Core & Abs

Turkish Sit Ups Exercise

Turkish Sit Up Benefits:

  • Helps flatten abs and defines shoulders.
  • Works the mind-body connection for improved overall movement.

How to do Turkish Sit Ups:

NOTE: In order to reduce the risk of injury, this is the beginning movement pattern — technically a precursor to a Turkish Sit Up.

Start Position: Lie on your back. Bend your right knee and bring your heel close to your glute. Reach your right arm straight up toward the sky, over your shoulder. Extend your left arm straight on the ground, 45 degrees from your body.  Your left leg should be straight with your heel on the ground.

Movement: Press your left arm into the ground and sit up up pausing when your elbow is bent to 90 degrees, then pressing into your palm and extending your left arm straight, coming to a seat position with your chest up and core tight. Do not move your legs.

Return: Lower back down to your left elbow, then onto your back. Keep your right arm overhead and extended toward sky the entire time.  Switch sides.

Modification and Progression of a Turkish Sit Up:

  • To simplify the Turkish sit-up, come up only to your elbow, not to your hand.
  • To advance the Turkish sit-up, try out the Turkish Get Up.  This progression adds a leg movement to bring you all the way to standing.

Movement Tips:  

  • Engage your core muscles before you move. Keep your back straight and your legs on the ground as you come up.
  • Move slowly so you hit every part of the movement.
  • As you master the motion, you can eventually add an overhead weight.
  • Once you get to a raised position, ensure you’re not dropping to the ground, but rolling down in a controlled motion.


Our live, real-time coaching will motivate you through every rep. So download the app and we’ll have you perfecting your turkish sit ups in no time.