Sports Athletes

‘Marc was key in my development towards becoming a professional athlete, a springboard that ultimately lead to Olympic Gold. Marc takes pride in seeing his athletes progress. You know that his enthusiasm, commitment and drive matches up to your own. In addition, his wealth of knowledge and attention to detail makes him a great coach.’ Callum Skinner, GB Cycling, Gold and Silver Medalist 2016 Olympic games.

Marc Keys is undoubtedly the best strength and conditioning coach I’ve had the pleasure of working with. Irregardless of level or ability his no nonsense, scientific approach gets you where you need to go. – Roan Morrison, Muay Thai Fighter, Co-Owner Hanuman Thai Boxing Edinburgh

“I was great to work with someone who has a genuine passion for what he does and who pushes you to improve.  I Made massive gains working the Marc that set me up perfectly for the rest of my career.  When I first started working with mark he rehabbed an injury which managed me to return to play and to avoid an operation by carrying out a first class rehab programme.

Sarah Robertson, Great Britain & Scotland Hockey.


“I trained under Marc’s strength & conditioning support in the lead up to my London 2012 Olympic trials in Glasgow Commonwealth Games. One phase of those challenges was to increase my maximal strength for back squats (whilst maintaining good form and at parallel knee position). In 8 weeks Marc designed and coached me through a programme that saw my back squat pb increase from 110kgs to 127.5kgs. Marc has a great mix of coaching good technique and also coaching you through when it’s time to just get on and do it. What I liked best was Marc walked his talk and is a role model of what he teaches and coaches and along the way he Marc brings lots of humour and Irish banter to my sessions (which is important when your training can be very serious at times!) – Jenny Davis, Scottish Cycling, Silver Medalist 2010 Commonwealth Games

“I was coached by Marc between 2009-2011, as a young judo athlete on the Institute of Sport. From my own personal experience I can say that Marc’s strongest virtues as a strength and conditioning coach include his sharply concise and accurate feedback, his ability to optimally motivate a variety of different athletes/personalities, and his good natured temperament and approachability. From his online writing it is obvious that he has an incredibly deep knowledge and understanding of his craft, which he thoughtfully applies when coaching in the gym. His own no-nonsense, disciplined and hardworking approach to training is something that is infectious for those around him. A true professional.” – Roy Shepherd, Scottish Judo Athlete

Rugby Players

I met Marc a couple of years ago when he joined Edinburgh Rugby. I had just broken my leg and was out of action for a couple of month’s rehabbing and training my upper body with Marc. He was instrumental in helping me strengthen my back and glutes which resulted in my chronic back ache disappearing. He was then tasked with helping me get back to match fitness through a combination of lower body strength and speed work as well as MAS running on the pitch. He has grown as a coach through his time with Edinburgh going from a world class lifting coach to being able to apply his knowledge to a rugby specific environment. A pleasure to work with. – Tim Visser, Scotland (31 caps), Barbarians, Harlequins, Edinburgh Rugby, Newcastle Falcons (3x Pro 12 top try scorer and young player of the year 2011).

I worked under Keyso’s fantastic guidance for 2 years at the Edinburgh Rugby club, and during that time learnt a huge amount about not only training but how to successfully train to fit my body composition.

Marc has a great understanding of how to get the best out of athletes not only from a physical standpoint but psychologically as well. He does this through tailoring each and every program to suit the individual player not by sticking to a generic script, and it is through this that I always felt I was able to reach an optimal level.

Can’t thank Keyso enough for his guidance and friendship during my time at Edinburgh and I truly believe that this next venture will be an overwhelming success

Ollie Atkins – Aviva premership winner (2016-2017) with Exeter Chiefs, Edinburgh Rugby, Scotland A, Waratahs, The Force

I first encountered Marc at the Scottish institute of Sport when I was 19 and then again a few years later at Edinburgh Rugby, so I have had the pleasure of being coached by him for many years. Without a doubt he is the one Strength and Conditioning coach that has made the greatest contribution to my development as an athlete, especially in the gym. Being an extremely accomplished lifter himself, I found that he was able to convey practical tips and advice he had learned from his own experience rather than from a textbook. Since being at Edinburgh rugby for a number of years, I have seen a huge change in Marc and he has developed into an extremely well rounded strength and conditioning coach. Whoever has the opportunity to be coached by him is very fortunate indeed. – Matt Scott – Centre, Scotland (38 caps), Gloucester, Edinburgh Rugby

I’ve been extremely lucky and grateful to have had Marc as my strength and conditioning coach over the last few years. Keyso has taken great pride and interest towards my development as an athlete, extending his adept knowledge and expertise into my training while also adhering to my own personal goals. Through his own experience of being an extremely successful lifter, I was confident I would reach my goals under his guidance as he has recognised what works and what doesn’t work. After training with Marc for 4 seasons, I have comfortably comprehended the correct and strongest lifting techniques in the gym required to progress myself as an athlete which I have noticeably felt on the rugby field. Keyso is an extremely dedicated coach, the effort he puts in for you as an individual is second to none. Marc is highly motivating and genuinely cares about your progress – this motivation made me work harder for him personally as a coach. I would greatly recommend Marc if the opportunity arises to train with him, you will not regret it. Great bloke. – Ben Toolis – Second Row, Scotland (3 caps), Edinburgh Rugby, London Irish

Marc and I spent a lot of time together at Edinburgh rugby, being in charge of my rehab programs getting back from long term injuries. I have had my share of set backs during my career to injuries,the hardest thing is definitely getting back to the shape/or better shape than you were before the injury. I can honestly say that if you need to get in the best shape possible, than I honestly recommend Marc. There some dark days but it was all worth it and I am not going to lie, Marc’s sessions were some of the hardest I have had to endure but the end result exceeded my expectations and with Marc being accessible through his online business, I would definitely seek his services again without hesitation in the near future.   – Will Helu – Winger, Tonga (23 caps), Edinburgh Rugby, London Wasps, Bristol Rugby, Grenoble

I worked with Keyso for 3 years at Edinburgh Rugby and we developed and grew significantly both professionally and personally. He training me with a Gym focus initially but quickly grew into an amazing all round S&C coach.  He combines his knowledge of lifting technique with his understanding of conditioning training with a really personal approach. He grew and improved my body with a personal touch that the whole time that most S&C coaches miss ; which is you knew he was being selfless and trying to better you.  He’s a man that deserves and earns respect, and someone you want to work hard for and with. I’ve no doubt he’ll have a massive impact on more athletes and people in the future and look forward to working with him again.
Only thing is he has terrible taste in music. Every rose has its thorn. – James Hilterbrand, USA Rugby Captin (10 caps), Warratahs, Edinburgh Rugby, Western Force

Weekend Warriors/Lifters

I have known Marc for around 7 years, he first helped to coach me as a novice Olympic weightlifter at the age of 15. I found him to be very approachable and very understanding of me throughout the years I have worked him. His expertise in powerlifting and weightlifting are second to none, he has extensive experience coaching, programming and competing at a very high level. I found him too be a lot more caring and thoughtful about my progress in my chosen sport of weightlifting than many other coaches have been, I would definitely recommended Marc as any form of strength coach, being that strength and conditioning, powerlifting or weightlifting. – Zachary courtney – Current under 23 Scottish Weightlifting Record Holder (Snatch, Clean and Jerk, Total)

Anyone who has trained with Marc will know he doesn’t do things by half, he never has and his own personal best lifts are testament to this.  His training principles and ideas are always around working hard, but working smart at the same time and doing things the right way with absolutely no room for ego anywhere.  Be warned he won’t blow sunshine up your ass, but tells it like it is and knows how to get results! – Mark Knowles, Weightlifter.

Let me start with just how proficient Marc is with spotting little mistakes and presenting it in a way that is encouraging and makes people feel good about progressing.  In the sessions Marc runs I have noticed that people have a great time in an encouraging and positive environment.

Marc is a very busy guy but he always takes time to listen and even banter. Having a keen ear (although you may have already heard the scenario before!) is great for any coach, however your diligence doesn’t go unnoticed.

Marc assisted me with my squat form over a year ago and I’m still making benefits from it today! Sounds cliché but it would have taken me longer to get the information and eventually integrate it into my training.

Overall I’d say Marc is the best type of coach because you have advanced knowledge that you can tailor to individuals, people are comfortable when Marc when he coachs them (no awkwardness) and you also have results in powerlifting! Yes, I am jealous of Marc’s bench! – Obie Montega, IT Security, Powerbuilder (240kg squat, 150kg bench and 290kg deadlift)

Marc is a very knowledgeable, dedicated Strength and Conditioning Coach, and it shows in his results. He decided to take me under his wing 5 years ago and I have learnt tremendous amounts and increased my strength drastically, lots of other clients have had the same positive results. I have seen him develop from a keen masters student, into an integral part of the coaching team at Edinburgh Rugby, working his strength wizardry on the players. – Struan Urquhart, Oil and Gas Engineer, Somtimes Powerlifter, Sometimes Powerbuilder (210kg squat, 165kg bench, 220kg deadlift @ 83kg bodyweight).

Coaches / Fitness Professionals

I worked a long side Marc in the Edinburgh University gym while I was at university. It is only in hindsight I realise how incredibly lucky I was to have Marc’s expertise guide me into strength training. It has no doubt saved me years of following rubbish advice and experiencing no progress.  My favourite thing about Marc’s approach to training is his no nonsense style. I’ve known Marc for over 5 years now and he consistently takes people and makes them strong(er). If strength is your goal I have full confidence in recommending Marc. – Emma Storey Gordan, ESG Fitness

‘’ Marc is an outstanding strength and conditioning coach with a wealth of experience he brings to any environment. I have had the pleasure of working with him mainly as a  professional player and would say through his coaching, programme and guidance was where I made my biggest progressions in my strength levels as an athlete throughout my career. Spent a lot of time with him as a long term injured player also while at Edinburgh rugby and his knowledge, attention to detail and work ethic was what really stood out for me. Now being on the other side and starting out on my coaching career he is a great role model to call upon to learn from but more importantly he is just a top guy all round!’’ – Chris Leck, Strength and Conditioning Coach, SRU Academy (Edinburgh), Former Professional Player, Scrum Half – Edinburgh Rugby, Sale Sharks.

I worked with Marc in the build up to British nationals. I was battling a knee injury at the time and working with Marc helped immensely, he programmed in a way that allowed me to recover and deliver a competitive total in the 93s. – Johnny Watson, Co-Creator Proane fitness and 93kg Powerlifter 

‘Marc is the real deal – in an industry where I wouldn’t trust most online trainers with my cat, Marc is unrelentingly grounded in what works. While he’s focused on the evidence and devours research, he translates that into a pragmatic, tailored approach to his athletes based on their individual needs.

I’ve worked with him both online and offline, and his duty of care, follow up and attention to detail is like nothing I’ve seen from any other coach’ – Yusef Smith, Co-Creator Propane Finess

I have had the opportunity to train with Marc, and I have found his seminars very educational. He is very to the point and helped me develop my lifts quickly and effectively. I still feel there is a great deal that I could learn from him and hope to do so further. I really enjoyed meeting him and would recommend learning from him at any opportunity you have. – Robert Andrew strachan – Strachan Health Fitness Nutrition