T Nation

Importance of a Lift You Suck At

I know “suck at” is a relitive term, but how important is it to do a lift at witch you cant lift a lot of weight. Example: I can power snatch more weight form the floor than from the hang, and I can ft squat a lot less than I can back squat, so should I lift more from the hang, and ft squat more?

Whether the “lift” itself is important may be questionable but it likely identifies a weakness that you need to work on.

In faith,

Coach Davies

I feel a little “funny” replying to a question that a pro already answered, but take my reply for what you will. And Coach, please correct any incorrect thoughts I have on the subject.(always want to learn more)

First, by taking the leg drive out of snatches, doing them hang style, is going to take away from the amount of weight used. You are relying more on upper body explosiveness rather than legs to start the movement.
Front squats are in the same category. They place a lesser load on the lower back, glutes ,and hips to some degree. Front squats target the quads more and in doing so take away from the total weight used.
If doing hang snatches and front squats significantly lowers the weights used ( say, less than 75-80% weight used on the "regular"exercises) I would say work on the weak points, or imbalances, to fix the problem.

It can be a host of things to be honest.

What you point out in the hang consideration might be a great pun actually. Are you you really saying you have “no” leg drive from the hang position because if so - that points out something extremely important. If that doesnt make sense, I constantly point out that my hang based lifts are generated from powerful hip and hamstring force but you also have to look at deeper into “how” you are generating movement.

With regards to the Squat question, again you may have shown something with hamstring strength or simply a technical variance re expertise of lift. More information is needed.

Let me know if I can help.

In faith,

Coach Davies

I just find lifts from the hang clunky.

If I improve my power snatch from the floor it will improve my power snatch from the hang and also from blocks/racks. Not so much the other way.

About the olympic lifts and legs:

I feel I should where a sticker when I am snatching and clean and jerking saying: I am lifting the bar only (well almost) with my legs. Floor, hang, blocks does not matter.

Most guys try and heave the bar with their lower backs and arms.

Flame me if you like, but I thought I read somewhere that theoretically one could and should be able to have equal numbers when comparing power snatches and hang snatches. Both use a powerful hip movement and the hang snatch is working in smaller range of motion.

This topic also brings up another question that I have: how important is the stomp when you finish a lift?

Will42–what are you training for? Why does it matter to you that you “suck at” these lifts? And what makes you think you suck at them? Here are some ideas to thinks about.

There are a lot of percentages to be thrown around when comparing lifts: for example, many coaches believe, F.Sq = 80-90% B.Sq.; P. Snatch = 90% Classic Snatch (Cl.Sn.); H.Sn. above knee = 80% Cl.Sn. So, it’s natural that your H.Sn. would be lower than your P.Sn. and your F.Sq. lower than your B.Sq. If the converse were true, at least regarding your Sn., then you’d have a problem–if you were/are a competitive lifter. If you’re not a competitive lifter, just enjoy lifting.

I compeat in strongman contests, just small time ones, but I will compete in a “real” contest when I get back to the states. I also play basketball, and mainly use oly lifts for improved athletic ablilty. So long story short, I think if I HSN more than i’ll do better in my athletic endevors, and currentally 135lbs isn’t acceptable.


What’s your bodyweight, your bodyfat %, height, 1RM F.Sq., 1RM B.Sq., 1RM Deadlift, 1RM P.Sn? Seems to me 135lbs is indeed very weak, unless of course you weigh 135lbs, then that’d be a bare minimum requirement for the P.Sn…

I feel it is important to improve on lifts you are not good at. This is really hard to do though as most lifters dislike their “sucky” lifts. BUT you must emphasize lifts that will help you reach your ultimate goals.

Another point can be made for using exercises just to switch it up. I know I get bored with certain exercises so I may throw safety bar squats in. Or just do a week of lunges and step-ups (these aren’t lifts I dislike, just ones that aren’t a priority.)