What are some of the best exercises for the traps?


As far as training goes, most people trying to pack muscle onto their frames tend to neglect their traps and see trap training as a waste of time. A set of large and well-rounded traps however, can really add the finishing touches to any physique, which is why we’ll be looking at what your traps are, and some of the most effective exercises for really working them.

What are your traps?

Your traps, or Trapezius muscles, are the large and triangular shaped muscles that extend all the way over the back of your neck and deltoids, extending right down to the upper middle part of the back. As far as trap exercises go, people often focus on shrugs, but what they don’t realise, is that there are many different shrug exercises to choose from, including:

Barbell shrugs

Barbell shrugs are great for ensuring your build a symmetrical set of traps, as the bar helps keep the movement even, whereas some people can overcompensate on one side when using dumbbells.

Dumbbell Shrugs

Very similar to the barbell variety, dumbbell shrugs are also some of the best exercises for your traps.

Behind the back barbell shrugs

To really push yourself and target the front part of the traps, behind the back barbell shrugs are ideal. Instead of holding the bar in front of you, you hold it behind you, and perform the exercise in the exact same way.

EZ bar upright rows

EZ bar upright rows and great for working the traps, with the added bonus of, working the front deltoid in the process. Focus on form rather than weight with this exercise.

Calf machine shrugs

Although designed to work the calves, standing calf raise machines can also be used for shrugging in order to hit the traps. You simply adjust your footing slightly, place the pads on your shoulders, and use the machine to shrug.