|Stan Stanczyk Split Snatching|
Bill Starr wrote a nice article on the Split Snatch.
Even though you rarely see it performed nowadays, the split snatch will help you to develop “an extremely high degree of foot speed, timing, coordination, agility, balance and a large dose of courage”.
He goes into the history of the lift, why it is a useful movement and how to perform it correctly.
As he notes:
“The split snatch is one of those exercises that’s rather easy to learn yet hard to master”.
And in fact, back in the day good coaches were rare and so most athletes were self taught by trial and error. Even though it’s a complex movement you can learn it yourself.
“It’s all a matter of how bad you want it”
Up until the mid-forties, every competitive lifter used the split instead of the squat style, simply because the squat snatch had not been invented yet.
That was left to do for a teenage phenom out of Ohio called Pete George.
With Pete’s amazing success in the sport followed by another sensation, Dave Sheppard, using the squat-style snatch, nearly everyone starting out in the sport of Olympic lifting adopted the squat style. But there were still some excellent splitters breaking records on the national and international levels; Stan Stanczyk, Norb Schemansky, and Louis Riecke were all world record holders in the snatch.
Like all Olympic lifts, the split snatch has great carry overs to other sports. So
Instead of jumping up on boxes, do some heavy split snatches.
That will improve your leaping ability much faster. Rather than dancing through a pattern of chains to enhance foot speed and agility, snatch bodyweight or more. And all the while, you’re getting stronger.
So why not mix things up next workout session and give this move a try. I sure will.
If you need some cues, here is a video of Mark Rippetoe of Starting Strength explaining the Split Snatch.
Platform: The Split Snatch from stef bradford on Vimeo.
Chuck Ramsay says
Pete “The Boy Wonder” George was phenomenal, as was Dave Sheppard (and it was indeed a privilege for me, as a youth, to have met each of them). However, Pete George most assuredly did NOT “invent” the squat snatch. If memory of an old “Strength and Health” photo serves correctly, John Terlazzo was very nicely squat snatching 240 pounds as a 165 pound middleweight in 1939 (at the Senior Nationals), and another fellow was even squat snatching at the 1932 Senior Nationals (when Pete George was three years old). Some German lifters, including 1932 Olympic gold medalist Rudi Ismayr, also did a basic form of the squat snatch – as did John Grimek in the 1936 Olympics.