How to do a Turkish Get Up with Kettlebell | Kettlebell Kings

The Start - Position 1

The Get Up is a complex movement but with undeniable benefits for strength, stability and mobility. The time invested in practicing this skill will be rewarded with healthier, more bulletproof shoulders; impressive core strength, and a bit of hip mobility to boot. To master this skill yourself, it is best to practice in parts and spend time owning each position.

To start, lay on your side, grasp the KB with both hands, and pull it in close to your ribs. Then roll to your back, press the bell up with two hands (for safety), and plant the same-side foot on the floor. The arm and leg opposite to the KB will start straight.

And that’s it! Except not really, because in Hard Style training the intention is to get the most out of each position and movement.

To get the most out of the Get Up, we want to “own our alignment” and move smoothly under the KB. We want to feel as if the earth is holding the KB, and not our shoulder doing the work. These require us to generate and maintain optimal tension even before we get moving.

.Check out the image above for the cues we give our students (as needed!) at the start position of the Get Up. In order to be comfortable generating force through your elbow and foot in the ground, some of these angles will require experimentation. At the end of the day, you must find what works for you in order to stay tight, move smoothly, and maintain good shoulder and trunk positions.

If you are serious about kettlebell training, owning the Get Up is a must. Check out our website to see how to train and learn with us.

How to do a Turkish Get Up with Kettlebell | Kettlebell Kings

At The Hand - Position 3

The Get Up is a dynamic movement that can be practiced as a whole or individual positions. Each position can be uniquely challenging for students and reveal limitations that are worth working on. Just one more reason why the Get Up is a “must” to master for serious kettlebellers.

Nailing the Tall-Sit position requires a certain amount of mobility, specifically the hamstrings and thoracic spine. This means that practicing the transition to your hand with the intention of nailing it can improve these qualities!

When moving from the elbow to the hand, push down into the ground through the heel of the hand and simultaneously the heel of the planted foot (Split the Earth!). This will help maintain the feeling that the floor is carrying the load. When you are at the hand, take your time to find the right angle for your arms and legs.

Check out the cues in the image for more tips to nail this position. Specifically, here are a couple of common mistakes to look out for:

  • Keeping the fingers pointed forward instead rotate the fingers 45 degrees or more behind you. Think about opening a pickle jar (or whatever jar you like).

  • Picking up the hand and swinging it behind you in the transition. You may make a small adjustment of the hand position by sliding it closer to your hip.

  • Knee internally collapsing, usually from lack of tension in the floor through the foot. Expect the knee to stay relatively vertical.

  • The straight leg is bent or digging into the floor. Our next transition will require that we move the straight leg, so be prepared by taking weight away from it.

​​​​​​​Need help or just want to master your technique faster? Check out our website to see how to train and learn with us

Turkish Get Up - The High Bridge | Kettlebell Kings

The High Bride - Position 4b

Another option to set up for the Leg Sweep Transition is to execute a High Bridge before moving the straight leg. This demands more coordination in the transition and is best practiced only after you own Position 5 and know exactly the knee position that works for you.

In exchange for more complexity, the High Bridge gives an added mobility benefit for hip extension in the rooted side if you look to maximize your single-leg glute bridge. In this position, there should be plenty of clearance to slide the knee underneath for the next position.

To make this transition smooth, it's essential that your straight leg remain relatively un-loaded. When you are ready to transition to the Half-Kneeling position, do your best to maintain as pure a single leg glute bridge as possible on the rooted leg. In other words, imagine a scale is underneath the heel of your straight leg and try to make it read very light. Then bend the leg and sweep the knee into position.

Check out the cues we use in the image above and give it a try. Need help or just want to master your technique faster? Check out our website to see how to train and learn more with us!

Turkish Get Up - The Half Kneel | Kettlebell Kings

Get-Up: The Half Kneel - Position 6

Once you have completed the Half-Kneeling Windmill transition, you want to position yourself to be ready for a smooth Lunge. You have two options to position into the lunge:

  1. "Windshield Wiper" the back foot by swinging the shin and knee to be parallel to the front foot.

  2. Step the front leg in to be parallel to the shin and knee of the back leg. Avoid stepping too far and crossing. This options is great for those with sensitive knees.

During both options, watch your alignment. The key to success here is to maintain the feeling of the ground "holding the weight for you".

Make adjustments by sliding the front foot to establish a flat foot and knee bent at 90 degrees. Tuck the toes of the rear foot and freeze to own the position before you get ready to stand.

This is often a position that gets rushed in the Get Up, whether because of building shoulder fatigue or for excitement to stand up. Check the cues above, and practice feeling the energy of the bell transfer straight to the floor (saving your shoulder energy!). There is never a reason to start the next transition until you are comfortable in your current position.

Need help or just want to master your technique faster? Check out our website to see how to train and learn with us!

How to do Turkish Get Up to Elbow | Kettlebell Kings

At The Elbow - Position 2

There are few skills more functional for real-life than the ability to get up from and down to the ground with comfort and ease (or at least a plan!). For this reason, we have all of our students practice the Get Up in one form or another.

For some--especially those with mobility limitations-- they will spend a lot of time only working to the Elbow. Fortunately, owning just this position and the transition to get here has massive benefits for your shoulders and core. Often, it is also the most challenging part of the Get Up for students to nail.

When the transition to the elbow is done well, it should look and feel like a ‘roll’ to the elbow rather than a ‘sit up and lean” to the elbow. Roll implies rotation, which means your chest should no longer be facing the sky. The heel of the planted foot drives into the floor and assists the elbow which pulls hard into the ground. The result is a smooth roll to your side, with your weight on one hip.

Once you are at the elbow, the game has truly begun because you need to keep working with that grounded foot and elbow. If you are able to maintain tension into the floor through these two points with full-body tension, you will succeed in “feeling like the earth is holding the weight”. Check out the image above to see all of the cues for full-body tension and learn to own the Get Up at the Elbow.

Need help or just want to master your technique faster? Check out our website to see how to train and learn with us

Turkish Get Up - The Low Sweep | Kettlebell Kings

The Low Sweep - Position 4a


The Leg Sweep Transition can be one of the trickiest parts of the Get Up because it demands great tension, coordination, and single-leg strength.

One option for completing the sweep is to pre-bend the straight leg, which is the set up for the Low Sweep.

The Low Sweep lends itself to maximum efficiency in the Get Up because the athlete is positioned to FEEL the minimum hip lift needed to slip the knee into place. If you are working heavy or have limited hip extension/strength in the rooted leg, efficiency will be key.

Getting "Foot-to-Foot" cuts down on the coordination needed during the sweep by cutting the movement in half. This can make placement of the knee directly under the hip more manageable when first learning, making it a great option for beginners. Beginners also get another chance to reinforce their pressure in the floor through the rooted hand and foot.

Once you are foot-to-foot with proper tension through the floor, simply slide the knee along the floor into place at the same time as you bridge through your rooted leg. NEXT IS POSITION 4b!

Need help or just want to master your technique faster? Check out our website to see how to train and learn with us! NEXT IS POSITION 4b!

Turkish Get Up - The Half Kneeling Windmill | Kettlebell Kings

The Half Kneeling Windmill - Position 5

Make sure to read POSITION 4b to the left first!The Half-Kneeling Windmill position refers to the three point stance and is named after the transition to come next. In order to be successful in the transition, set up is KEY! So take the time to find the correct knee placement.

The knee should be placed behind the bottom hand, creating a relatively straight line from the posted hand, to the kneeling knee, to the foot on the same leg. Aim to make a comfortable triangle or 90 degree angle between the rooted foot, the kneeling knee, and the rooted hand.

The next transition, the Half-Kneeling Windmill, is a hip hinge. Align your weight over the bottom knee with front foot planted firmly, then squeeze the glutes to bring your torso to a vertical position. This transition will bring the Kettlebell to a full overhead position.

To own the position better, you can work on the Half-Kneeling Windmill movement on it's own (from Position 6 to Position 5) or you can try a drill starting from Position 5 and sweeping back and forth from Position 4.

To nail the knee position better, try this drill using a wall to help your Low Sweep and your Hinge:

  • Start in the three point stance with your foot against the wall and all of your angles set up.

  • Keep your arm raised overhead (on the same side as the knee that's up)

  • Hinge your hips back towards the wall. This becomes a target to aim for as you transition to Position 5.

  • Now reset and sweep through to Position 3.

  • When you are in the Tall Sit position and ready to sweep to Position 5, aim to place the foot back against the wall.

  • Repeat until it's muscle memory 👍


As mentioned earlier, spend some time in this position. Use the cues in the above image as a guide and use the drills to build comfort. Need help or just want to master your technique faster? Check out our website to see how to train and learn more with us!

How to do Turkish Get Up While Standing | Kettlebell Kings

Standing - Position 7

Despite what the name implies, the Standing position is typically considered the halfway point of the Get Up. In other words, the Get Up is not done until you "Get Down". If you have been diligent in owning each position on the way up, then the path back down to start should be intuitive.

However, intuitive doesn't mean easy. So here are some helpful hints that will help smooth things out:


  • As you initiate your descent, keep your weight on the front leg as you step back. As you place your foot and then your knee on the floor behind you, aim to do both softly.

  • In your Windmill transition to the floor, be sure to "wind up the shoulder" and load the lat as you root your hand in the floor.

  • Avoid reaching the bottom hand too far as you post into the floor or softening the elbow as you load the hand.

  • It is often a struggle to maintain strong extension in the elbow on the kettlebell side. Keep visualizing "pushing yourself away from the kettlebell", through the whole movement and especially on the way down.

Check out the cues we use in the image above to set yourself up for success on the way down. Need help or just want to master your technique faster? Check out our website to see how to train and learn more with us!