Coach JC’s Exercise of the Day: Suitcase Sit-Up

 Coach JC's Exercise of the Day: Suitcase Sit-Up

Fitness Expert Coach JC of, a Web site dedicated to empowering first responders to be fit for duty and fit for life, offers another exercise challenge. This FIT FOR DUTY, FIT FOR LIFE exercise of the day is the suitcase sit-up.

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The suitcase sit-up is a great exercise for developing core, abs, and hip strength and endurance. The suitcase sit-up can be performed as a bodyweight exercise or with a variation of different modalities for the advanced.


For a firefighter, it is absolutely vital that you have a strong core and abdominal area. Most of the movements you perform on and off the job require a transfer of energy from the upper body to lower body or vice-versa. The strength of your core can be a direct correlation on the strength output you can perform and a life-saver from an injury prevention perspective.

The suitcase sit up is one of many great core and hip builders for both strength and endurance. This exercise will help you to produce tremendous power and strength transfer of energy at a time of need while reducing the risk of injury as studies have shown the stronger your core is the less stress the lower lumbers of the back have to experience.


1. Lay fully extended on the ground.

2. Utilizing your abs and your hips crunch your upper body as you drive your knees to chest position like you are tucking your knees in.

3. Hold that position and slowly return to the start position and repeat.

Sets/Duration: Perform 3×5-30 reps depending on strength level and goal.

Coach JC’s Coaching Points

  • Focus on using your abs contracting hard to pull yourself up to the suitcase position.
  • Start with returning your feet to the ground and your body to a fully-extended position.

*There are many different variations for core and abdominal exercises. To see many of these variations to the step up go to the exercise library at, under resources and start with the knees to chest exercise.


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