T Nation

Cleans/Snatches Full vs. Power


So far, I have only done power cleans and power snatches, but I'm considering starting to do full. I've been doing power cleans/power snatches for a few years, always paying very close attention to form, so my form is good.

Anyway, I'm pretty weak out of the bottom of back/front squats, so I'm thinking full cleans and full snatches would be good for me in general. Is there anything specific that I really need to focus on form-wise? Any typical problems people have when going from the power to full style?


why would you change? Why full? If your asking about form, if you are dead set on doing the full versions, it might be wise to get the assistance of a coach for a session or 2. Personally, I wouldn't change


Most people have trouble(at first) getting their delts under the barbell. You can still throw it up like a power clean, but you have to fall under it before you can catch it, which leaves time for the bar to get off track(i e hitting you in the face/throat). Just go light for the first few sets.


I have difficulty catching with a full clean, but I can't think of anything in the weight room that is more fun than dropping underneath a loaded barbell into an overhead squat.


It would seem logical that full cleans would have a better effect on your reactivity out of the hole than power cleans...


You make it sound like I'm considering cheating on my wife. Well, like jtrinsey said, I think it could help my reactivity out of the hole. I wouldn't completely abandon the power versions, I just want to be able to do both types.


I think it's great that you're doing power cleans and snatches and want to do the full version. As I'm sure you're aware, by doing the full version you'll be able to use more weight...once you get over your weakness of getting out of the hole. Getting out of the hole is my specialty! Some things that may help you get out of the hole faster and stronger:

Practice the full movements with weight that your confident with. Move up as you feel comfortable.

Front squat and OH squat at least once a week. Go deep damnit! If you can't, then get flexible.

Snatch grip deadlifts.

Deadlift variations off of a box.

Snatch grip deads and dead variations off of a box force you to get low. These lifts will give you good power out of the hole.

Make sure that you are using good supliment exercises too, such as Glute ham raises (the best supliments IMO), SLDL's, hypers, and one of the best exercises for getting out of the hole....pistols and weighted pistols. You HAVE to go ass to grass in these, then explode up.

Practice these things, get creative, be safe and you'll improve full clean and snatch lifts!!!!!

I think some of the problems people have had switching from power to full or not just switching but including the full lifts are coordination. It's a new movement, front and overhead squats help. Try them from the hang also, I find it easier and it may be an easy way to transition to the full lift.

Any questions?


Thanks a lot for the advice. I already do most of those assistance exercises that you mentioned, so that's good.

I do lots of glute-ham raises, reverse hypers, and good mornings. I occasionally do snatch-grip deadlifts off a 4" platform. I also do front and overhead squats, but only to parallel at the hip joint or slightly below, so I need to start going lower. I do a lot of bulgarian split squats and lunges too. I recently started doing 1-armed barbell snatches as well, those are fun.

I can't do any pistols without holding onto something and using some upper body to help myself up. I think my flexibility is okay, I'm just too weak. Being able to do pistols was a goal of mine that I gradually lost sight of. Another exercise that I have trouble with is the high box step-up.

I think I'll start practicing the form for full cleans/snatches this week. Thanks again for your help.


It sounds like you're doing all of the right exercises to gain strength. That's good. Regarding the pistols: it's quite alright to hold onto something when doing these, but you have to go atg on these. Do enough assisted pistols and you'll be bangin' them out in no time...again, you have to go ass to grass with these pistols.

Regarding Hypers: you said that you do reverse hypers, cool. I was actually refering to hyperextensions. The reason why I recommend these so much is because a lot of people round their back when first switching to ass to grass from "parallel", by doing weighted hyperextensions and other lower back exercises (even reverse hypers are great...I just like the hyperextensions better, person pref.) you strengthen your lower back a lot and when doing the hypers you do them with the form that you should always keep, lower back arched and not rounded. Your lower back gets acustomed to this and then it gets easier to keep a tight arch and not round your back when going ass to grass...flexibility helps too.

Last thing, make sure those front squats and oh squats are ass 2 grass. You did say coming out of the hole was a weakness, destroy that weakness!!!

Is it possible to go ass to grass for you? I do know of some people that can't because of flexibility or mental barriers that keep them from dropping low.


I used to do pistols a lot, and yes, I always went ass-to-grass, but I also had to help lift myself up with the upper body.

I'll start going lower with the overheads and front squats.

I keep a tight arch in my back when doing good mornings, snatch-grip deadlifts, and all the other exercises where that's necessary, so I think I'll be all right with that.

Flexibility-wise, I think I'm okay. It's just that once I get really low, it's hard to come back up. So, yes I definitely want to get stronger in that area. Thanks.