Originally Posted by Troy Archie
I'm also curious about snatch/clean assistant exercises. At what level should these be added in?
Is it; clean and snatch and fill in the weaknesses and movements via the assistant exercies
Or in reverse:
Learn the clean/snatch via the assistant exercies and put it all together in the complete form?
From my experience, both (but it may vary with other people). It depends on what assistance exercises you are referring to.
For the snatch, my coach started me off with a lot of the partial movements:
First, an RDL-type movement, but keeping everything above the knees. Then we progressed to that RDL movement coupled with a power snatch/squat snatch from the hang (think "Jump!!!"). Then snatches from just below the knees. Then later on the full lift from the floor. From time-to-time, maybe about after a couple months of completely flopping on the platform, he started prescribing assistance exercises (pulls, shrugs, etc)...but unlike before, these were more for strengthening rather than reenforcing proper positions I think. I should also mention that he had me doing squats, back extensions, abs and pullups from day one (well, at least I was supposed to be doing all those, haha)
You're starting Oly lifting a lot stronger than I started (I think my max front squat was like 135 pounds and my backsquat was nonexistent). And currently, your squat #s are pretty close to mine. Like John said, the snatch and the cleans coupled with squatting will really improve your strength. If your primary goal is increasing your snatch, clean, and jerk numbers, keep in mind that the squats should be viewed as an assistance exercise. If your squat #s are very disproportionate to your clean/snatch #s, then you may want to think about shifting the focus of your training to more repetitions with the actual lifts and assistance exercises to address areas where you might be deficient (e.g., bar trajectory, early arm bend, lack of extension/explosiveness).
Just my 2 cents. I'm actually quite interested in what others may think.
btw, yeah, you may get frustrated often (I certainly did and still do), but that one good lift you hit has a way of making up for all those past misses!