T Nation

Power Snatches

Been doing power snatches on and off for almost a year.
For some reason I just can’t seem to add weight to the bar when doing them.
I used to do a empty bar, then progressed to adding 22 .lbs on each side, but realized when I add that kind of weight my form is shot to hell and I end up pushing the weight over my head instead of pulling it over my head.
So now I’m back to an empty bar and realy working on form and speed.

But damn… how long does it take to add weight to the bar.
I’m doing 2 warm-up sets and 4x8 worksets with 2 mins. rest.

Is it normal to slowly progress with weight?

Do you have access to lifting blocks? If you can manage it, try doing snatches off blocks. Add weight in small increments. Wehn you increase the weight…drop a bit further down underneath the bar than usual. Then as you get stronger with the new weight, the drop will become less and less. You can also try lower the height of the blocks over time also. And as you have been doing, keep working on bar speed…it is vital.

Power Snatches can be frustrating. Continue with your 4-5 sets but try cutting your reps back to 4-5. Your on track with your rest period, but it’s suggested that power lifts may require even more time between sets; even 3-4 minutes. With this in mind, you should feasably be able to add additional weight and get fully rested for your next set. Fatigue may be one of the reasons for your inability to complete each rep. Also, I will generally instruct a beginner to perform a Hang Snatch before a Power Snatch. The starting position for a Hang Snatch is the same for a Hang Clean w/ the bar right almost touching the top of your knee-caps and hips back, flat back, and shoulders in allignment with the barbell or just a little in front (w/ a Snatch grip of course). Try performing the hang snatch until you feel your form is perfect, then move on to the power snatch. If your attemptine Power exercises, you should be using training plates (10, 25lb. plates the same size as 45’s) to get you used to the level you’ll be lifting from. Make sure your using a olympic lifting bar as well. These have better bearings and more flex in the bar. Finally, don’t forget to shrug the hell out of the bar when you lift.

Have fun!

jvarela, CSCS

Your language hints at the problem: You should not be “pushing” OR “Pulling.” Instead, you should be “jumping” and “throwing.” Not literally of course, but you need to think speed, accelleration, not “lifting.” A good mental cue is “Jump that weight right to the top.” You should only feel the weight in your hands at the peak of your pull (when the bar is near your upper thighs) and at the very top? if you feel any weight in your hands as the bar is moving toward the top, you’re moving too slow.

Hope that helps…

It’s good to have good form. But its ok to let form slide a bit in order to increase your weights. As you get used to a heavier weight, your form for that weight will improve. I would go ahead and start adding weight. The key to anything is to never stop trying.