrossFit Games Central-East Regional Affiliate Competitor
– 2012 Reebok CrossFit Games Mid-Atlantic Regional – Individual Competitor
– 2013 Reebok CrossFit Games Mid-Atlantic Regional – Individual Competitor

Josh is a CrossFit Level II trainer that has been participating in CrossFit since 2011 and draws his inspiration to coach from seeing others achieve their own goals every day.

As a living testament to the effective nature of CrossFit, Josh is the perfect example of how much CrossFit can impact the livelihood of those who commit to its program. CrossFit has aided Josh in transforming himself from once being morbidly obese to now being in the best shape of his life. He is living proof that any life aspirations, regardless how big or small, are achievable with the proper support and guidance.

A Huntingdon Valley local, Ally grew up playing and participating in an array of sports. She went on to play field hockey and lacrosse at Gettysburg College. She was first exposed to CrossFit by her mom who began training with Terrence before the T1 or University City gyms existed. After her mom forced her to try it, Ally was hooked! CrossFit proved to be a great way to prepare for both the field hockey and lacrosse seasons. It was also the perfect way to stay athletically minded and in shape after college. She loves to try new skills and movements, but above all she loves to have fun. She is currently in nursing school at Villanova University.

Jimmy is a Level 1 Trainer that has been practicing CrossFit since 2009. At that time, he was competing as a Division I swimmer at The College of William & Mary. Upon supplementing his practices with CrossFit workouts, Jimmy experienced strength gains that lead to major improvements in the pool, resulting in All-Conference accolades and the title of Captain his senior year.

While his day job requires a bit of travel, Jimmy has gained a lot of experience visiting various CrossFit gyms across the country, acquiring many positive elements from other gyms that have been incorporated into the UCity system. While this leads to a limited opportunity for coaching, his energy provided when he is within the gym greatly makes up for any lost time.

Most importantly, he provides a dancing prowess that other members of the staff, particularly those that are blood-related, seem to fall significantly short.

Jim is currently working as an assistant construction superintendent for L.F. Driscoll Company in Philadelphia, PA. He applies his interests of strength conditioning and range-of-motion to the daily construction ergonomics required to prevent injuries of his workforce. Jim rowed and played lacrosse at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, MA. After college, he wanted to find a competitive outlet to stay in shape and release the stresses of daily life before returning home from work each day. With a great passion for his new-found sport of CrossFit, Jim back-doored his way in becoming more involved at UCity. He currently supports UCity by running the open gym in the afternoon and overseeing the renovations being made to both the upper/lower gyms. Jim also has great hair. #24

Kate recently received her CrossFit level 1 certification after participating in CrossFit as an athlete since 2012.  Starting in a tiny gym in Ithaca, NY Kate began CrossFit to fill the competitive void left after finishing her Track and Field career at Cornell University where she ran the 200, 400, 4×400 and 4×100. As a self-proclaimed power athlete (nicknamed “Diesel” after her likeness to an 18-wheeler) Kate fit in happily amongst the CrossFit Community.

After graduating from undergrad in 2010, Kate took a year off her studies and spent her time coaching track and field at her hometown high school. However, after going back to school in 2011 to pursue a career as a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Kate put coaching on hold. After graduation in 2015, she completed a grueling year-long internship program before being accepted as a Dermatology Resident at the University of Pennsylvania. Now, with a little more down time, she is again pursuing her love of coaching and is excited to bring her positivity and spirit to her classes.

Paul Helms is a CrossFit Level 1 coach, Licensed Massage Therapist and Certified Personal Trainer specializing in injury recovery, pain management, and athletic performance. Hailing from Durham, NC, Paul received his bachelors of science in biology from Davidson College. During his time at Davidson, Paul rowed competitively for three years and served as Captain for three seasons. After college he started CrossFit to stay in shape. He found an amazing community among the athletes who loved dropping heavy weights and surviving brutal metcons.

After college Paul started working as a personal trainer and collecting prerequisite courses for Chiropractic College. During these years he specialized as a trainer for athletes discharged from physical therapy but still in pain. First Paul combined corrective exercises with smart strength training to bring athletes from rehab to sport. Later Paul enhanced his treatment skills by earning a License of Massage Therapy and becoming trained as a Certified Fascial Stretch Specialist to perform advanced manual rehabilitation techniques.

At CrossFit University City, Paul coaches CrossFit classes, as well as Durability classes for athletes designed to prevent injuries and increase athletic performance. As the resident injury fixer at the gym, his business, Helms Performance, serves the box’s members to keep them in top shape.

Brandon is a CrossFit Level I Certified trainer and current student at Drexel University.  He has been active in CrossFit since 2011 and although he has participated in many other sports throughout his youth, he has made CrossFit the foundation of his own personal health, fitness, and wellness.  He plans on continuing his education while becoming more competitive in the CrossFit community.  

Originally from Madison, Wisconsin, Brandon has traveled across the U.S. and eventually arrived in Philly in 2016.  After his very first day of a CrossFit introductory course, he was hooked and found as much personal growth mentally as he did physically through the many following years.  His inspiration to coach comes from his own very first coach who instilled in him the values of helping others achieve their goals, challenging them, supporting them, and guiding them to the path of their ideal self.  He started CrossFit from scratch and loves seeing others achieve their own accomplishments, big or small.  He has previously coached at CrossFit Manayunk and CrossFit Bala and is beyond excited to work with all of the fantastic athletes our gym has to offer.