Claflin student encourages others to PUT THEIR HEALTH FIRST

By: Tulleesha Burbage
Mar 01, 2015

Obesity has become such a problem for college students. Between studying, stressing out and the pressure of college, college students turn to eating unhealthy foods to cope. College students overindulge at the cafe, pizza hut, chinese food, the pit and local restaurants. Unhealthy ingredients can develop health problems in the future. It starts right here and now! Get off of this train of an unhealthy lifestyle and start a new healthy lifestyle. It starts with you, a bottle of water, determination, consistency and making smarter and healthy food choices on and off campus. Having a positive team that can encourage you along the way will be a great help! I have just the right woman that can help you get closer to your goal.

Khadijah Percell, a Claflin University student began her journey to helping others achieve their fitness goals about 2 years ago. 
“Before then, I was always into fitness but it was just for myself mainly, as an outlet to get rid of my frustrations in a healthy way. It is not easy raising two boys and caring for a grandmother who's battling with cancer, while trying to get an education at the same time, however fitness has made this possible for me,” Percell said.

Percell before and after weightloss

Watching her grandmother fight cancer is what motivated Percell to help others. Her grandmother always said, “I wish I would have taken better care of myself when I was younger". Percell took that message and ran with it, trying to influence as many young adults as she could. She started training just one girl, then, five. Now, Percell assists 20 ladies and gentlemen with living a healthier lifestyle. Percell teaches the students about nutrition as well. She simply enjoys doing what she does free of charge. “I just want every young person I encounter to have a chance my grandmother always wished for,” Percell said.

She has a myriad of success stories from students at Claflin University. Percell’s workout consists of working on the abs, legs, arms and buttocks.  She assists you one-on-one. Before and after every work out, Percell likes for everyone to join hands and pray. She takes before and after pictures so students can see their progress. It’s more than a workout. It is more than movement. The students are developing a family. They talk to each other, encourage each other and lose the weight together. Students of all shapes and sizes come out to be a part of this movement. Not only does she give students a good workout, she teaches students how to eat healthy and make better choices. She gives them examples of food charts and workouts that they can do at home if they are unable to make it to the gym. Percell also gives tips and advice. She gives students the encouragement to continue. At the beginning of their process, she informs students that the task before them is not easy, but to never give up no matter what obstacles they are faced with.  If you want something, you will work for it and she is here to help. Percell is building self-esteem and confidence in these students. Every Monday-Friday, she is located at State’s track at 8am-8:50am. If weather conditions are inclement, she moves the workout to Claflin University’s gym, JTK. 

“Kay theBody Movement is open to all. She has her own website: You can also follow the movement on Instagram @kaytheboday. Khadijah Percell wants everyone to remember to always put your health first. 

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