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Snatch Final Extension Help


So I've been having problems with the snatch, for as long as I have been doing it. I have no coach, and its not really possible for the next few months. I was working on my first pull yesterday, and my first pull seems ok. The main issue for me is that I am not staying over the bar.

From what my friends and videos tell me, I am actually leaning back on the final extension, using an explosive hip bend instead of the legs to get the bar up. Essentially, I am using the hips to do all the work and the bar always ends in front. All my PR snatches have involved steps forward or the snatch catch involved a forward jump.

I have a few videos, I meant to take some yesterday, but I was pressed for time. I have been watching the Cal Strength videos, but when I see the "snatch second pull" video, I just get confused, because it seems to validate what I am doing.

Most recent:

Hang Snatches with 60

I have plenty of clean and jerk videos, but my clean is much better. I don't have the same issues, despite the fact that I know the motion is more or less the same.

Thanks in advance for any tips, drills, cues to do!


1st video

Proper setup. Your stance looks wide and I would flare out your knees to the point where it touches your arms.
Notice how much faster you drop under the bar with the hangs then from the floor. You need to pull yourself under that bar and not just float down. Your also landing wide so that's either your flexibility needs work or you need to do some foot transition drills. Wherever your feet land you should be able to squat comfortably down below parallel.

On your hang cleans when you dip your putting all your weight on your balls/toes of feet causing the bar to be more forward during the pull which leads to you jumping forward to catch it.


Its hard to tell. Try focusing on staying on your heels and more on fully extending the knee. I also used to do these(the 60 hang snatches) without using the momentum from going down. just lowered the bar slightly and then focused on the pull so that its less complicated.

I'd also try doing(with less weight maybe) 1 rep just the pull then 1 rep the full hang snatch. You don't have to be as quick as possible. Try to get a feel for that explosion and see when you do it right(not jumping forward and bar not going forward)

I think your arms could also be too tight.


Thanks for the tips guys, I will try those things out on Friday.

@Lordstrom, when you say tight arms, do you mean lack of flexibility in the shoulder joint? Or just flexed? Or something else?

I did notice I was landing wide, I don't always, but I don't have any other videos of it. I will keep working at dropping with knees and not with splitting the legs, as well as the other things you guys said.


You need to stay over the more on the hang Snatches mate...you just bend your bar knees and stay upright, lean over the bar in the start of the 2nd pull position mate. I've never seen anyone do it your way...if you don't really finish you will have to go forwards which you do in all 3 of your hang snatches.

The first at 90 is better. You go forwards because your receive position isn't deep, so your trunk is tilted forwards.

Get a video of you doing OHS with just the bar, then 40, 50, 60kg just for 2reps.

The 90 looks good apart from the slow turn over imo.

I go forwards in about 1000% of my PB Snatches LOL. I don't when it's light. This is due to it being slightly forwards and I just need to get up.

Look at how you take the bar off the floor, brace harder with your chest so maintain the angle, your hips come up just a tad too fast. Look at the hang video immediately off the floor you leg your chest sag and your hip to shoulder angle collapses completely. Your back is nearly horizontal! Look at the video. You either need to just focus on it or do more hamstring work (GHR, romanian deadlifts).

But your not bad at all. Just iron out these few issues.

Get a video of you doing some bar work. I think EVERYONE should have a video of them doing some bar work. I want to see how fast you can shift the bar and how fast you can get under it. The faster this is the better your max weights will be.



yeah flexed


@Lordstrom: yeah, I was noticing that too. I pressed one out beforehand, probably because of that.

@Koing: Thanks for the tips. I think the reason no one does it this way is because it is inefficient as hell. I will make an overhead squat video either on Friday (tomorrow) or the next day, depending on how my thesis proposal editing goes, time-wise.

So back angle higher, but not straight up? Keep shoulders over the bar. Ok.

Not to blame anyone but myself, but I think the most confusing thing for me, with the snatch, was a post that Jon North put up a while back about hitting the bar with the hips. I obviously took what he said wrong, but until yesterday I thought I was supposed to hit the bar with the hips, which brought it forward, my reasoning being that I was just doing it wrong. This meant my back at the end was basically straight up, shoulders behind the bar, leaning back.

I was watching some Cal Strength videos and I think that I can't start the snatch in the style that Jon North does, I think his proportions are different than mine. However, Donny Shankle seems to be more of the same body type, and although he is much stronger of course, his start position and lifting positions are closer to what I think mine should be.

Caleb Ward, on the other hand, manages to sit down behind the bar at the start and remain on his balls of feet, something I have no flexibility for. Maybe if I didn't pull my groin twice I would have an easier time doing this. He also extends from a much more upright position, and I think if I look at him too much I will confuse myself.

edit: I will also get a video of some bar work.


Cloy I coach out of Supreme Sports in Rockville MD. If you have time to make it out there, we can set a session or two up to fix your issues.


That would be a great opportunity and I wish I could. However, I don't have a car on campus here (College Park), and I will be going on break in a week. If I happen to get a job around here for the summer I will most definitely keep that in mind. Also I may have a car next semester, hopefully.

Do you (or anyone else) know any coaches up in Massachusetts? I have look up some gyms, but I have no idea if any have good coaches and they are SO far away, I don't want to waste my time at a place with no coach, because I have all the equipment I need.


We're metro accessible (at Twinbrook) but its a haul that way. I dont know anyone personally in MA that I would recommend, but there are a couple of places up there to train at least. Someone asked that question a while ago:



I don't think you need to HIT the bar with your hips. The bar shouldn't hit the thigh during the clean nor the thigh or hips/pelvic area during the snatch, it should make slight contact. Keeping the back tight, arms loose, weight on heels and the bar close to the body should achieve this during the extension.

As for how to extend, how long to stay over the bar etc, I've heard all kinds of different things. Dan john talks a lot about getting that stretching feeling in your hamstrings(I've personally never felt it when doing oly lifts), in other words, staying for a long time over the bar, others say what I told you to try which is to start getting your torso vertical earlier during the pull(after the bar passes the knees).

Another one is the shrugging with the shoulders. Some are for it some against it. Same with raising on your toes(although the majority is against it, me included). I've also heard about right when you start the lift where your weight should be... some say midfoot some say heels(I go for heels)

I think in the end maybe its up to each lifter and his dimensions. Or maybe there is one best way to lift for all but I don't know. I'll personally just keep doing what I've found works best for me but I'll keep experimenting :wink:


Thanks for the tips, and Gq thanks for that link.

@lordstrom: I can't pop up onto the toes due to a recovering ankle sprain, so thats out. I don't shrug much. I want to try keeping over the bar more, and makin sure the bar stays close so its in the crease of the hips at the extension. I never feel anything in hamstrings, I don't think I use them much. Maybe staying over the bar more will use them more efficiently.

I want to try some stuff out asap


I'm sorry I can't remember where I read this... But I read somewhere that someone didn't like to use the coaching cue 'hit with the hips' - because he found that lifters tended to smash the bar horizontally (get a big arc in their bar path) when he told them to do that. He did agree that lightly hitting it with hips would in fact happen when you got the movement right, however. I think different coaching cues might well have a tendency to work for different people (so 'hit with the hips' might be just what some lifters need to hear).

I found that staying over the bar longer, getting the weight into my heels and, yeah, figuring out how hard to extend to lightly hit with the hips (though not thinking of it as such) sorts out my forwards bar path. Still figuring this, though... Will be very interested to hear what cues help you.


from the hang position i think the idea is to hinge from the hip (sit the butt back) rather than bending from the knee. dan john's Metabolic Drive article might help with that.


You can make contact with the bar without it coming away from you.

I tell my lifters to clatter the bar BUT TO ALSO KEEP FINISHING THE PULL. If the bar comes away it's a result of not finishing the pull properly. They let the bar come away from them = not good.

Some lifters will make a more concious effort to make contact then others Others it brushes. You pick what sort of lifter you are. I can't imagine snatching without smashing in to the bar. Less of an issue on the Cleans as my grip isn't that wide and my arms are a tad long so the bar is lower on my thighs.

IMO the bar has to make contact on the hips/ pelvic area for the Snatch, if it didn't you didn't keep the bar close enough to you. Same for the Clean. It has to make contact on the thighs, if it didn't you didn't keep it close enough.

Get a video with just the bar, it's the best way to gauge how you will lift with a lot of weight on the bar.

Coaching tips online is not the same as coaching in person. The coach can give more info and adjust accordingly.



Hopefully I will be able to get to the gym today, lots of proposal editing to complete before tonight, but I definitely want to make some videos.


Hopefully I will be able to get to the gym today, lots of proposal editing to complete before tonight, but I definitely want to make some videos.


Got into the gym today, tried out keeping the bar close to the body, staying over the bar. Immediately I knew that it was better. I wasn't good at it yet, but I didn't have to jump forward. Hell, I even almost missed one behind me (caught it though). Only got up to 80 kg today but got a video of some snatches at 50 kg.

I do notice that my back is almost horizontal on some of them, which I need to work on, but its a far cry from what I was doing before (almost vertical the entire time, bar wandering away from the legs).


Try doing what I suggested, raising the torso to vertical earlier; as soon as bar passes the knees.

This seems to be right before the final extension, you can't really use the quads much from this position since they are almost straight already. Raising the torso earlier will keep the bar closer to you and make you reach this position with the knees more bent. At least thats what it did for me!


This, quickly, is what I see. I'd rather have a 3/4 view of the 90kg snatch but..

  1. looks like your set-up is ok except a bit wide footed maybe (couldn't see everything but shoulders seemed to start vertically over the bar, where they should be.)
    2.the bar moves away from you right away whe it breaks the floor and you stay on your forefeet throughout, which leads to the bar being forward and you not getting full use of explsive hip extension.
  2. at the catch, bar is forward because of this above.

In the vid. of the hang snatch the bar starts going away from you immediately and loops around to the top, all of which is wrong. Again, you are doing what I call a jump to drive the bar and that always leads to the bar being forward, as yours is.

During hangs, like block work, the bar's first move should be diagonally inward, then up and slightly outward and, finally, back around inward at the top. The pull from anywhere below the launch point(point on the body from which the 2nd pull explosive accleration starts) should resemble a thin "S", coming towards you, then out away slightly starting at the launch and finally in. While many lifters in this country seem to start the bar from mid thigh and drive it away, this is simply wrong. Also, at the start of any hang or block work, the shoulders should start vertically over the bar, just as at the Set position and move forward horzontally of the bar as it starts inward at first and then back behind (these days)the bar near the end of 2nd pull extension. And, only shrug down, pulling yourself under the bar with your traps and arms.

Bodyweight distribution on the feet through these movement should be towards the rearfeet as the bar travels towards you at the start and to some degree, moves to the forefeet during the explosive 2nd pull. I tell athletes to get their heels back down at the catch as quickly as possible.

You might want to take a look at two youtube vids. I posted to get an idea of some of this. They are not going into the whole pull but the drills shown help give some people, I've been told, a better idea of how the bar should move and what the lifter should be trying to accomplish going into and finishing the 2nd pull. "Rock and Roll-Don McCauley and "The Dirty Dancing Drill-Don McCauley. Hope this helps. Good luck with your lifting.