A Biomechanical Comparability of Kettlebell Snatch Kinds

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A Biomechanical Comparison of Kettlebell Snatch Styles

What lessons can we learn from world champions in a biomechanical comparison of different kettlebell snatch styles?

This article examines in depth the difference between kettlebell snatch styles. No, I'm not going to compare hardstyle to kettlebell, but instead I'm going to look at some of the different styles within the sport of kettlebell for myself.

Kettlebell sports

Kettlebell sports involve a variety of styles, although some are similar to hard style. I was fortunate enough to test a number of elite kettlebell lifts.

Even so, I chose these two because I think they are exemplary of what GS World Champion Arseny Zhernakov calls classic and modern. These athletes are not kidding; Both took more than 200 snapshots with a 32 kg kettlebell in 10 minutes!

Below are some illustrations of the kettlebell trajectory from the front view of these two athletes. You can see that Athlete A's path has more side to side movement.

In contrast, Athlete D appears to minimize side-to-side movement (just between the legs and just over the shoulder).. This contrast embodies the differences between these two styles. In my opinion, the classic was an adaptation of the barbell snatch technique (mainly moving through the sagittal plane).

Over time, people began to use the kettlebells, which increased mobility and allowed greater lateral movement.

In summary, classic and modern snatch styles have a distinct difference in their trajectory. The following figure shows the path of athletes A and D.

For more information on the kettlebell snatch trajectory, please refer to my article "Snatch trajectory of elite Girevoy athletes (kettlebell) and its effects on strength and conditioning training". "1

Classic versus modern KB snatches

The classic style of the kettlebell cunt is the approach of the two to a barbell cunt, in which both legs drive and brake the kettlebell together.

In contrast, the modern style features a somewhat asynchronous movement pattern, with strength increasing on one leg and decreasing on the other.

This movement is caused by shifting the body to counterbalance the kettlebell. As such, the kettlebell trajectory begins to move further to the side.

The following table shows each stage of the snatch and some of the differences:

phase Classic style Moxdern style
Fixation Legs that support the body weight and kettlebell of the lifter
Falling Shift backwards with both legs Shifts to the opposite leg (contralateral to the kettlebell)
Backswing During the backswing phase, there is an even slowdown in the strength of each leg During the backswing phase, there is a rapid slowdown in force from the ipsilateral side and the weight is a shift to that side
End of backswing At the end of the backswing there is a pause that allows for a moment of rest before the upward phase
Acceleration train (second train) Even acceleration of each leg The ipsilateral leg accelerates the kettlebell
Hand insertion (catch) The kettlebell becomes weightless when maneuvered onto the back of the wrist The weight is shifted onto the contralateral leg to support the body and then quickly moved back onto the ipsilateral leg to help catch
Fixation Legs that support the body weight and kettlebell of the lifter

In the graph below, you can see how the strength of each leg changes over the course of the repetition (the higher the line, the greater the strength).

The stick figures above the floor reaction force trail begin in fixation on the left. This phase is then followed by the drop phase, in which you recognize the differences within the styles. The line in the middle breaks up the downward and upward phases.

GRF snatch

The upper figure is Lifter A in classic style and the lower figure is Lifter B in modern style. I haven't given any numbers in the examples because these athletes have different body shapes and strength levels.

If you are interested in an in-depth reading of the force associated with the kettlebell snatch, see my article "External Kinetics of the Kettlebell Snatch in Amateur Lifters". 2

Below are graphics of my own classic and modern snapshots. I did this on the same day. I'm fine doing 200 reps on a 32kg snatch. However, I can do a 10 minute set with it.

Again, we need to recognize the ground reaction force as a unique signature and can almost see it.

My classic style kettlebell snatch::

A biomechanical comparison of the kettlebell snatch styles - fitness, fitness, strength and stamina, biomechanics, floor reaction force, mobility, kettlebell, kettlebell snatch, kettlebell clean, Girevoy sport, hard style, kettle bell training, KB swing, Snatches, barbell biking, sagittal plane

My modern kettlebell cunt::

A biomechanical comparison of the kettlebell snatch styles - fitness, fitness, strength and stamina, biomechanics, floor reaction force, mobility, kettlebell, kettlebell snatch, kettlebell clean, Girevoy sport, hard style, kettle bell training, KB swing, Snatches, barbell biking, sagittal plane

The graph below shows a comparison of left and right leg strength side by side, one line for each style. Interestingly, the floor reaction force for each style is very similar when I combine the force from each leg.

A biomechanical comparison of the kettlebell snatch styles - fitness, fitness, strength and stamina, biomechanics, floor reaction force, mobility, kettlebell, kettlebell snatch, kettlebell clean, Girevoy sport, hard style, kettle bell training, KB swing, Snatches, barbell biking, sagittal plane

It is difficult to make general recommendations (from force measurement data) about style. However, it is individual and you must use the safest technique that will optimize your performance.

It's important to remember that you're switching with one handGrip endurance is typically the limiting factor in kettlebell performance.

The trajectory is different

The big takeaway from this is that there is a difference in the evolution of modern and classic kettlebell sport styles. This difference can affect floor reaction force and weight transfer.

The modern style accelerates the kettlebell with one leg (possibly to rest the other leg up to the hand switch) while the classic uses both legs to accelerate the kettlebell (possibly half as much with each leg).

Both modern and classic kettlebell sport styles have their merits, and you can get great performance with either.

References

1. Ross, James A., Cameron J. Wilson, Justin WL Keogh, Kuok Wai Ho, and Christian Lorenzen. "Catch the trajectory of elite Girevoy (kettlebell) athletes and their impact on strength and conditioning training." Internationale Zeitschrift für Sportwissenschaft & Coaching 10, Nr. 2-3 (2015): 439 & ndash; 452.

2. Ross, James A., Justin WL Keogh, Cameron J. Wilson, and Christian Lorenzen. "External Kinetics of Kettlebell Abduction in Amateur Lifters." PeerJ 5 (2017): e3111.

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