Why the Snatch?

I’ve heard over and over from folks in the community who ask why do we have to snatch? We all know there’s never going to be a moment in real life where I’m going to have to take an object from the floor and get it overhead in one swift motion. It’s rarely, if ever, going to happen. The whole point of CrossFit is to prepare you for real world physical challenges, so the snatch is missing the point completely, right? WRONG.

The point of the CrossFit program is to prepare you for any and every physical challenge that could possibly present itself in the real world. Sure, you may not every perform the snatch movement in your day-to-day, but that’s not the point. The ability to do a full squat snatch with anything above your bodyweight is no simple feat. If you can do that, I know A LOT about your physical capacity. The first thing it tells me is that you have a THOROUGH understanding of moving large objects from core to extremity. 

The core to extremity rule is a major characteristic of performing functional movements. It means you start off moving a large object with big, but slow, muscle groups: the hips and its surrounding musculature. The hips do not move fast, but they move quite a load. They then pass the weight off with a major force to the arms and legs which don’t move quite the same load, but have the ability to guide the object to the exact location it needs to be, really quickly. 

The next thing being able to do a full squat snatch tells me is you have full range of motion of the hips, knees and ankles. These three joints are the holy trinity of all things lower body malfunction. If you are missing range of motion in any of them, you will feel it in the other areas. 

Now, if you have a tremendous ability to move large loads effectively and you have full range of motion of your knees, hips, and ankles; do you think anyone need worry about you if you’re getting ready to move a sofa or go for a hike? Probably not. 

The last thing the capacity to perform a snatch tells me is you have the arsenal of pinpoint accuracy. Now, I’m sure you’re thinking – why is accuracy important? Well, you use it a lot more than you think. Driving a car requires accuracy. You better be accurate when backing out, parking or just flat out driving on the highway. Typing requires accuracy. If you aren’t accurate when you type then I’m sure many of you thank your lucky stars for autocorrect.  Your job probably requires you to be accurate, as well. The ability to do all these things stem from the same part of your brain. Being able to snatch is just one more feather in your cap of accuracy. 

The snatch movement may not show up in everyday life directly, but it shows up indirectly all the time. Work on the snatch. Develop the coordination (which we didn’t mention), accuracy, strength, power and flexibility required for it, and you’ll be a more formidable human being.


If you want to learn more about adding accuracy, strength, power, and flexibility to your life, schedule a time to talk with us HERE.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *