Most people dread and struggle with the position of the shoulder in the overhead squat or the snatch. We hear people talking about rotating the shoulders to set the correct position. To us, we want to change that conversation because it focuses on the wrong things.
Rather than discussing which way the shoulder needs to rotate, we want to talk about how to build the best support structure for the barbell. The most common mistake we see is an athlete shrugging their shoulders up when trying to support the bar. This is a fault because it will put the load on the traps and not distributed throughout the entire back and posterior chain.
The conversation needs to be more about how the lats and the teres major need to support the weight along with the rest of the upper back. Yes, we want to be actively pushing against the bar, but not to the point we change the load distribution. Finally we need to talk about the activation of the pec in the overhead position. This is often not spoken about in coaching, but the pecs are often the missing piece in the overhead support structure. We cue to break the bar and try to bring our hands together.
As you can see, the rotation of the shoulder is often a result of not supporting the bar correctly. When we begin to build the correct support structure, everything else falls into place.