Movement Tuesday – Dumbbell Snatch

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It’s Movement Tuesday where we talk about a movement we’re doing tomorrow, WHY we’re doing it, and other fun facts and tips about it!

Movement: Dumbbell Snatch

Description: Start with the DB on the ground in between your feet. Use leg and hip drive to reach full extension of hips, knees, and ankles as you shrug, immediately followed by dropping underneath the DB to catch it at full arm extension overhead. Stand up to finish the movement at full arm, hip, and leg extension.

Primary Movement Pattern: 

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Physical Skills Developed: 


Tips, Tricks, and Fun Facts: If you were wondering why we train the DB snatch, take a look at all the physical skills that it develops… 7 out of 10!  That also puts it in the top tier of difficulty for newer athletes learning the movement pattern. The snatch requires the athlete to generate momentum with the legs and hips and then drop rapidly underneath the weight to catch it overhead.  Start light until you master the timing with the Hang DB Snatch, then progress to the full movement. 

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  • Feet slightly wider than hip width
  • Butt down, chest up, eyes forward
  • DB in between feet
  • Core engaged, back flat, non-working hand not touching your leg


  • Drive with legs and then hips to full hip, leg, and ankle extension (“jump”)
    • Arm is still straight, not bent
  • As you reach the top of your “jump,” initiate a high-pull movement with the arm (drive elbow up toward the sky) as you lift your feet off the ground to pull your body under the weight
  • As you finish the pull under the weight, punch your arm to full overhead extension to catch the DB overhead with fully extended arm
    • Legs are in a partial squat
  • Stand all the way up before controlling the weight back to the ground

Common faults:

  • Starting position with legs straight, butt high, chest low, eyes on the ground.  This removes leg drive from the movement, putting more strain on the lower back.
  • Starting position with DB out in front of feet. Starting with the weight further away from the body makes it harder to balance and also adds strain to the lower back.
  • Bending elbow too soon before reaching full extension (top of your “jump”).  The power in this movement comes from your legs and hips, not your arm, so keep your arm straight until it is time to pull your body underneath the weight. 

Have one of our coaches check your technique tomorrow!


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