The Hook Grip

Hook Grip: The Why & How

If you are not familiar with the hook grip or if you are one of those people who refuse to do it although your coaches tell you to all the time…. it is the BEST way to grip the bar when you are Snatching or Cleaning !


The hook grip can be tricky initially, especially for individuals with smaller hands, but regardless you need to make it work if you want to get better at the Olympic lifts. The reason every weightlifter in the world uses the hook grip is that when you’re accelerating a barbell as you do in the snatch and clean, you cannot maintain your grip without it.


With a hook grip, both your palms are facing in when you are holding the bar, then follow the steps below….

  1. Open your hands as wide as possible and try to push the barbell deep into the pocket of your palms.

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  1. Wrap your thumbs around the bar as far as you can, as if you were going to completely encircle the bar with your thumb.

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  1. Grip the barbell with your pinky and ring finger while your index finger and your middle finger are wrapped around your thumb as tightly as you can. (Remember, the thumb is wrapped around the bar, and it is kind of pointed toward your own pinky finger). To be clear, the index and middle finger are gripping so tightly and squeezing the thumb into the barbell that those two fingers essentially trap the thumb.

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