Gym Shorts: The Snatch

New to the snatch (or full snatch or squat snatch) or looking for a quick technique tutorial? Learn correct form in one short video.

The Snatch

Gym Shorts videos provide short video demonstrations of correct form for various exercises.

Follow these steps:

  • Set Up:
    • Heels hip width apart
    • Bar over midfoot
    • Knees in line with toe angle
    • Straight arms
    • Back straight
    • Adjust grip width so bar connects with hip crease at the jump
  • Floor to the Jump:
    • Drag bar up legs
    • Arms straight
    • Forcefully extend hips & knees
    • Shoulders over bar as long as possible
    • Back angle remains constant until the bar passes the knee
    • Jump!
  • After the jump:
    • Thighs below parallel
    • Full squat
    • Lead up with chest
    • Lock out over midfoot
    • Punch up

The Movement

The snatch is an Olympic weightlifting exercise performed explosively that begins with the bar on the floor and ends with the bar locked out over your head as you stand tall.

Because of the quick nature of the lift and the deep overhead squat position in the rack or catch position, this lift is not for everyone. We recommend getting coached by a competent coach if you intend to seriously train the snatch or compete in a weightlifting meet.

The snatch begins with the bar on the floor. The lifter takes a wide grip to reduce the distance the bar has to travel and achieve a hang position around the hip crease.

The snatch has to be performed quickly, but beginners will need to begin more slowly off the floor to ensure form is at correct as possible. Drills can be performed to work on proper jump position, rack position, and timing.

The lifter jumps and drops down into a full overhead squat while simultaneously letting the arms bend and then rapidly straighten the elbows and wrist to catch the bar with elbows and wrists locked in place. The bar needs to be caught over the shoulders and midfoot.

Once the bar is caught, the lifter squats up into a full standing position with bar locked out over midfoot and shoulders. This is the ending position.


If the snatch is to be trained seriously, it must be practiced alongside strength training of slower lifts like squats, deadlifts, and other compound barbell lifts. This means high frequency to work on technique.

Snatches are programmed with lower rep sets (singles, doubles, triples) with a higher number of sets to increase training volume and stress.

For intermediate lifters with a coach or dedicated to diligently coaching themselves and you desire to add Olympic variants to your program or compete in a weightlifting meet, add the snatch to your program.

Click HERE to see the gym shorts on the power snatch and HERE to learn about programming the Olympic lifts.




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