Our Mission

We believe that every person can be a strength athlete.

Seniors come to us to maintain their longevity. Women gain new empowerment and physical purpose through strength. Parents are more able to keep up with growing children. Queer and trans people find an environment that is affirming, safe, and welcoming. People of all sizes discover new confidence in their bodies without diet culture. 

We are proud of how strong we ALL are.

About Bay Strength

Bay Strength is a personal training and weight lifting studio. We offer private 1 on 1 and small group coaching in the barbell lifts, with customized programming for every age and ability. Our studio features 11 lifting platforms for squatting, bench pressing, pressing, and deadlifting. Bay Strength is made up of five passionate and experienced strength coaches: Katherine Bickford, Gwyn Brookes, Kelly Bryant, Giacomo Pizzo, and Jeremy Tully. Whether you want to be stronger for improved health and everyday life or for athletic performance, we are specially qualified to help you. We are based in Berkeley, CA.


Training with Bay Strength

Learn to Lift

Begin your strength journey with us! In our two session Lean to Lift package, you will learn the four major barbell lifts: the squat, the press, the bench press, and the deadlift. We will establish good form and help you begin a training program. 

Online Coaching

Online coaching offers a compelling package: regular review of lift technique by expert strength coaches — all while doing your workouts at your regular gym.

Strength Classes

Barbell training is the most successful when it it pursued with consistent coaching in the company of like minded people with the same goal: to get stronger! Form errors and programming missteps can be avoided with guidance of your coach, and your training will benefit from the support of classmates and training partners who will cheer you to success. 

Personal Training

There is no substitute for one-on-one private coaching. In personal training sessions, the coach can devote full attention to one person, giving a thorough critique of lifting technique. The one-on-one nature of personal training sessions means ample time to answer technique, nutrition, and programming questions.

Expert Coaches

Meet Our Team

Katherine Bickford

Katherine Bickford

Strength Coach

Katherine Bickford is a competitive powerlifter and strength coach in Oakland, California. After years as a competitive swimmer, and several years of a total lapse in physical activity, Katherine discovered strength training. When learning to squat, Katherine couldn’t stand up with her bodyweight! Since starting from zero, Katherine has made barbell training a way of life. She loves helping people discover their strength potential.

Giacomo Pizzo

Giacomo Pizzo

Strength Coach

Giacomo has a background in endurance sports, especially cycling and competitive swimming. He believes strength training is the foundation to any sports program or physical life task. He enjoys a good espresso, anything Frank Zappa and lots of Jazz.

Gwyn Brookes

Gwyn Brookes

Strength Coach

A former professional dancer, Gwyn holds a sandan (3rd degree black belt) in Danzan Ryu Jujutsu and Toyama Ryu Battodo and a yondan (4th degree) in Aikido. In 2008, Gwyn discovered barbell training and realized that getting stronger was the most effective way to continue to do what she loves. She especially loves coaching older adults and helping them regain function in their daily lives.

Jeremy Tully

Jeremy Tully

Strength Coach

Jeremy has been training and coaching others in the barbell lifts for several years, and a full time strength coach since 2015. A teacher by nature, Jeremy especially loves introducing people to the lifts for the first time.

Kelly Bryant

Kelly Bryant

Strength Coach

Kelly Bryant is a longtime personal trainer and strength coach who firmly believes that strength training leads to a healthier and happier life. Her mission is to support her clients to become their strongest selves! Kelly’s clients range from trained athletes looking to improve their performances, to older adults looking to improve their health. Prior to coaching, Kelly worked as a horse trainer and riding coach, and as a youth counselor.


What People Are Saying

I came to Katherine as a brand new lifter looking to improve my overall fitness in preparation for a 2,500 mile off-road motorcycle race.

She’s super encouraging, and truly excited about lifting! I really appreciate her ability to demystify entire strength training experience–from how the mechanics of individual lifts work to gym culture.

I’m amazed at how I’ve not only gotten significantly stronger in the few months I’ve been working with her, but my stamina has improved dramatically as well. I am so thrilled to have her in my corner!


Gwyn is an awesome coach: kind and supportive, but also rigorous about correct form. She is knowledgeable and enthusiastic, and has a plan in mind for both coaching sessions and the ones on my own. I look forward to going to the gym – and cannot believe I’m saying that!

I wish I had known about weight-lifting years ago. I never thought it applied to someone like me. So wrong. Just doing things around the house is easier. Lifting airplane luggage into the overhead compartment – magically lighter. General body wellbeing better. Thanks, Gwyn!


I drove just shy of 100 miles to meet Jeremy for a personal training session. It was well worth the time and money. He was able to notice and correct my form flaws, and provide correction in a way that helped immediately.

Jeremy is very professional, he knows his craft and is capable of teaching in a way that even I could grasp. He is personable, sincere and really wants to make you better. He never once made me feel rushed for time, he wanted me to leave with the confidence that I knew the lifts properly.


Get Started

Use the contact form below to tell us about yourself, your goals, and what times you are available. We’ll be in touch within one business day.

We are located in Berkeley at 1440 University Ave.