Today’s #wednesdayworkout involved my old favourite – The Turkish Get Up TGU.

I agreed to meet up with Brad, a trainer who had just finished his own exercise workout. Brad has a good foundation of strength and knowledge of weights but has not used Kettlebells regularly, so me being the KB raving fan suggested a short session focusing on this classic move.

The complete movement from start to finish is whole -body exercise which from the onset targets the core specifically when raising off the floor while simultaneously keeping 1 arm vertically outstretched and locked out holding a kettlebell. This Ipsilateral hold of the kettlebell works the muscles along that side from the wrist down the arm towards the obliques / core area. A hip raise follows with additional lower body and core recruitment required, especially during the transition to a low lunge (and still the single arm stays aloft).

The final, often challenging move is from the floor in that lunge position up to standing.

There are so many components of this wholistic exercise that make it superior to the isolation exercises such as the bicep curl or leg extension. Such basic exercises have their place as introductory, fitness anatomy familiarisation  (or body building staples for others)

Thus today, it was important to regress the exercise by 1. not using a weight (KB) in order to master correct execution of the exercise and 2. Choosing an appropriate size of KB as a progression.

Another benefit is the ability of the TGU to help draw attention to muscle weaknesses or imbalances. By doing so appropriate programming and action can be taken to address these emerging issues.

Is it worth doing with all its complexity and potential difficulties that appear to take up time rather than save it?

I’d still say YES, as even the complete movement can be broken down into elements which are still challenging and indeed exercises in their own right. The TGU is also an effective exercise with or without a kettlebell.

Finally, throughout the exercise the core – in this context the cylinder of lower back, abdominals and pelvic floor muscles – is constantly worked hard therefore saving time at the end of an exercise session when those ‘ABs’ are religiously given 5-10mins

More ‘Time Saver’ exercises to come!