For your traps
Best Exercise: Rack Deadlift
The Expert: Jason Ferruggia
Deadlifts from the floor are great, but rack deadlifts are more effective for building hulking traps. You don’t have to go around your knees in the eccentric (lowering) phase, so they’re less stressful to your body and thus easier to recover from, says Jason Ferruggia, owner of Renegade Strength & Conditioning.
What to do
Set the bar slightly above knee height (having the bar on mats, if available, is way better than pins). Keep a neutral spine and get down in position by pushing your hips back and compressing your hamstrings like loaded springs, says Ferruggia. “Don’t use a belt—use a double overhand grip [to prevent a potential biceps tear], and crush the bar in your hands.”
You don’t need to go heavy to make rack deadlifts effective. Start by using 80% of your one-rep max deadlift. “You can still get insanely strong and set new PRs with that,” says Ferruggia.
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