Both the snatch and overhead squat are technical lifts that require a balance of power, stability, and mobility.
The snatch can help you develop power and speed, especially when it comes to hip explosiveness. Hip power translates well to almost any sport.
The overhead squat is a challenging exercise that requires shoulder and hip mobility. Practicing it over time with lighter weights can improve both of those aspects of your performance, as well as strengthen your core.
Combining these two movements will take you to the peak of athleticism as you must combine various qualities of movement to successfully complete a rep.
As with any technical lift, you want to make sure you have your form down before adding heavy loads. Here are some tips from Colleen Fotsch, Reebok trainer and CrossFit coach:
- Get a grip: The easiest way to decide where you should grip is to stand with the bar so that it is sitting at your hips at a dead hang. If the bar is resting on your thighs, that means your grip is too close. With regards to the overhead squat, the wider your grip is, the easier it will be.
- Keep it tight: Before lifting the bar, set your hips below your chest and keep a flat back. You don’t want to be loose and rounded nor do you want to be overarched. Keep the bar right against your shins to allow you to place more weight on your heels.
- Put your lats into it: As you lift the weight to your hips, you want to lead with the chest and maintain a flat back. Engage your lats to keep the bar close.
- It’s all in the hips: To drop the weight down in preparation for the snatch, hinge at the hips, keeping the shoulders back while still maintaining a flat back.
- Jump into it: The snatch begins with the legs, so you are going to accelerate the bar to the hips by jumping. Once contact is made at the hips, you pull the bar with your arms. The most important thing to think about on the pull is to keep the bar as close as possible to your body. “During the catch we want to think about punching the bar up towards the ceiling,” says Fotsch.
- Stand proud: Complete the snatch by standing up tall with the weight locked overhead and the hips open.
- Locked and loaded: To perform the overhead squat, think about pressing into the bar and keeping the core engaged with your weight on your heels. Lower down until your hip crease is below your knees. Come to a stand still keeping your abs braced and the bar extended overhead.