Many people go to the gym each week, never really knowing which exercise works the correct muscle.
The trapezius also referred to as traps, are the large shoulder muscles at the back of the neck. In this article, I am going to give you six of the very best exercises to work your traps.
Four of the exercises will involve using resistance using either weights or weight machines whilst the other two are exercises you can do at home or practically anywhere.
Exercise 1: Forward Bend Rowing
Ideally, with this exercise you will use something about the size of a suitcase. If you can use a suitcase packed full of clothes, so it has some weight that is perfect.
STEP 1: Stand with your legs about shoulder length apart, bend forward by bending your knees but keeping your back completely straight. Place your hands either side of the suitcase and lift.
STEP 2: Only use your biceps and your back and then slowly lift the suitcase towards your chest. When you reach your chest hold the case there for about 10 seconds, and then slowly lower it back down to the starting position.
Exercise 2: Ball and Barbell Bounce
In addition to giving your traps a super workout this routine will also work your lower back and your lats.You will need an exercise ball and a pair of light dumbbells to do this exercise..
STEP 1: Pick up your dumbbells then lie face down on top of the exercise ball, bend your elbows and lift the weights upward.
STEP 2: Whilst keeping the weights level lift them up until you are pushing your shoulder blades together. After lifting all the way simply lower the dumbbells and repeat. My suggestion is to start off by doing 10 repetitions of this exercise and then increase the number as your confidence and stamina increase.
Exercise 3: Straight up Rowing
This exercise works your traps and gives your back a fantastic stretch.
STEP 1:Sit in a standard gym rowing machine, bend your knees slightly and then pull your elbows in tightly towards your torso. The key thing with this exercise is to pull the machines handles all the way in to your stomach on every single repetition.
This exercise, is fantastic for your pectorals and will build your traps quickly if done correctly each repetition.
Exercise 4: The Heavy Dumbbell Pinch
STEP 1: Start by raising your arms high above your head to stretch. Then lift two reasonably heavy dumbbells and hold them down at your sides.
STEP 2: Whilst holding the dumbbells lift them and try to raise your shoulders up towards your ears.
STEP 3: Hold your shoulders in that lifted position for 5 seconds then lower to your sides and repeat.
Exercise 5: Stand and Row
Like in exercise three, you will be using the rowing machine at your gym.
STEP 1: Stand straight and grab the handle then extend your arms straightout..Keep your back completely straight and bend at the knees, dropping to a squat position slowly.
STEP 2: Pull the rowing machine handle back slowly all the way to your chest. Stay upright whilst releasing the handle back towards the machine.
In the next article in the series, I will be covering the five best exercises for the triceps