Snatch Mobility: Check the Most Effective Drills

Author: Sergii Putsov (20 years of Oly Lifting & Training experience)

Reviewed by: Oleksiy Torokhtiy (Olympian with 21 years of Oly Lifting experience)

Weightlifting requires a high level of mobility. A decent amount of muscular flexibility and joint mobility are also necessary for a stable and safe snatch execution, in addition to a high level of strength and coordination. Poor mobility will limit progress if weightlifters are unable to move in particular ways.

The Olympic snatch is a total body movement that requires superb technique, mental resilience, and physical power. You will benefit from working to increase your snatch mobility both for the lift itself and for other aspects of Olympic weightlifting training.

snatch mobility

Why Is Mobility Important For Snatch?

As you are undoubtedly aware, snatch makes the majority of an athlete's mobility problems obvious. The snatch's receiving stance places tremendous demands on both flexibility and stability. So, you definitely need to increase your mobility if you want to get better in Olympic snatch!

You will benefit from working to increase your snatch mobility in both the lift itself and other aspects of your training. This will help to:

  • avoid injuries;
  • strengthen movement skills;
  • increase ROM of various exercises;
  • improve performance;
  • enhance overall health.

You should be able to move your body efficiently to do the snatch since it involves so many different muscles, from your feet to your shoulders.

To learn how to snatch you can take a look on my Snatch MasterClass - LINK

Having enormous military press or deadlift strength is useless if you are unable to maintain the bar during a catch in overhead position, for example, because you are too immobile. You will be unable to do snatch variations to your full ability without the required mobility.

About the Program

Our Overhead Mobility Program is a 6-week, 18-workout course that helps you permanently push past your mobility limitations and feel confident in your overhead stability.

Every week you’ll gain access to three workouts, each taking no more than 30 minutes to complete that can be done with basic gym equipment.

In total, there are over 60 unique exercises and 120 video tutorials to guide you through the course.

Additionally, there are 5 mobility tests at the beginning, middle, and end of the program designed to motivate you, track your progress and celebrate your results.

Who Is the Program For?

The Overhead Mobility Program is meant for ALL athlete levels - from beginners to competitive weightlifters.

However, it’s equally beneficial to the average person as well, even if they’re not actively training at the moment.

 Overhead Mobility Program

  • 60 unique exercises and 120 video tutorials;
  • 5 tests to check your mobility;
  • Short sessions up to 30 minutes;
  • LIFETIME access;
  • Mobile friendly design;

Try the first 3 workouts for FREE!

How To Improve Your Snatch Mobility?

People who struggle with overhead squats frequently keep trying in the hopes that one day they will become better. The majority of the time, they make a small improvement, like one would while learning a new action, only to suffer from injuries and bad mechanics that quickly resurface in more difficult moves like snatches. A systematic method that considers the essential joint motions, flexibility, and stability across each joint that composes the entire is important to address the mobility concerns for the overhead squat.

So how to stretch out snatch?

Let's take a look on the most effective exercises for the overhead mobility in snatch:

1. Prayer Stretch

Purpose: triceps, upper back and lat stretch.

Initial position: Bend your arm at the elbow, place the triceps on the support.

How to perform.

Your shoulders should be as low as they can go. To focus on thoracic spine mobility, be cautious to extend your upper back as you perform this exercise. Because this will become a lat stretch if you retain a slight arch in your back. By adapting the method of this mobility exercise to the regions where you are tight, you may make the most of your time.


Feel free to use this exercise during warmup or post workout stretching, hold this position for 20-40 sec

2. Deep Chest Opener

Purpose: chest muscles stretching and shoulder mobilization.

Initial position.

Take a quadrangle initial position, place wrist under the shoulder, knee under the hip joint and keep your spine straight. Place one hand behind your head.

How to perform.

Inhale and move your elbow aside & up, open chest, push with another arm against the floor. Exhale and move your arm under the supporting arm.


Feel free to use this exercise during warmup or post workout stretching. Perform 8-12 reps for each side up to 3 sets.

3. Rubber Band Spins

Purpose: upper body mobilization and muscles warmup.

Initial position.

Step on the rubber band with both feet and grab the rubber band with both hands.

How to perform.

Move your hands over the top back and forth with a comfortable tempo.


Feel free to use this exercise during warmup. Repeat for 10-12 reps up to 3 sets.

4. PVC Shoulders Circle Ups

Purpose: upper body mobilization and muscles warmup.

Initial position.

Take a PVC with a comfortable wide grip.

How to perform.

Move PVC back and forth in a circle through one side.


Feel free to use this exercise during warmup. Perform for 10-12 reps up to 3 sets.

5. PVC Raise

Purpose: upper back mobilization.

Initial position.

Laying on stomach, middle grip, core tight.

How to perform.

Hold your arms straight above the floor. Raise PVC up and squeeze shoulder blades. Work at a comfortable tempo.


Feel free to use this exercise during warmup or post workout. Repeat for 15-20 reps up to 3 sets. 

6. Snatch Sots Press

The drill was developed by Soviet world champion Viktor Sots & his trainer Pyotr Alaev. They never imagined this exercise would be one of the most well-known workouts when they created it more than 40 years ago. In actuality, it's a deep squat press behind the neck with a snatch grip. There are both power and technical versions. But in both situations, the same objective is sought to strengthen and enhance shoulder joint mobility as well as to improve the squat posture. All levels of athletes should incorporate this exercise into their training routine.

Purpose: specific overhead snatch mobility development.

Initial position.

Snatch catch position.

How to perform.

Press the bar/pvc from behind the neck to overhead position and hold it for 3 seconds. Avoid jerking movements, try to engage all upper body muscles and focus on deep and stable squat position.


Most athletes perform this exercise with an empty bar or light weight 6-10 reps 3-5 sets.

7. PVC Duck Walk


Integral body preparation for snatch exercises. In addition to warming up most of lower-body musculature, the duck walk also engages the core musculature.

Initial position.

Place feet with a hip-width. While maintaining your feet level on the ground, bend knees, push glutes back and drop your hips until thighs are parallel to the ground or as deep as you can sit comfortably. Maintain a high chest while raising your arms above in a snatch grip.

How to perform.

Step forward with the left foot first, then the right, keeping your body in a squat snatch overhead position or as deep as you can go. As you walk, make sure to maintain balance on your mid foot. Continue to advance in this way for the required amount of steps.


Most athletes perform this exercise with PVC for 8-12 reps 3-5 sets.

More effective exercises you will be able to find in my Overhead Mobility Program.


How Do You Open Shoulders For Snatch?

To prepare shoulders for snatching you must plant specific warm up before snatching. It can consist of 2-3 exercises with a rubber band or PVC to engage the upper body in all planes. You can perform these exercises in circle mode for 2-3 rounds to increase its efficiency.

How Do You Warm Up For A Snatch?

If you've ever snatched, you're aware that having movement issues may seriously affect how well and safely you can prepare for the Olympic snatch. In order to properly warm up before a snatch workout, the hips, shoulders and thoracic spine must be mobilized and activated through stretching as well as careful rotation of each joint to enhance range of motion.

Overhead Mobility Program


Definitely, mobility is a crucial component of Olympic weightlifting, especially in snatch. Poor mobility will limit progress if weightlifters are unable to move in certain ways. All athletes will benefit from working to increase snatch mobility in both the lift itself and for other aspects of training. What's your favorite snatch mobility drill? Do you think I left anything out? Let's discuss it in the comments!

Also read:

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With over 20 years in Olympic Weightlifting, our team does its best to provide the audience with ultimate support and meet the needs and requirements of advanced athletes and professional lifters, as well as people who strive to open new opportunities and develop their physical capabilities with us.

All products we select are primarily approved and tested by the Olympic Weightlifting Champion Oleksii Torokhtiy. Under his guidance, we provide honest and reasonable assessments of the products we review by checking their characteristics, packaging, design, comfort and durability features, and general product rating. We select products from only high-quality and trusted sports brands, thus vouching for their quality.

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Overhead Mobility Program

WBCL autor Sergii Putsov

Head of Sport Science, PhD

Experience: 20 years

Best Results: Snatch - 165 kg, 

C&J - 200 kg

Sergii is a professional weightlifter and National team member in the past. Competed in 94 kg w/c, won multiple medals on national competitions.

Nowadays Sergii is responsible for designing training programs, writing blog articles, doing live commentary of international weightlifting competitions, running different sport & fitness educational seminars, including Olympic weightlifting together with Oleksiy Torokhtiy all around the globe.

Reviewed by: Oleksiy Torokhtiy

Olympic Weightlifting Champion

Experience: 21 years

Best Results: Snatch – 200 kg,

C&J - 240 kg

My name is Oleksiy Torokhtiy. I am a professional athlete with 20 years of experience in Olympic weightlifting. I have won multiple European, and World titles and have taken part in two Olympic Games (Beijing 2008, London 2012).

After finishing my career, I have committed myself to coach, and as of 2022, I’ve hosted 200+ weightlifting seminars all over the globe. I’m the founder of an international sportswear and accessories brand, Warm Body Cold Mind (my motto), author, and creator of a series of training programs and eBooks.

If you have any questions/suggestions/any other inquiry, you can reach out to us via email -

This article was written by our qualified author and proofread by expert with proven experience. When writing the article we use our expertise and data from open sources with strong reputation, scientific or medical based. The list of references is provided at the end of the article.

Our team of authors and experts includes professional athletes (Olympians, winners of European and World titles) PhD in Sport Science, certified coaches, sports nutritionists, CSCP, physiotherapists and other. Read more about the team here, and more about how we test here.

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