3 Backyard Barbell Lifts From Pat Vellner You Should Try

Pat Vellner shows off three heavy barbell lifts in his backyard. Here's how to try them at home.

CrossFit Games vet Pat Vellner has taken to his backyard this week to showcase a three lift barbell complex in the run-up to his Semifinals appearance in CrossFit Atlas Games. Building up to 255lbs, Vellner starts with snatch deadlift, followed by a hang squat snatch and an overhead squat.

An elite athlete like Vellner makes the 255lb complex look like a breeze, so if you want to challenge yourself and your lifting, here’s everything you need to know about each lift to hit your targets with confidence.

Watch Pat Vellner’s Backyard Barbell Lifts

Snatch Deadlift

The first lift Vellner hits in his latest Instagram post in a snatch deadlift. The difference between the snatch deadlift and a traditional deadlift is the grip on the bar. The wide griper means the athlete works more muscles in the upper back during the lift.

  • Begin with a wide snatch grip with the barbell placed on the platform.
  • The feet should be directly under the hips, with the feet turned out. Squat down to the bar, keeping the back in absolute extension with the head facing forward.
  • Initiate the movement by driving through the heels, raising the hips. The back angle should remain the same until the bar passes the knees.
  • At that point, drive your hips through the bar as you lay back.

Hang Squat Snatch

From this position (also known as the hang position), Vellner moves into a hang squat snatch. From the hang position, initiate the snatch by pushing against the floor with the legs first.

  • Drive the legs against the floor and extend the hips aggressively, keeping the bar in near to the body and bringing it into contact with the hips as you reach complete extension.
  • After extending, pick up and move your feet into your squat stance while pulling your elbows high and to the sides to move yourself down into a squat under the bar. Keep the bar and your body as close to each other as possible.
  • Punch straight up against the bar overhead as you sit into the squat, stabilize, and recover to a standing position with the bar overhead.

Overhead Squat

Now in the correct position for the overhead squat, Vellner continues into this movement.

Pat-VellnerSource: CrossFit Inc
Pat Vellner
  • With your feet shoulder width apart and the barbell above your head using the wide grip you started the complex with, brace your core to protect your lower back.
  • Keeping your torso upright, drop bend your knees and drop your hips a few inches down into the squat, keeping the barbell above your head.
  • From here, extend your knees and hips and drive the barbell up over your head, fully extending your arms.
  • Lock your elbows in place at the top at the top of the movement.
  • Return the barbell to the platform.

Pat Vellner regularly shares his workouts on his Instagram, which gives hungry athletes a taste of what it takes to reach elite level CrossFit and excel.

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