5 Squat Alternatives to Build Muscle

Load Previous

Trap Bar Deadlift

Using a trap bar (that hexagonal monster over by the barbells) allows you to combine the movement of a knee-dominant squat with a hip-hinge, which helps build your posterior chain.

  • Get into position by pushing your hips back and down, keeping your chest up, and grabbing the handles.
  • Keep your upper back tight, chest up, and pull the weight off the floor by pushing your hips forward powerfully.
  • Squeeze the glutes hard at the top, making sure not to lean back and overextend at the top.
  • Reverse the motion under control and repeat. 

When to Use: If flexibility in your ankles is so poor that you find yourself falling forward in the squat even at shallow depth, this may be your only choice, since the setup is a bit easier. If that's your problem, that means you should be stretching a lot more, too.

When to Avoid: If you have low-back issues, spend some time really learning deadlift form. If you're unable to properly brace your core and keep a flat back, you could be putting yourself in jeopardy, even with a trap bar. Practice with low weight until you have it.

Back to Top