OCF Movement Academy: Snatch Prep

The snatch is the most complex lift in all of weightlifting. 

It takes speed, power, balance, coordination, strength, agility, mobility and just about everything a body is capable of all in one lift. 

What is interesting about the snatch, although it originates from pulling from the floor and catching in an overhead squat, you can break it down in positions and pieces to help reinforce good mechanics and positions. 

Here is what to do on your next snatch day for a warm up. And Why 

Behind Neck Snatch Grip Push Press 

The BNSGPP starts behind your head in a rack position, hands at snatch grip. From there you dip and drive like any push press and finish in a secure locked out position in a snatch grip. 

Why do this? 

The BNSGPP helps develop a strong and secure lockout.  When catching a barbell an inch forward or backward is the difference between making and missing a lift.  Focus on pressing up fast, locking out aggressively, and your wrist finishing in end range (palm up versus forward).

Overhead Squat. 

After your last BNSGPP keep the bar locked out and step out to your catching foot width.  From there press up against the bar, only going as deep as you can keep your posture, and a secure lock out.  There are no rules for depth in the snatch so don’t worry about getting no repped :).  

Posture and position is king. 

Why do this? 

The more stable, stronger, and comfortable you are in the OHS you will be dropping under to catch the bar.  If I know that I can overhead squat 200 pounds, I’ll have the confidence that I can catch anything there or below. 

Hip Snatch

The hip snatch, or also known as the power position, is the most vital of all positions to do properly. 

What is the Position? 

Bar at your hips, arms straight, knees slightly bent (only low enough for you to jump), proud chest, lats engaged, and shoulders slightly behind the bar. 

We want the shoulders behind the bar here to avoid any sort of banging or pushing the bar forward.  Everything about this position is there to get you to go straight “up”.

From there you jump extend and pull yourself into your catch position. 

Why do this?

Helps develop speed under the bar.

Helps develop the ability to keep the bar close. 

Snatch from the Above knee

The snatch from above the knee is one of the most pivotal parts of the snatch due to peak loading of the hamstrings as well as increasing bar speed up and through the hip. 

Start at the hip position and push your butt back until your barbell is at your knees. The goal here is to have the shoulders above or slightly over the bar.  Knee bend should be minimal. 

Your hamstrings should feel like they are working here.  Squeeze your middle and upper back. 

From there push through the floor, keep your shoulders over the bar until the last second and then you should arrive right in the hip position, time to jump and catch. 

Why do this?

Helps develop the ability to not only load into hamstrings, but keep tension as long as possible. 

Above the knee is a great position to teach increasing speed as you get up into hips. 

Snatch from Ground 

The original lift we were working on.  

Yep you finally made it here.

By now you should have gotten any fault from above worked out. 

All that’s left is to pull the bar off the ground. 

Our goal is to get to the exact positions we did above.  Not as easy when you’re moving upwards into them.

Focus on keeping your back tight, drive with legs off the floor, and shift knees back in order to get to a proper above knee position. 

Why do this? 

It is the full version of the lift so, practicing it when ready is always a plus. 

Develop strength pulling off the floor. 

Snatching can be one of the most fun lifts to do.

That is when it’s done well.

Take your time when you’re prepping to work out smaller faults so when you go to do the full lift you’re ready to rock! 

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