In this video filmed at a CrossFit Competitors Course at CrossFit Park City, Eric O’Connor and Chris Spealler show how to use the snatch in workouts that test speed and conditioning rather than just max strength and power.
The muscle-snatch technique is a great way to cycle reps quickly, and the bar path should still be very tight to the body. Loopy bar paths are inefficient and undesirable—just as they are in the full squat snatch performed on a platform. O’Connor also covers the return to the ground, which is where you can greatly increase the cycle time by actively pulling the bar down for touch-and-go reps.
If a muscle snatch is unavailable, the power snatch is the next best choice. You want to pull the bar as high as possible to eliminate the deeper squats in the receiving position, and if you can avoid having to reset your feet from landing position to pulling position, you’ll further increase speed.
With the full squat snatch and a light load, you just might want to consider not fully extending the hips on the pull. As strange as that might seem at first, remember that we are considering light loads, and fully extending might result in an over-pull that wastes a lot of time and energy. Similarly, if you can pull the rep with your feet already in the squat position, you’ll save time.
Additional reading: Snatch Strategies for CrossFit Workouts and Competitions by Dave Castro, published June 2, 2010.