I like getting up!

If I’m at home and in need of a quick bit of exercise, one of my favourite things to do (other than, you know, burpees) is the Turkish get up. Nice having a kettle bell in my office.

Others agree with me that it’s a great movement. Why? Read Why the get up is my favorite exercise

It’s got good historical credibility.

Famous strongmen of ages past did not ask each other how big their bench press was, or even how much they squatted. Racks and benches are a relatively modern invention, first surfacing only in the last hundred years….”The one-arm get-up is a general test of strength, which had considerable appeal to most strongmen of yesteryear…It has always made a hit with the theatrical public, for it was obvious to them that magnificent strength was being displayed when an athlete did a one-arm get-up with a heavy bell.”

Or another person. Don’t try this at home! (Image from Venus with Biceps, which we love, love, love. See here.)

get up

It’s also a great all body workout, excellent for functional fitness.

Here’s a short list of everything that we can get from within a single get up:

  • Single leg hip stability during the initial roll to press and during the bridge.
  • Both closed and open chain shoulder stability.
  • Shoulder mobility.
  • Thoracic extension and rotation.
  • Hip and leg mobility and active flexibility.
  • Stability in two different leg patterns – lunge stance as well as squat stance.
  • Both rotary and linear stability.
  • The ability to link movement created in our extremities to the rest of our body.”

Turkish Get Up

While the old-fashioned lifters used bells, and our lifters above use each other, these days the get-up is most often done with kettle bells. I like these ones!


4 thoughts on “I like getting up!

  1. I’m scared to try these because it looks like such a complex movement. (I waited, like, three years between first being shown how to do a power clean and actually trying one, without even putting any weight on the bar! I don’t have the greatest sense of what my body is doing or ability to plan movements, so complex, multi-part movements are extra hard for me. Not saying the Turkish Get-Up is off limits, because it does look like a good exercise, but just that it looks really hard and I’d probably need to practice a lot without weight first.)

  2. The website “Art of Strength” used to have great videos breaking down the Turkish Get Up. I’m not sure they’re still there (last time I checked they were kind of hidden), but it’s worth trying to dig them up.

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