T Nation

One Arm Snatches


The one arm snatch is by far one of my favorite lifts. However I am curious as to there effectiveness on my overall strength and athleticism.

So my question to you of greater experience than myself is, do you find them to be effective, to what extent, and in what areas as being used as a tool to greater strength and power? Feel free to go in to detail on your theory. Any articles that come to mind on this exercise would be appreciated


hey buddy, ive been doing them for a while. Well anything done with one arm puts greter stress ont eh stabilizing muscles, the one arm snatch is great for developing shoulder strength / power depending on how you use it. So in turn increasing ur snatch, bench, log-press or any other shoulder movement which involves the shoulder

For an even harder alternative , try one arm barbell snatch. U will feel like ur forearms are going to die!!!


I will have to try the barbell snatch. Sounds like an effective exercise.


As far as a transfer to overall strength and athleticism, dont expect too much. For basically all olympic lifts there is zero transfer to sport. This isnt opinion, even though it is, but this has been proven in studies.

That being said, it probably is a great exercise for shoulder health. It takes a ton of proprioception to control weight like that. Also, I think its excellent for conditioning.

Really though, the most important variable of whether or not it is an effective exercise is how it works for you. If your weights go up on the one arm snatch, and your weights go up on your contest lifts, then it works. No matter what anyone on the internet says. haha.


It's a fun lift, I wouldn't give it much more than that. The DB snatch is pretty easy, I got up to 170 on that one pretty easy, can't find a heavier DB right now.

BB one arm is tougher. I got up to 60 or 70kg on that before I got sidetracked. If you are new to the olympic lifts, just focus on the two main lifts, they are hard enough to learn.

And I don't know how you can say the power clean is not an athletic movement. I'm a bit biased but the clean/jerk is one of the best tests of overall strength. Not much more basic stuff than picking up a weight an putting it over your head.