Thread: Split Snatches.
View Single Post
Old 01-29-2007, 02:49 PM   #14
Greg Everett
Greg Everett's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,838

My argument against the split in general is pretty basic:

with the split photos above, yes, the hips are getting nearly as low as they would in a squat (but not quite as low). But then you've essentially got 1 leg to stand up with. Granted, your back leg is not entirely useless and you can shimmy your way up if necessary, but that of course then adds another balancing element to the problem. Also, notice in each of those photos that Dude is up on the toes of the front foot--necessary to achieve that depth without throwing the foot farther out front--which then further reduces the potential rising strength and adds more of a balance problem.

I'm not arguing that people can't lift huge loads with a split style--however, I would argue that the ones who can are few and far between. It takes greater leg speed to hit that position, and for most, who won't be hitting the depth pictured above, it takes a higher pull. The evolution of the sport from the split to squat style was not an accident.

Josh Everett is a good example of a guy who is both remarkably quick and has an extremely powerful pull. He said he chose to stick with the split because the flexibility limitations that prevented him from performing the squat style successfully appeared to be incorrectable. So in his case, the split allows him to lift more. However, I can't imagine that he wouldn't be capable of lifting even more were he able to achieve the flexibility for the squat style.

So of course this is a very individual matter--in each case, I would ask:

1. How much work are you willing to do to be able to squat?

2. Is your present inability to squat genuinely incorrectable to the necessary degree, or are you just impatient (understandable)?

3. What are your ultimate goals for the lifts--as a tool for conditioning, for general fitness, to lift as much as possible in the gym, or to be competitive on the local, national or international level?
Olympic Weightlifting: A Complete Guide for Athletes & Coaches - 3rd Edition Now Out

"Without a doubt the best book on the market about Olympic-style weightlifting." - Mike Burgener, USAW Senior International Coach

American Weightlifting: The Documentary
Catalyst Athletics
Performance Menu Journal
Greg Everett is offline   Reply With Quote