32 Reviews on “Byron Johnston, SSC”

Overall rating
  • Stefan

    Hands down the best coach in the world! He looks after his trainees, even when they’re not having a 1:1 meeting. He is very helpful and is always willing to answer questions. His philosophy is to create self-sufficient lifters by transferring his knowledge to his trainees. I would not have been this strong without him, both mentally and physically.

    1. Chris W

      Training with Byron was the best experience I’ve had with a strength coach. Byron was knowledgeable, diligent and easy to get on with. We spent a couple of hours correcting my form for the squat, deadlift and press 2.0, before briefly going through programming.

    2. Adam

      After following a Starting Strength linear progression and making some progress, I started to pick up injuries and lost confidence. I decided the only way I was going to allow myself to continue was if I got some professional coaching.

      Being from the UK, I realised Byron was my closest coach and although this meant a pretty substantial drive from Nottingham and back in the same day, I decided it was worth it considering all the good things I had heard. I was not disappointed!

      From first contact with Byron, everything was handled with professionalism. Having sent over videos of my lifts prior to the coaching session, Byron had already accumulated a list improvements before I had even set foot in the door. After going through each of the four main lifts, I was surprised at the number of errors I had been making, some of which would have been impossible for Byron to see, or communicate to me, had I not been there in person. During the session Byron filmed my lifts and made notes of things I need to work on, meaning I now have a record I can refer to at home.

      I now feel confident to progress with my training, and have a renewed sense of motivation. I’ll definitely be contacting Byron in the near future for further guidance and support.

  • Jonathon Hunter Hill

    I trained with Byron while I was recovering from having a bad back. Because of my poor form, I’d injured my back. Byron helped me to deadlift and squat without injuring myself, improving my form dramatically. Over time, my back pain went away. Thanks Byron!

  • Chris

    I started training with Byron to further my strength and conditioning for the mountain bike racing events I compete in. Byron helped me to review and better my technique for lifting. Byron also helped with scheduling my training, and my training around races and events. Amazing coach!

  • Adam Beedie

    Byron is an amazing coach for all our family.

    My wife and I wanted to begin a journey into strength training having read about healthy ageing but knew nothing about lifting weights. Both of us have participated in sports throughout our lives but focused on cardio fitness so knew nothing about strength training.

    Byron has opened our eyes to a new world of fitness and the benefits of strength training. We have found the journey enjoyable and have learned so much from Byron on the way
    He has an passion that is infectious as he encourages you along each step of the way. The results are incredible and have convinced all of us that this is a lifelong pursuit.

    Our teenage sons have become strength training converts and love the simplicity of the Starting Strength ethos. They can do their workouts and see massive benefits without spending hours in the gym like a lot of their friends. More importantly, the benefits they have seen in their other sports have shown them the importance of having the strength foundation.

    Byron connected with each of us in an engaging way and kept all of us motivated and engaged. He has a huge knowledge base but pitches it at the level of the client. He’s always available to help or to add and doesn’t limit his training to the weight room…he’s a real life coach who has changed our family dynamic for the better.

    Thanks Byron

    1. Ruth Carpenter

      What a great coach Byron is! Strength training with him has really opened my eyes to what an effective workout lifting weights is, particularly in midlife.

      As a 50 year old, busy Mum of three, I was often tired and lacked strength and stamina. I wanted to reverse that, lose some weight, build muscle and work towards being fit and strong going forward.

      Byron’s patience, personality and specific knowledge of the subject have set me well on the way to achieving those goals. After just three months I can really see the results both in the progression of the weights I am lifting and in the positive changes in my body.

      He sets a specific programme just for you, assessing your goals and nutritional needs, and along the way teaches you to be able to lift safely & effectively on your own. I can’t wait to see how I progress further. I would recommend him highly, thanks Byron!

  • MaryAnne Wiseman

    I just signed up with Byron a couple weeks ago, and he’s been so awesome helping me with so many aspects of my training and progression. His attention to detail and precision is exactly what I need. He has an enormous amount of knowledge, and one can see his passion for his clients’ success. It’s clear that he is also on his own path of health utilizing the SS method, which is a great testament to everything it stands for. I’m so thrilled that I found him, and I am excited to work with him in my process to transforming my strength, health, and fitness.

  • Katherine W

    Byron is an Amazing Coach! I live in the US so all our workouts are online. I can honestly say that through his talented coaching and incredible knowledge I am more physically fit than ever.
    I thought that working out with an ocean between us would be difficult but Byron takes the time to help me not only correct my lifts but understand the ” why” too. On top of being stronger, I have more energy and confidence as well. I live a very hands on life and being able to lift heavy weights correctly has carried over into my everyday tasks. I have tried many different forms of workouts, even other coaches but Byron is the best! Highly recommend to everyone.

  • David

    So I recently discovered Starting Strength, bought the book and app. I decided because I had been away from strength training for so long, that that I wanted to start over again with a one on one coaching session.

    Byron was great, explaining each lift with a demonstration, and then giving verbal instruction whilst attempting the exercise for the first time, then giving cues after that, until he and the student are happy with the form.

    I went away for my working weights for each exercise and got a good introduction into what program to start of with as a novice.

    He has loads of patience, always happy to answer questions, and re-explain an aspect of an exercise if you don’t think you quite have it correct.

    Highly recommended.

  • Aubrey Conradie

    I had an online session with Byron as I live in South Africa and I found him to be an excellent coach. He analysed all of my lifts, advised me on how to fix/improve them and even offered me programming advice. Additionally, he was very easy to talk to and he was happy to answer all of my questions.

  • Ian

    I’m a guy in his 50s who has been lifting a while but due to illnesses I had a long period away from the barbell last year. When I started again I had some real sticking points especially with the deadlift so organised a session with Byron.
    This was a great move!
    We met in the gym in Mayford & spent a couple of hours going over the lifts in detail. He demonstrated & worked on each lift with me to ensure I was getting the form correct (no surprise, I hadn’t been) & that I had the right reminders to help me lift better.
    He was also able to give some great advice on future planning & nutrition applying his deep appreciation & knowledge of every aspect of strength training.
    I’m already lifting better at home & I’ll plan to have more sessions with him in future to make sure I stay on track.
    I throughly recommend training with Byron.

  • David A

    I had a video call with Byron to go over my form and programming I’ve never had a coach but what a revelation. I wish I’d done this 10 years ago! Incredibly knowledgable and helpful.

  • Mark C

    Came all the way from Blackpool for a session with Byron. First of all really easy place to find and nice roomy gym that we had to ourselves for the whole session. At 6’7 I find things a little more difficult and I requested Byron to teach me as if I’ve never lifted before so covered all of the fundamentals. He was patient and encouraging and I was able to walk away feeling confident in starting my NLP with the ‘big four’.

    After covering the lifts we went through a section on programming tailored to me then finished with nutrition. I came away with lots of notes to refer to on my phone, a video of my best set for each of the lifts and the confidence to get stuck into the program. I’ll be checking in with Byron in the not too distant future and thoroughly recommend him no matter what your training needs are.

  • Robert Biddle

    I booked a session with Byron because I needed coaching in the power clean and bench press.
    In the 2 1/2 hour session, I managed to execute a half decent power clean. With the bench, it turned out that I had been gripping the bar too narrow ever since I started years ago.
    Byron gave me useful cues for these lifts, and also for the press. He took videos of the highlights and sent them to me for future reference.
    He also gave me good advice about elbow cuffs and shoulder mobility.
    I will definitely book him again.
    If you’re thinking about reaching out to a starting strength coach, don’t hesitate: contact Byron today!

  • Chris

    Great session! I asked Byron to help with longstanding lower back issues and to make me stronger and fitter now I’ve hit 40! He demonstrated proper technique and gave me a modified programme in the first instance until my back is stronger, and I wish I’d had this coaching years ago.

    Also, as a doctor (NHS consultant) I strongly recommend Byron and the StartingStrength programme as a simple and effective way to gain strength and for rehabilitation from injury.

  • Dave McK

    As a post-novice lifter who trains alone, I felt my squat was going off the rails a bit and my other lifts also needed checking. So I booked a session with Byron. He has a sharp coaching eye, plus the ability to communicate the necessary adjustments clearly and effectively. My squat was sorted quickly, and problems identified and solved with my press, bench and deadlift too. All this, combined with some great programming suggestions and nutrition tips, made the session with Byron the most productive couple of hours I have ever spent in a gym.

  • Steve Seymour

    I am a couple of months into my NLP and train in my home gym . 1st few weeks were fine but very soon I recognised I needed help. The SS videos online and the book helped but I wanted to see an actual SS coach. Luckily Byron Johnson who works out of a private gym in Guilford, UK is only an hour away from me. We met up in the gym and spent 3 hrs going over the squat, deadlift, press and bench press. His tips and ques were excellent, easy to understand and remember. He then kindly gave me programming advice for all the lifts for the next 3-6 months. We then went over nutrition and the importance of Protein intake. I really recommend looking him up and reaching out for a form check regardless of were you are as a lifter. It was well worth the money, has given me more confidence to push on and on top he is a great guy.

  • Chantelle Collins

    Byron and I started working together 3 months ago with the initial goal of learning how to do the compound lifts correctly so that I could replicate them in the gym – an environment where I was not the most comfortable. In this very short span of time, the results I’ve seen have been incredible. I have made exponential increases in my strength across all the lifts and am close to doubling my deadlift weight. Byron is very patient and has a holistic approach to training – accounting for many individual nuances, anticipating where roadblocks might come along to slow progress and adjusting the approach to navigate them. As a busy professional, I have an erratic schedule at times so I greatly appreciate the agility that Byron brings to his training approach.

    The biggest change for me, however, has been in my mindset. I have gone from being very unsure about what I’m doing in the gym to walking in with confidence and knowing exactly how to set myself up each session. I’ve gone from stressing out about counting calories and macros to tuning into my body and feeding it to fuel my progress in the gym.

    Byron holds you accountable, celebrates every milestone with you, and he’s pushed me beyond what I could have imagined possible when we first discussed my goals in our initial session. I highly recommend working with him if you want to completely change your perspective on strength training.

  • Caleb

    I contacted Byron as I was having problems with my deadlift. We met up and within a few minutes he had identified my problem and helped me fix it. We then went over the other lifts and again he pointed out errors I was making and how I could correct them. He also gave me advice on programming and nutrition, I was very happy with the whole experience and would highly recommend him. Normal, down to earth bloke too. Gym was also nice.

  • Robbie Mackenzie

    I travelled down from Scotland for a consultation with Byron. We covered all five of the main lifts as well as some additional time spent on programming and nutrition.

    Byron was extremely friendly and fun to work with. He gave me loads of fantastic cues and sorted out issues with all of my lifts. I’d highly recommend anyone make the trip to see Byron regardless of what stage of your strength journey.

  • Eric

    I flew down from Glasgow for a coaching session with Byron and I was really happy with how it went. His attention to detail is exactly what I was looking for, and he was great at pointing out where I was going wrong and cueing me during the lifts. Having tried for a long time to get into strength training and always being discouraged when I felt I didn’t know what I was doing, I am very glad to have worked with Byron as I finally feel confident I can progress in barbell training. His expertise was well worth travelling for.

    1. Patrick

      I took the opportunity to train with Byron when I was visiting London from Sweden it was totally worth it.
      If you want to train compound lifts (and you should) it’s definitely worth training with a coach who knows what he’s doing and Byron is definitely that.

  • Joel Knight

    I’ve been lifting using the SS method for a few months but was aware I had an issue with form on a few of the lifts. Anyway I booked Byron in for a session to go over my squats, DL and press and he was extremely helpful in showing me some of my issues and giving me the tools needed to change things. He took genuine enjoyment from seeing me begin to get certain things and was very helpful in explaining the rationale behind what he was asking of me. Wherever you’re an experienced lifter with impressive squat, bench, DL numbers or you’re totally new to lifting weights Byron will be an insightful, encouraging and engaged coach. I highly recommend both the strength and training philosophy method he uses and also his coaching skills.

  • John M

    I had a two and a half hour session with Byron earlier today. It was a brilliant experience. I learnt a lot and I also enjoyed it very much. I really can’t recommend Byron highly enough – he’s that good!

    I’d done some squatting before but the other Starting Strength lifts were totally new for me. I’m in my early fifties, have a sedentary job and need to lose fat for better health. Byron took into account my circumstances when discussing with me what my goals should be and what lifts I should concentrate on initially. His instructions, explanations and demonstrations were really clear and delivered in an always friendly (but also firm when required!) manner.

    He made lots of helpful corrections to my squatting form – which I could feel made an immediate difference – and also taught me step by step the proper way to do the other lifts. They’re things which I wouldn’t have picked up from reading or watching videos. With Byron clearly explaining and demonstrating the proper forms and correcting me when I tried them, this will no doubt save me a lot of time and wasted effort at the start of my strength training journey.

    Byron also checked on my nutrition and we also discussed about programming going forward, stretches to do at home (important given my lack of flexibility), how to warm up and also answers to all of the questions which I had. I ended up with lots of notes of points to bear in mind when setting up and performing each of the lifts and also a set of videos of me doing each lift which Byron made for me to review later. Byron very kindly offered that I could contact him again whenever I feel I need more support and how that might best fit into my schedule (whether that’s meeting up again, a video call or by e-mail). I definitely intend to see Byron again soon to check on my progress and keep me on track.

    I finished our session really full of enthusiasm and (for the first time in my life with physical exercise) I can’t wait until next week when I can go to my local gym to try out what I learnt today!

  • Matt D

    If you are contemplating booking a coaching session, I highly recommend you go ahead and do so with Byron.

    Byron is a really good guy with a wealth of knowledge, possessing the ability to solve the problems you want fixed and also to fix a load more you don’t realise you have.

    I’m a 44-yr-old with previous Starting Strength experience and have received good coaching from Starting Strength coaches in the past. I hadn’t lifted for 6 years after having kids and travelling for work took over my life and am now getting back into it again.

    Detrained with rusty form, I tweaked my lower back deadlifting and knew it was time to get help from a Starting Strength coach again.

    Did a 2-hour session with Byron for Deadlift, Bench and Press. He gave much appreciated advice on programming, nutrition and protein, forgiving me for being a vegan rather than the meat and milk guzzler I was previously.

    As we went through the lifts, he made a video of each of my top sets with the technique fixed so I can refer back to them. He also made notes on a whiteboard for me to photograph. I’m really happy with a change he made to my deadlift that feels really good on my lower back.

    I’d never bothered getting coached for Bench Press before, thinking my technique was fine. Byron set me straight, seeing that my bar path was inefficient and helping me dial in exactly where to move my elbows. Also teaching me a really nice way of stopping my lower back from aching during the lift.

    I’m really looking forward to booking another session with Byron to work on Power Cleans and to check my other lifts again as I progress up in weight. I’ve had a lot of low back niggles over the last few years and was really cautious of deadlifting despite it previously being my favourite lift. With what he has taught me, I now feel the confidence to go from deadlifting 60Kg at the beginning of this year, back up to and beyond my previous PR of 175Kg as a now older and vegan lifter.

    Thank you Byron.

  • Richard E

    If you live in the UK and are thinking about having a coaching session with Byron, do yourself a favour and just book him. He’s a nice guy, very knowledgable and will save you a lot of wasted time and effort.

    I discovered Starting Strength in 2021. After a couple of years of self coaching – reading the books and watching the videos – things had been going really well but lately my progress has been stalling. I was contemplating going over to Wichita Falls for the seminar before I discovered we had Byron, a certified SSC right here in the UK and he was a mere 40 miles from me. I immediately booked a session with him and a few days later I arrived at Profound Fitness.

    He immediately spotted some major flaws in my technique that I was completely unaware of. After 2 1/2 hours and many reps coaching squat, press, bench and deadlift, I left with my technique dialled in, form check videos for reference, detailed new programming and renewed confidence that I am back on track and ready for new PR’s.

    I’m looking forward to regular visits in the near future to stay on top of things.
    Cheers Byron, see you soon.

  • David Giles

    Byron is an excellent coach, both online and in person. He sees what is wrong and fixes it. And he puts a lot of effort into the online coaching so you can understand it. I don’t think you will find anyone better.

  • Toby Bridle

    I know I was stuck with form errors and programming and now I am not . Who solved the issues with minimal fuss and pin point accuracy? . Byron Johnson! . He’s like the lifter whisperer on steroids ( ok the wrong analogy given we are talking about weight lifting . No signs of gyno or acne on this man) .
    In all seriousness I can’t recommend Byron enough . He’s fully approved and accredited by Mr Rippetoe and it shows !! . I was stuck on all my lifts and clueless to what I should be doing going forward. All issue solved ! . It doesn’t get better as far as personal training for SS goes .

  • Rush

    Had a 2hr form session with Byron a couple of months ago. I’m not new to SS (did a DL and squat training camp pre pandemic) but train myself so all sorts of rubbish found its way into my training alongside inconsistency. Thoroughly recommend it and am definitely seeing the benefit having been reminded of the basics that I had been ignoring. I got a lot more out of this than the camp – perhaps the individual attention and the focus on the often neglected lifts. Will definitely be back. Thanks a tonne Byron!

  • Jon Kirke

    I had a 2 hour session with Byron recently and can say it was by far the best and most in depth training session I have ever had. I have been away from training for over a decade due to issues with my shoulder (impingement symptoms) and a torn meniscus in my knee. I have had surgery for both of these but have experienced ongoing pain in both. I came across SS barbell training, the SS website, and the Profound Fitness podcacst and decided to see if this was an option for me to get back into training.

    I made an appointment to see Byron to really try to understand the various lifts whilst explaining my shoulder/knee concerns. We went through them one by one and he was mindful of making sure the weight was manageable and the movements were not causing pain. He also explained that some adaptions could be necessary given my history but in the end I was able to perform the lifts with good form and no pain.

    SS barbell training is a very detailed book which I will continue reading but I found it very helpful to have someone who really understands the technique to walk you through the lifts in real time, providing you customised notes for each lift, videos of your form, cues when you need them and finally your programming for progression.

    Thanks Bryon!

  • James

    I went for an in person training session along with my wife. We wanted some expert help with unpicking some problems she was having with her form and for Byron to give me some pointers on what to look for when she was training. I work with a starting strength online coach and Byron also looked at my lifts just to see if there was anything that might not have come through on camera that could be improved, and gave some very helpful pointers.

    We had a great 2.5 hour session packed full of useful coaching and guidance. Byron took pictures of the right starting positions, made notes on cues to follow at home and really built my wife’s confidence over this session. He took the time to share thoughts on programming and diet.

    We live too far away to see Bryon as a weekly in person coach but would highly recommend him for anyone looking for this. For a one off coaching session this was excellent and something that we will likely come back for.

    Byron is very personable and creates a safe training environment where you feel comfortable to ask questions. A great experience all round.

  • Ollie Kelly

    I just had an excellent 1:1 session last week with Byron and it was excellent. He’s a lovely guy and can meet you where you are at and identify issues quickly and suggest changes in a very constructive manner. He really sets you up to make signficant progress and is passionate about spreading the word about SS across the UK (& Ireland where I flew in from).

    I’ve been training solo trying to implement the SS NLP in a somehwat haphazard manner and despite watching all manner of videos and re reading passages from the book was really struggling with certain elements of my setups with all the main lifts. Having Byron identify and help resolve those issues with a minimum of fuss was just fantastic and highyl recommmend him.

  • Tony

    Having had surgery, my training had been on hold for 157 days. Starting back in the gym was difficult from a mental, as well as a physical, perspective. Byron agreed to provide some 1:1 coaching for me while in the area.
    Man alive! After our session I felt that my confidence has returned. The way that Byron explained what was not going well with my lifts made so much sense, and telling me what was good with my lifts boosted my confidence so much. Great queues, from a knowledgeable professional coach, and thoroughly lovely chap. I would not hesitate in recommending Byron. If you reside in UK I would advise you to attend a Starting Strength camp so you can experience some first class coaching for yourself.

  • Ben

    I’d tried the Starting Strength method before, doing my best to work on my own lifting form using books and videos, but had never got as far as I wanted with it and really felt like I could benefit from some 1:1 barbell coaching. Discovering to my surprise that Byron (a certified Starting Strength coach) was actually quite near to me, I immediately arranged a session with him. From initial contact onwards, Byron couldn’t have been more friendly, helpful, knowledgable and professional. We spent three hours working through all the lifts as well as programming and nutrition at the excellent private gym facility in Mayford. Byron was able to immediately identify mistakes I was making and offer advice on how to correct them, taking photos and videos throughout for my own future reference. I don’t think my technique was a million miles off, but there were definitely a lot of small things that needed correcting that I never would have noticed without an expert on hand to offer guidance, and his advice on programming, nutrition and many other aspects of strength training was absolutely invaluable. I got exactly what I needed out of the session, and expect to be booking another one at a later date to check in on my form and make sure I’m on the right track. In the meantime, Byron is available to answer any questions that might arise as I progress. Can’t recommend him highly enough, a great experience.

  • Douglas

    Had an online “video form review” session with Byron; producing videos was easy enough as was uploading. Had a greatly productive session going through the SS lifts and videos getting a swath of feedback on each – hopefully setting me on the right path early on as a beginner. I hope to have an in person session at some point in future and continue the good work. Recommend.

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