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-   -   Snatch and Squat critique (http://www.catalystathletics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=7002)

Brendan Sonnichsen 04-07-2013 11:46 AM

Snatch and Squat critique

I was wondering if I could get some critique on my snatch and squat form... I've had some SI joint issues the last couple years and am trying to build back up... squats have especially been problematic for me.


Squat - 205 - easy x 6

Snatch - 185

*** I think I shorted my hip extension here... I've got major soreness (bruising) right above my manhood from my last snatch workout... is this typical? I never used to have problems - but mind you I never used to be able to snatch > bodyweight...

Thanks for your time!

Greg Everett 04-07-2013 06:52 PM

Squat stance is definitely still too wide. Look at the bottom position - see how your feet are way outside your hips? You're twisting the knee and you won't be able to sit all the way into a full depth position.

Not a great angle for the snatch, but keep your weight a bit farther back over your feet in the pull and even open the hips slightly more at the top.

Bruising is either from allowing the bar to stay too far away from you before it contacts you when finishing the extension, or can be from it contacting with the hips still partially closed. Doing everything right, you still will do it occasionally.

Brendan Sonnichsen 04-09-2013 06:52 AM

Thanks Greg!

I'll aim for better angles next time. I usually shoot from the side, but wanted to see things from a different perspective this time. I really appreciate your feedback... Will aim for a tighter stance.

Brendan Sonnichsen 04-15-2013 08:28 AM

Ok, so I cleaned things up a bit, I think.

Here are a couple snatch videos... I notice that on the 200# I don't get the bar as deep into my hips and this is probably the main reason why I jump forward and catch the bar so high? For the 205# attempt though it looks to me like I get it deep enough into the hips, but then maybe I don't keep the bar in tight enough with my arms during the third pull.... Would love feedback again - it was really helpful last time!

The back squat tips were especially helpful. These felt really good, but just wanted to see if there was anymore feedback for me.


Javier Sanjuan 04-16-2013 04:23 AM


In short, I believe you're right about all three lifts (four videos).

In the first video (the 200-lb snatch), you didn't sweep the bar far enough into your hips before you extended vertically. As as result, you had that jump forward. Sweeping the bar back allows you to stay on your feet longer, which will keep you more connected with and the bar and transfer the energy you create with your legs to the bar more efficiently.

In your second video (the 205-lb snatch), you did sweep the bar farther back, but it can still go a little further. You initiated your second pull a fraction of a second too soon (it looked as though there was a slight forward jump there, too). I also feel that you could have saved the lift (like the first one) had you pulled yourself vigorously under the bar. You let the bar swing a little too out in front (a result of your early second pull and the bump on the upper thigh rather than in the hip). Still, keeping your lats flexed by continuously pressing your palms against that bar all the way through the high-and-out elbows phase of third pull will keep that bar very close. You also need to remember that the third pull -- the pull under the bar -- is just as active as your explosion up. You need to have a violent but controlled action.

The squats, in my eyes, look good. The only thing I would recommend is getting a little bounce out of the hole. If you want to work on that controlled movement, you can do pause squats, which will strengthen you out of the hole. However, with heavier weights, you're going to need to train the bounce in order to take advantage of the whip in the bar and help you change directions quickly (much like when you receive a clean).

I hope that wasn't too long or confusing. If it is, I'll be happy to clarify what I mentioned here.


Brendan Sonnichsen 04-18-2013 09:54 AM

Thanks Javier!

I definitely need to work on what you describe with keeping the bar in tight. When it comes to the third pull I wonder how much lacking internal rotation of my shoulders is restricting me. I did some work with 145# - hang snatches - the same day, and really struggled to keep it in tight.

Also... just read this by Greg... some words I've really got to take to heart!

"How do you fix all this? Very simple: Find your correct squat stance and use it for every squat you do, and when you squat, snatch and clean, always—I mean always—sit all the way in. If you’re trying to recover from a long period of bad habits, sit in the bottom of all snatches and overhead squats for 2-3 seconds before standing—and when I say the bottom, I meant the bottom. Pause back squats are a great exercise as well for strengthening the deepest part of the squat. It’s not that fun, but neither is missing lifts you should be making."

Brendan Sonnichsen 04-23-2013 04:21 AM

This week I worked on getting deeper in my landing and holding the bottom position. It looks slow to me, but any other advice?

Greg Everett 04-23-2013 10:02 AM

try to keep your feet connected to the ground a big longer as you finish the extension, and yes, you need to be more aggressive/fast with that finish and the change of direction at the top.

Brendan Sonnichsen 05-08-2013 10:54 AM

Feels like progress has stalled a bit on the snatch. What's the main thing I can do to improve my ability to receive the bar here? It seems if I freeze frame around 0:33 that I've got the bar right over the middle of my foot but then as I squat down everything collapses...

And the back squat critique helped a lot... here is a 20# PR heavy single... Thanks for the help... I'm still very hesitant with the squat as I've been hurt with it before, so I know there's room for improvement with using the bounce, etc.... any other advise?

Greg Everett 05-08-2013 03:28 PM

You move your knees and weight a little too far back as the bar moves past the knees and you're leaned over a bit too far at that point, which makes you rock forward as you finish the pull. That's why you're jumping forward.

You're also slowing down in the middle of the pull - keep the bar moving at constant speed or even accelerating slightly until you hit the gas for the final explosion.

Try jumping backward a half inch - I mean move your entire body and the bar, not just your feet.

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