How to Develop the Trapezius With Dumbbells

Strengthen your traps to reduce risk of future injury.

Strengthen your traps to reduce risk of future injury.

Trapezius is not a specialist practicing the art of trapeze, nor is it a way to trap an exotic animal. It’s an often forgotten muscle in your back (forgotten, that is, if you’ve never had pain there). The muscle runs along your spine and into your shoulder and is responsible for many of the movements you make, including your neck. By strengthening your trapezius now, you can eliminate possible future injuries or pain.

Dumbbell Shrug

Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Hold a dumbbell in each hand at your sides, with your palms facing each other.

Raise your shoulders as high as you can.

Lower your shoulders back down.

Repeat 20 times.

Standing Dumbbell Upright Row

Hold a dumbbell in each hand at your sides. Your palms should be facing each other. Stand with your feet hip-width apart.

Move the dumbbells in front of you, so they are resting against your upper thighs.

Bend your elbows and lift the dumbbells to the height of your shoulders. Your elbows will go out to the sides as you lift the weights.

Lower the dumbbells back down.

Repeat 15 times.

Reverse Fly

Sit on a bench or chair with your knees bent 90 degrees and your feet flat on the floor. Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Bend your elbows slightly.

Lean forward.

Lift your arms out to your sides until the dumbbells are just past the height of your shoulders.

Lower the dumbbells back down. Repeat 15 times. If you have back problems, do the same exercise, but lying on your stomach on a bench.

Tip

  • Lift lighter weights at first, and slowly increase the weight as you feel comfortable; to build endurance keep the weight lower, but increase the number of repetitions by 10.

Warning

  • Talk to your doctor before starting any new exercises.
 

About the Author

Though constantly traveling the world, Julia Williams is based in Chicago and has been writing since 2006. Williams holds a Bachelor of Science in accounting. She is also a licensed fitness instructor, specializing in Pilates since 2003 and has written hundreds of articles on exercise and health.

Photo Credits

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