Functional Athletics

235 St. Georges Avenue, North Vancouver   |   (604) 781-7634    |   info@functionalathletics.ca

Meet the Team

CERTIFIED TRAINERS, COACHES, AND YOGIS.

Coach & Co-Founder

Sean Kearney

Sean is a certified personal trainer, lifelong athlete, long-time North Shore resident, and co-founder of Functional Athletics Inc.

Sean spent several years with a large multi-location fitness company, where he had a loyal client following. While he learned a lot, he struggled with the pressure to sell unnecessary training packages and nutritional supplements to clients, who weren’t getting a proper return on their investment. When looking for alternatives, he discovered that high-intensity workouts using functional movements in a fun, community environment, a training approach known as CrossFit, was more effective for his clients. He subsequently founded a business based on a combination of CrossFit, high-intensity interval workouts on indoor rowers, and bodyweight exercises, all in a social and lively environment.

Certifications & Specialties

Coach & Co-Founder

Michael Kearney

Michael is a certified personal trainer and long-time North Shore resident.
Michael’s competitive sports background includes soccer, gymnastics, track and field, rugby, muay thai kickboxing and alpine skiing. From 2000 to 2007, ski racing dominated Michael’s athletic activity. He spent 140 days per year on snow, travelled extensively, and competed in regional, national, and international competitions

Michael’s passion for health, fitness, and competition continues. In 2011 he became a CrossFit practitioner. As a constant source of exercise advice for friends and family, Michael knew he could create a fun, effective way for others to train and prepare for competitions, events, or just the physical stresses of everyday life. In 2014 he co-founded Functional Athletics.

To stay in shape, Michael is always pushing his limits and finding ways to improve so he can continue to be competitive. In 2014 Michael began putting his fitness to the test in CrossFit competitions locally and abroad. Outside of the gym Michael is always going on adventures along with his wife and son. 

In his coaching, Michael focuses on the individual, helping them find their motivation and drawing up a program to specifically fit their needs and goals.

Certifications & Specialties

CrossFit Kids Coach and Yoga/Mobility Instructor

Sarah Kearney

Sarah is a certified coach in multiple fitness disciplines: CrossFit, yoga; gymnastics; trampoline; Taekwondo.

A resident of West Vancouver, Sarah is a lifelong athlete and competitor. She competed locally, provincially and nationally in both gymnastics and Taekwondo. Sarah holds black belts in Taekwondo and mixed martial arts. She was three time provincial Taekwondo champion and represented BC at the Canadian Nationals. In addition, Sarah coached martial arts for 4 years.

Sarah coached gymnastics for 12 years at a local North Vancouver club, Flicka Gymnastics.

Yoga has always been part of Sarah’s personal training regime. It has helped her relax, focus, become more flexible and stronger. Sarah earned her 250 hour yoga certification with a view to working with her brothers at Functional Athletics. Her programming compliments the “whole-body, healthy lifestyle” approach to fitness embraced by her brothers.

Sarah promotes confidence in her students by creating a safe, relaxed environment and by offering modifications in postures to ensure each individual gets the most out of their practice.

Sarah also leads the acclaimed Functional Athletics CrossFit kids program. She facilitates a lifelong foundation of physical literacy, kids learn to move powerfully, bend effortlessly, balance precisely, coordinate eyes, hands and feet, exhale negativity, inhale fun and self-confidence.

 

Certifications & Specialties

COACH

Diego F Dias

Diego is a Kinesiologist graduated from Capilano University who holds multiple certifications such as Olympic Weightlifting, Powerlifting and CrossFit. He started his journey as a CrossFit trainer in Brazil, but truly found himself in Olympic Weightlifting.

Diego’s methodology is based on Weightlifting techniques and it works as a boosting tool for people seeking to improve their quality of life and for athletes with different sports backgrounds.

Diego’s passion about strength, body movement and recovery have driven him to become a High Performance Coach who works tirelessly to make his clients reach the best version of themselves. 

Certifications & Specialties

COACH

Melissa Babra

Melissa is a certified NCCP Competition Introduction Weightlifting coach. 

Melissa started her weightlifting career in Hamilton, Ontario in 2015 where she has competed in numerous sanctioned competitions with the Ontario Weightlifting Association (OWA). Upon moving to the North Shore in 2018, she continued to actively participate as both an athlete and technical official with the BC Weightlifting Association (BCWA), having attended BC’s provincials 2x as a competitor. 

Melissa is the head coach of the FA Weightlifting Club. She works with all levels of athletes, from first-timers to competitive weightlifters. She enjoys helping others realize their potential and obtain their goals in the sport.  

Outside of the gym, Melissa works full-time in Clinical Trials, and hikes and camps regularly anywhere between Vancouver Island to the Rockies. 

Certifications & Specialties

COACH

Adam Romanick

Adam is a Certified CrossFit coach with a passion for all things fitness. He currently works as the High Performance Program Coordinator at the Richmond Oval with a variety of Olympic and aspiring Olympic level athletes. Adam enjoys connecting with people, building lasting relationships and helping people achieve their goals.

Born and raised on the North Shore, Adam participated in a variety of sports growing up from soccer to Muay Thai Kickboxing before eventually finding his home in CrossFit. Since that time, Adam has participated in 4 CrossFit Opens, The Canwest Games as a team and the Fraser Valley Throwdown as an individual athlete among other competitions.

 When not in the gym or at work, Adam enjoys hiking, biking, travelling and enjoying everything the North Shore has to offer. As a CrossFit coach, Adam enjoys being creative with his classes and is best known for his spicy Saturday row classes.

Certifications & Specialties

COACH

Jorge Fernandez Mena

Jorge first came to Vancouver in May 2017. He loved it, and eight months later, he and his wife returned with an intention to never leave. Jorge’s family includes two daughters, one born in Mexico and one born in Canada 🙂

Jorge is a certified CrossFit coach and Nutritionist, and also holds certifications in Bodybuilding and Olympic Lifting.

Jorge’s sporting career began as a young 5 year old when his parents enrolled him in Tae Kwon Do. He obtained his black belt at 10 years old, and competed at an international level. Over the years Jorge also excelled in other sports. He was captain of a varsity Basketball team and part of the regional track and field team, where his speciality was the 100m dash, achieving a personal best of 10.80 seconds.

A North shore resident and full time coach, Jorge is also trying to improve his diaper changing skills. Jorge, his wife and baby daughter, live within walking distance of Functional Athletics.

 

Certifications & Specialties

COACH

Sarah Picard

Sarah is a certified CrossFit coach, a fitness enthusiast, a full-time Elementary school teacher, and a mom of two.  

Sarah was born and raised on the Northshore.  Sarah’s first athletic passion was found in dancing, which she pursued from the age of 3 to 17, in a variety of disciplines from ballet to competitive jazz to tap.  After entering university, she discovered a love of the outdoors and developed a passion for rock climbing, pairing it with marathon running. 

In 2010 Sarah discovered CrossFit when it emerged on the fitness scene as a revolutionary new approach to strength and conditioning.  After the very first class, she was bit hard by the CrossFit bug and has never looked back.  What she loves most about CrossFit is the amazing community it builds.  She also appreciates how it is a form of fitness that emphasizes building strength and skills over aesthetics.  She loves how she can focus on the numbers she can weightlift rather than the numbers on the scale!  

Shortly after the birth of her second child, Sarah joined Functional Athletics, taking advantage of the FA child-minding service while training.  You can find Sarah at FA six days a week, coaching or training; it truly is her home away from home!    


Certifications & Specialties

COACH

Marlon DeGagne

Marlon is a Certified CrossFit Coach, competitive athlete, and licensed electrician.

Originally from Kenora, Ont, Marlon’s athletic career started at a young age with competitive hockey, then court sports and soccer. He excelled in volleyball, winning provincials with his high school team in back-to-back years, playing varsity with Algonquin college, and then playing in the highest tier of men’s volleyball in the Ottawa area.

Marlon, with persuading from Nadine, tried his first CrossFit class at Functional Athletics. He was hooked after the one class and the 2 weeks of recovery. Fast forward a few years, multiple competitions, 1000s of reps and rips, and his Level 1 CrossFit coaching certification, and you have Marlon 2.0. Marlon plans on getting all his CrossFit coaching certifications, continue competing and coaching this amazing sport for as long as his body will let him.    


Certifications & Specialties

Coach

Olena Kodak

Olena is a certified personal trainer, group fitness instructor, and avid yellow-gatorade drinker. She is passionate about everything that is health and fitness, and also works alongside Married to My Macros to keep her nutrition in check (yes, that includes those handfuls of fuzzy peaches she downs mid workout to keep her energy up and ready to crush WODs). 

Olena’s love for health and fitness comes from a background of competitive sports as a kid, playing soccer, basketball, and most notably, volleyball growing up, but also derives from her 5+ year battle with anorexia. Since then Olena has learned how to properly fuel herself for day to day training, competition, and for life. As both an athlete and a coach she wants to help teach others the importance of nutrition, and to not shy away from food especially when it’s paired with high intensity training and performance based goals.

This past year Olena competed in the CanWest 2022 games, which she credits her coach and FA co-founder Michael Kearney for. In 2020 Olena tried to qualify but did not make the cut off, placing 96th in the qualifying round. This time around, Olena qualified 25th and placed 16th at the Games, proudly rocking her FA crop top. She plans to continue to sign up for live competitions, and working towards her goals of competing RX. 


Certifications & Specialties

COACH

Melissa Kasper

Mel is a certified CrossFit coach and has competed in several realms of sports competitions. Her enthusiasm is in helping members to lift heavy, move fast, and staying injury free so they can achieve their goals. She enjoys figuring out ways to optimize technique around individual biomechanics, helping athletes feel comfortable and confident in training, and will happily chat about sports science during class.

Mel’s fitness journey started at Functional Athletics under Sean and Mike Kearney. She trialed a free class on the suggestion of her favourite ex roommate, not knowing what she was in for. (Thanks Darian) Mel attended her first CrossFit class where she couldn’t do a single from-the-knees push up. Sean and Mike scaled the workout, and adjusted things to her level. She appreciated Mike and Sean’s supportive environment and effective programming, achieving that push up a few months later, followed by the first pull up, then eventually a legless rope climb. Knowing what it was like to be vulnerable in a new scenario she tries to create a welcoming atmosphere that allows new members to feel safe and supported (as well as pushed 😉 ).

She has since participated in various sports events including CrossFit, the Gran Fondo, and weightlifting competitions. She is currently a National Level Powerlifter (on second reserve to represent Canada in the 2022 Commonwealth Games) and is a community manager for the powerlifting community of RTS, home to several world record holders. She enjoys sports photography, video games, marvel movies, and good coffee. While running will always be her nemesis, she can probably carry you and your dog up a mountain. 


Certifications & Specialties

COACH

Afeef Khanzada

Afeef is a certified coach and human potential enthusiast. 


His journey through body dysmorphia, weight loss and substance addiction over the last decade lead him to consistently find and apply fitness and other wellness modalities into his life. He loves learning and putting education into practice.


He’s explored many approaches to health and fitness, spent time studying unique techniques, travelling and teaching in various fields. His technical understanding extends beyond the gym and strength training, to areas such as martial arts, circus acrobatics, yoga, acroyoga, movement flow yoga, and breathwork.


Afeef incorporates important breathwork techniques in his teaching as he guides clients to improvements in their fitness and nervous system regulation.


In terms of community service, Afeef volunteers in support of young men and former inmates, providing the vulnerable with crucial life skills, emotional regulation and essential resources in collaboration with halfway houses throughout the lower mainland.


Afeef spends most of his work-time coaching at Functional Athletics, or hosting hot-cold therapy treatments at Tality Wellness Spa, and in his down-time getting up to shenanigans with his friends and partner. 

Certifications & Specialties