LEARN TO SNATCH - LESSON 3 - SNATCH PULL (HIGH BLOCKS) Learn The Snatch lift from U.S. Olympic & Team USA coach, Harvey Newton.Teaching the snatch is most easily accomplished in a top-down method. The first and easiest step is to perform a simple snatch high pull (not a full lift) from the so-called power position. The power position should occur at the end of the transition phase, before the explosive second pull. This simple movement allows a lifter to gain power with a balanced, vertical posture. Get into a starting position with the feet about shoulder width apart. Bend the ankles and knees, keeping the center of pressure on the feet toward, but not on, the toes. Seen from the side, the knees are forward of the toes. Grasp a light barbell (elevated on blocks) with a wide hook grip, elbows facing outward. Block height is adjusted so that, while the lower body is slightly flexed, the bar actually rests in the crease of the thigh and hip. Placement at this location also confirms the proper grip width for the snatch. The shoulders should be slightly in front of the bar. Using the lower body muscles only, the lifter quickly pushes the barbell upward, with the lifter rising on the toes. This is called a triple (ankles, knees, hips) extension position. The lifter contracts the trapezius muscles of the upper back in a shrugging motion at the top of this very short movement. Before momentum ends, the elbows flex and the bar is pulled as high as under the chin. It is important to keep the elbows over the bar as long as possible, do not let the elbows drift rearward. All of this happens in a very short period of time, so it may take a beginner several sessions before this becomes well executed. The lifter aims to momentarily remain vertical and balanced on the toes, and the bar under the chin, elbows pointed upward. This is NOT a position to achieve in the actual snatch, but here it demonstrates 1) adequate mobility in the shoulders and upper back and 2) perfect balance while the lifter’s area of base is quite small. This vertical action transfers well to the full snatch movement. Return the bar to the blocks to repeat for the desired number of repetitions. Beginners are advised to master this movement during initial sessions before moving on. A great video for competitive weightlifters, Crossfit participants and strength coaches.