How Fast Should You Do The Turkish Get-Up?

How fast should you do the TGU (AKA Turkish Get-Up)? Not fast, would be the easiest answer.

For the best strength results, Cavemantraining has defined the time to complete the TGU as follows. These times will turn this into a super griding movement which is great for staying under tension and demonstrating that you control the movement and not vice versa.

The time to take for completing the TGU is approx. 20 seconds to get up and 18 seconds to get down. If you include the safety roll, chest press, and preparation then you can count 1 minute per rep. Broken down as follows. Again, these are approximate but definitely not impossible and also tested in a real environment.


TGU Getting Up

  • 4 seconds—elbow
  • 3 seconds—hand
  • 3 seconds—hips
  • 2 seconds—knee
  • 3 seconds—kneel up
  • 1 second—line up
  • 4 seconds—stand up

20 seconds in total to get up.


TGU Getting Down

  • 4 seconds—reverse lunge
  • 1 second—line up
  • 3 seconds—post on the hand
  • 2 seconds—kick through
  • 2 seconds—sit down
  • 2 seconds—elbow
  • 4 seconds—shoulder blades

18 seconds in total to get down.

If you add the safety roll, getting into position, chest or triceps press, preparation, and also the lowering of the bell to the ground then it takes approx. 1 minute per rep.


Should a TGU Be Performed Slow or Fast?

The TGU should be performed as slow as is required while maintaining good form and technique. The slower you do it the longer you’re under tension and the more you can demonstrate that you have the weight under control. Faster is easier, faster is also more prone to injury. Does that mean a TGU should never be done fast? No, it does not. If you are in complete control of the weight and can perform a super slow TGU with that weight and doing it fast works toward the goal you’re working for then do it.

The right progression to the TGU is bodyweight only, then using a light weight, slow and controlled pace, then super slow pace, heavier weight, full control, and then faster if needed. In general, the TGU is much better served as a slow grinding exercise though.

In a way, super slow helps with mobility, as well as strength as you’re longer under tension. In short, there are different benefits you get. Faster will allow more weight. How fast should you do it? Depends on your condition, weight used, goal, etc.


Turkish Get-Up Facts

  • A TGU should never be done fast if you have not mastered the movement slowly
  • A TGU can be performed faster if the movement is performed correctly and safely
  • Performing a TGU with a near 1RM weight is never recommended
  • The TGU is a strength exercise but also trains one to comfortably get up off the ground
  • A TGU does not only need to be performed with a heavy weight
  • The more unbroken reps you do on one side the more you work on the muscular endurance of the shoulder
  • The more you switch the more you involve the chest press (chest muscles) and also allow for more of a cardio effect


To master the Turkish Get-Up and many other Get-Up variations check out Master The Get-Up by Cavemantraining.


Fun fact. I have programmed the TGU with 10 seconds per movement (or several combined) totaling about 60 seconds to get up and 60 seconds to get down. That’s 2 minutes under the weight per repetition. Perform 10 reps and you have a 20 minutes workout. Show us your griding TGU in our group.


Other Turkish Get-Up Videos And Info

Below are some videos of combos that include the TGU and also a very important video on how to prevent forearm bruising, which is a problem that some people might experience.

Kettlebell Bent-Press into TGU


The TGU From Different Angles


The TGU into Overhead Squat


Are Your Forearms Bruising?

Are your forearms bruising from the kettlebell weight? I have made a video that explains the cause and how to prevent it. You can unlock the nearly 5-minute long video below with a simple social share.



Get-Up Without a Kettlebell

The Get-Up is not just a Turkish Get-Up as covered in our online course, there are many variations, in the video below I demonstrate some cool ones.

Are you enjoying Kettlebell Training and the infinite kettlebell exercises that are possible? Buy yourself a copy of the Kettlebell Exercise Encyclopedia. Are you just at the start of your journey and want to lay a solid kettlebell foundation to safely build upon? Check out our online kettlebell certification which is suitable for at-home users and trainers. For the best kettlebell workouts check out the Kettlebell Workouts And Challenges series.

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