A common beginner mistake in the snatch is failing to get the bar into the hip at the top of the pull, usually resulting in losing the bar forward.
What happens is that the bar gets to around mid-thigh and starts to swing away from the body. At the same time, the lifter is already jumping into the receiving position, before the pull has been properly finished.
This results in losing the bar forward in the snatch, or feeling like you are being pulled forward, even if you manage to wrestle the weight into position.
It’s a habit that will severely limit how much weight you can snatch!
The best cue I have found to help lifters to get the bar into the hip is to use the terms ‘stretch’ or ‘extend’.
I tell lifters to stretch up tall or make yourself as tall as possible.
I also tell lifters to try to hit your head on the ceiling.
What this is doing is encouraging the lifter to drive up for longer; to wait to jump under the bar until the body is at full stretch and vertical.
At this point, the bar will be right at the hip. If it’s not – your grip is the wrong width!
You can see all of this in action, as I coach one of my lifters in the video below to get the bar into the hip.
Losing the bar forward in the snatch – correction
Notice how, in the first rep (the ‘before’ rep), the lifter has to jump forward in order to receive the bar. This is because the bar is too far in front of him when it gets to the hip. He hasn’t fully extended at the top of the pull.
In the ‘after’ rep, the lifter is no longer jumping forward. The bar is going exactly where it needs to go – into the sweet spot!
Losing the bar forward in the snatch is a very common problem for beginners and this is a simple fix.