Andrew Cabindol: Powerlifter, designer, beatboxer

He is slated to compete with Team USA in a powerlifting championship in Estonia in July. Courtesy of Andrew Cabindol

By Cristina DC Pastor

If Andrew Cabindol were an image, he would be a three-dimensional hologram, juggling his most intense passions: powerlifting, creative design and music.

He recently announced he was competing in the first-ever FISU University World Championship Powerlifting competition to be held July 23-27, 2024 in Tartu, Estonia as a representative of Team USA. One peels the layers of his persona and finds that competitive sports is only one of many abilities.

“I recently competed in the Powerlifting America University Nationals in Reno, Nevada in the men’s 66kg weight class and earned second place and an unofficial FISU powerlifting world bench press record of 325 lbs, and a total of 1267 lbs. This qualified me to compete in Estonia,” he told The FilAm.

The 20-year-old’s  journey embodies the fusion of artistry and athleticism. Born in Chicago, Illinois, to parents who are both computer engineers, Cabindol initially felt the weight of familial expectations pushing him towards technical fields. However, his trajectory veered dramatically as he discovered his passion for creative arts and sports.

As a “creative technologist,” he has been working with companies designing their logos and brands, doing photography and videos and working on corporate campaigns and projects that deliver results.

“I have been working with CEOs, PR specialists, and social media managers of leading agencies for over five years,” he said in his website “My work has won awards from valued corporations across the nation.”

Music, particularly a cappella singing, also holds a special place in Cabindol’s array of interests. A member of NYU Vocollision, a premier a cappella group at New York University, he contributes as the vocal percussionist or beatboxer. This role came unexpectedly; Cabindol used to beatbox for fun with his cousin. On a whim, he auditioned for the group upon his arrival at NYU and was accepted. His talent for beatboxing has since been recognized with two “Outstanding Vocal Percussionist” awards in the International Championship of Collegiate A Cappella competitions.

A ‘creative technologist,’ Cabindol designs brands and campaigns for companies. Photo:

Powerlifting, design work, and a cappella are no small feats for Cabindol. They require immense energy, focus, and above all, sacrifice. Due to his dedication to these diverse disciplines, Cabindol has had to make significant lifestyle adjustments, notably forgoing many social activities.

“Parties and dining out became rare occasions,” he said. “They’re incompatible with the strict sleeping and eating regimen that powerlifting demands.”

Cabindol is currently a Bachelor of Fine Arts sophomore at NYU majoring in Interactive Media Arts. He was in the Dean’s List of the Tisch School of the Arts in 2023. Two years ago, he just graduated from Harry D. Jacobs High School Algonquin, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago.

Cabindol grew up in a home where Filipino traditions hold sway. With an older brother and a younger sister, family life is vibrant. Eating together as a family is important with yummy dishes like Sisig being his favorite.

His parents, both computer engineers who graduated in the Philippines, brought a technical influence into the home. This environment naturally nudged Cabindol toward a similar path. Initially, he pursued engineering but later found his true calling in a field that blends technology with creativity.

Cabindol’s parents, being first-generation immigrants from the Philippines, have never truly encouraged him to commit to a sport during his primary school years. After Cabindol competed in his first powerlifting competition in May 2022 — unbeknownst to his parents — and came back home with a medal, “They were just as shocked as much as they were worried,”  he said.

This unexpected success served as a turning point. Witnessing their son’s passion and commitment to powerlifting transformed their worry into support.

“Gradually, they became my biggest fans,” he said.

They started by watching his competitions through online livestreams, a modern way for them to connect with his achievements. Their support didn’t stop there; they also began sharing his competition videos with relatives, spreading the news of his success within the community.

Cabindol’s story highlights the journey of a family coming to understand and celebrate their son’s dedication to a diverse set of interests and how he has excelled in many of them.

Leave a Reply