The Snatch can be one of the most frustrating lifts. If you haven’t spent a ton of time hammering technique you may have found that you might not miss a single lift one day and miss everything the next. Consistency is key when it comes to the Olympic lifts. Here are a few exercises that can improve technique and consistency in the Snatch.
Helps if: you lack overhead strength, you’re uncomfortable under heavy weight.
Unrack the weight as you would a back squat and move the hands to the same width as you would use for the Snatch. Push press the weight up and make sure the elbows are locked and pointing to the sides. The wrists should be extended position (think about a waiter holding a tray). As you squat continue to “press up” on the bar to remain in a stable position. Return to a standing position.
Helps if: you’re slow under the bar, have balance issues in the catch position, you’re uncomfortable under heavy weight.
Unrack the weight as you would a back squat and move the hands to the same width as you would use for the Snatch. Perform a dip and drive (as you would in a Jerk) while simultaneously pushing yourself under the weight as fast as possible. When pushing under the bar be sure to lock the elbows out and continue to press up against the bar. If the weight is light, ride the weight down into a full squat position. Return to a standing position.
Snatch High Pull
Helps if: you “loop” the bar around the body instead of keeping it close.
Set up in a Snatch position with the bar on the ground (or blocks). Perform a normal Snatch pull. When the body is in a fully extended position pull the elbows high and to the sides while keeping the bar close into the body. The bar should come to about chest height at the top of the pull. For this exercise to be effective it is imperative that the bar stays close to the body through the entire lift. Allowing the bar to travel outside the base of support can reinforce bad habits.
Toes Off Snatch
Helps if: you consistently jump forward as you catch, you don’t push through the heels during the pull.