How To Do The Half Turkish Get Up

How To Do The Half Turkish Get Up

An instructional video from Forest Vance on how to do the Turkish get-up.


The first time I tried the Turkish to get up, I hated it.

I learned it from someone great at DOING the exercise themselves but didn’t know how to TEACH it properly … and as a result, I honestly thought it was a bogus move. It hurt my shoulders and lower back, and I was almost ready to give up.

It wasn’t until I learned how to do it properly – at my first RKC certification – that I realized just how valuable and what a great exercise it was (and is). The TGU is a fantastic move for both shoulder mobility and stability, for building core strength, for both hip mobility and stability … the list goes on and on.

HOWEVER – the fact remains that it’s a tricky move. That’s why I always recommend folks start with the half Turkish get-up. It’s a movement that provides many of the same benefits as the full TGU but is much easier to learn. Once the half-get-up is mastered, it’s then time to move on to the full version of the exercise.

Today’s video and post quickly break down how to perform the half Turkish get up. Please enjoy it!!

Today I have a special video for my friend Rick Kaselj of Exercises For Injuries. I’m going to talk about a new kettlebell exercise that you can use in your workouts, or with your training clients.

The Half Turkish Get Up.

You may or may not have seen this exercise, but it is a great way to learn the TGU. The Turkish get-up is a great exercise for shoulder and stability, core strength, hip mobility, and other things.

But – it is also a bit tricky to learn and has many moving parts.

The half TGU is great to start with, and you can do it as a stand-alone exercise, but it also helps you learn the full movement. So I’ll walk you through it!

The full Turkish get-up goes from lying on the ground to standing with a kettlebell overhead. We’re just practicing the first half of the movement with the half-get-up.

So all we’re going to do is start with the kettlebell right at the shoulder. The hand goes right through the bell’s handle, pulls it up to the frame, and rolls to the back.

Kettlebell Right at the Shoulder

Punch the kettlebell up towards the ceiling. You want it right above your shoulder. Elbows locked out, shoulders sucked down into the socket. Your shoulders should be nice and stabilized, and your lats are engaged. All those muscles that surround the shoulder should be nice and tight.

Half Turkish get up

So like I said – all we’re going to do is half of the movement. Right heel, same leg as your arm is up. Your right heel is up towards the right glute, and your left leg and hand are out. Drive through the right heel and punch up towards the elbow. Now we’re going to go up to the hand and into a bridge. Drive through this heel, and push the right knee out with your belly button towards the ceiling. Corkscrew with your bottom shoulder towards the floor and come back down.

Standard Half Turkish Get Up

The standard half Turkish get up is a progression of the standard get up. It is an exercise that tests core strength as you work to keep your spine and hips aligned as you move from one position to another. The standard half Turkish get-up begins in a lying position on your back with your legs straight, hips and knees bent, and your arms extended overhead. You will perform a rollout to extend your arms and legs from the lying position so they end up in a plank position. You will lower your hips to the ground from the plank position while extending your legs, keeping your back flat and hips stacked throughout the movement. You will finish in a prone position with your hips and knees bent, and your arms extended overhead.

That’s your half Turkish get up. Train hard, and see you next time! That’s a great thing to do to learn the full movement and get many of the same benefits.

Forest Vance, MS, RKC II
Author, Kettlebell Challenge Workouts

If you liked this workout, check out Forest’s new full kettlebell program at

Thanks, and talk to you soon.

Rick Kaselj, MS

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