Struggling With Your Snatch? Here’s Why…

Invigorate Health and Performance, overhead squat

Do you look at your gym program, see snatch and go for a run instead?

Are you struggling to hit higher numbers with your snatch?

Constantly stuck getting out of the bottom of your lift?

Are you hurting your shoulders or back chasing that PR?

Let’s take a step back and think about it…

How many times in the past month have you overhead squatted?

That made you think didn’t it.



In most of our strength programs the overhead squat is criminally under prescribed, yet it forms the basis of our snatch.

Do you know see how this is a problem?


So, without adding hours to your training routine, let’s have a quick talk about how we can get you strong and stable in this position and help you hit that new snatch goal!


1. Start adding overhead squats into your warmup:

A great way to do this is by alternating the movements in the warmup while your weights are light. Make your first snatches power snatches, then move into two or three overhead squats. Continue this pattern until you are at your snatch starting weight, then move into the full movement. This gives you more time under tension in the overhead squat position and will improve your strength!


2. Spend some time in the bottom of your overhead squat position:

It is really important to be confident and strong in this base position. Can you stay stacked in this position? If not there is a reason we need you hanging out in the bottom of your overhead squat. It allows your body to adjust to this challenging position. Getting used to sitting here for 5-10 seconds while the weights are light can lead to better mobility, comfort and control when the weights are higher.


3. Breathing in the bottom:

Can you breathe while holding stiffness in your core at the bottom of your overhead squat? You should be able to, even if the breaths are only small. If you don’t have control of your breath here, you don’t have control of the position. Can you hold your core contraction while breathing? If you said no, we have some work to do.


4. Snatch grip squat press:

How is your strength pressing from the bottom of your squat? This exercise is a great way to increase your upper body strength. Once you are comfortable hanging out in the bottom of the squat try dropping the empty barbell onto your shoulders and doing a few presses. As this gets easier, add a little weight. This exercise helps your shoulders feel strong while in the bottom of the


Now just remember this is very general advice and is for the average person who IS NOT experiencing pain!

If you are experiencing pain while snatching, we would always recommend that you talk to a health care provider and your coach so we can help correct your form and prevent the risk of an injury.

If you feel like you need specific advice or coaching surrounding your snatch technique our physiotherapists would love to help you get back on track and hitting your targets.

Call us to make an appointment on (02) 4880 1622 or book online here (https://invigorate-health-and-performance.au1.cliniko.com/bookings).



Written by Anouska Symons (Physiotherapist)