Traps are a muscle group that just radiates power and strength.
Shrugs are one of the best ways to build traps, though there are other ways as well. Here are some tips...
1. Be sure to do your shrugs explosively. The traps respond best to powerful movements. Explode the weight up as high as you can, without using your legs to power the weight up.
2. If you find your grip giving out when doing barbell or dumbbell shrugs, try using the hack squat machine or the standing calf raise machine. Set the pads on your shoulders and instead of squatting or doing a calf raise, do a shrug.
3. To work the middle traps, do seated row shrugs. Sit on a seated row machine and instead of pulling the weight with your arms, shrug your shoulders backwards.
4. To work the lower traps, do pulldown shrugs. Sit in a pulldown machine with your arms holding the bar overhead. Without bending your arms and with your body vertical, shrug the bar DOWN using your shoulders only.
5. Other exercises that work the traps include power cleans, clean & press, and high pulls.
6. Loaded carries can also be a fantastic way to develop the traps. These can include Farmers Walks, Yoke Walks, overhead carries, shoulders carries, Zercher carries and more. The traps thrive on time under tension and carries are the best way to get that.
This picture was taken after I just finished doing a Yoke carry of 450 lbs for one mile (over a period of 90 minutes)...the results in the biggest trap pump I've ever gotten in my life.
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