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Old 03-03-2009, 08:41 PM   #1
Jeff Hendrix
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Overhead squat grip width

I cannot get a wide enough grip on OHSs without some pretty severe pain in the joint between my thumb and wrist. And it usually stays sore for a few days afterwards to boot. At my height (6'1" with long arms), I need my hands against the collars to get the desired 6-8" clearance from the top of my head. But a comfortable grip for me starts about 2-3" in from each collar, which is a considerable difference. I guess I'm mostly worried about how this will carry over to snatch performance, as I definitely need a collar-to-collar grip for them in order for the bar not to move when I lift my leg up (I think the 6-8" clearance from a video with Coach Burgener I think and this from Greg Everett's "Olympic Weightlifting").

Has anybody experienced soreness similar to this and found a way to "work it out," maybe by just practicing at that grip with lighter weights or stretching your thumb in some strange way, or should I submit to this narrower grip? I actually notice pain during heavy snatches as well, so the more desirable option would be to train it away if possible.
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Old 03-03-2009, 09:37 PM   #2
Dan Donche
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Re: Overhead squat grip width

An option might be to work the narrower grip and slowly inch it out to where you desire. If you work on passthroughs until your grip gets closer you should develop the shoulder flexibility needed to use this. Obviously the bar will have more distance to travel so it won't be as easy as with a wider grip, but look at it this way: more work capacity! I haven't seen that particular case with the soreness yet though.
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Old 03-03-2009, 09:47 PM   #3
Veronica Carpenter
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Re: Overhead squat grip width

If you've got the shoulder flexibility and are not looking to be the next Pirros Dimas, there's no reason not to adjust your grip narrower.
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Old 03-03-2009, 09:50 PM   #4
Jeff Hendrix
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Re: Overhead squat grip width

Won't that be a problem from the second pull of the snatch though if it is not meeting the crease between my hips and thighs?
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Old 03-03-2009, 10:43 PM   #5
Veronica Carpenter
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Re: Overhead squat grip width

Not really. Everyone's proportions are different anyway. Just focus on keeping the bar close enough to "brush your belly button" or as close as possible. As far as GPP goes, you should be more concerned with your shoulder flexibility to get into the bottom of an OHS.
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Old 03-05-2009, 12:17 PM   #6
Travis Rieber
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Re: Overhead squat grip width

I'm 6'4" and deal with the same issue. In the beginning, the discomfort was enough to make me worry, but over the months and years my wrists have loosened up. That may be all it takes is time and gritting your teeth for a while.
I've found that wrapping my wrists helps out significantly, but I wouldn't go so far as to recommend it because, for all I know, I may be doing more damage to my wrists by wrapping them.
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Old 03-05-2009, 01:59 PM   #7
Jeff Hendrix
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Re: Overhead squat grip width

Thanks for the input, Travis. I'll keep that in mind. I may try and do heavier weights at a narrower grip and do lighter, higher rep attempts at full width and see if the discomfort begins to lessen over time.
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