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Reviewing Current Knowledge in Snatch Performance and Technique: The Need for Future Directions in Applied Research

Ho, Lester K.W.1,2; Lorenzen, Christian1,2; Wilson, Cameron J.1,2; Saunders, John E.1,2; Williams, Morgan D.2,3

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: February 2014 - Volume 28 - Issue 2 - p 574–586
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31829c0bf8
Brief Review

Ho, LKW, Lorenzen, C, Wilson, CJ, Saunders, JE, and Williams, MD. Reviewing current knowledge in snatch performance and technique: The need for future directions in applied research. J Strength Cond Res 28(2): 574–586, 2014—This is a review of current research trends in weightlifting literature relating to the understanding of technique and its role in successful snatch performance. Reference to the world records in the snatch from the 1960s onwards indicates little progress across all weight categories. With such mediocre advances in performance at the International level, there is a need to better understand how snatch technique can improve performance even if only by a small margin. Methods of data acquisition for technical analysis of the snatch have involved mostly 2-dimensional barbell and joint kinematics. Although key variables which play a role in the successful outcome of a snatch lift have been heavily investigated, few studies have combined variables relating both the barbell and the weightlifter in their analyses. This suggests the need for a more detailed approach integrating both barbell-related and weightlifter-related data to enhance understanding of the mechanics of a successful lift. Currently, with the aid of technical advances in motion analysis, data acquisition, and methods of analysis, a more accurate representation of the movement can be provided. Better ways of understanding the key characteristics of technique in the snatch could provide the opportunity for more effective individualized feedback from the coach to the athlete, which should in turn lead to improved performance in competition.

1School of Exercise Science, ACU, Melbourne, Australia;

2Centre of Physical Activity Across the Lifespan, ACU, Melbourne, Australia; and

3Department of Science and Sport, Faculty of Health, Sport and Science, University of South Wales, Wales, United Kingdom

Address correspondence to Lester K.W. Ho,

Copyright © 2014 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.