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Exercise of the Week: Trap Bar Deadlift

Muscles Worked and Benefits: The trap bar deadlift is a full body pulling exercise, the primary muscles worked are the glutes, hamstrings, quads, erector spinae, traps and upper back. This is a great bang for your buck exercise as it’s a large compound lift that works many muscle groups. The trap bar deadlift, also known as the hex bar, is an easier variation than a conventional or sumo straight bar deadlift which makes it more accessible for both athletes and general population clients to perform. The design of the bar allows the weight of the bar to be closer to your center of mass than a straight bar variation. The handles also allow for a more upright torso position which requires less mobility and hamstring flexibility than a straight bar variation. The trap bar deadlift is a great lift to help increase both strength and power.

How to Perform: Stand in the center of the trap bar with feet hip width apart and toes facing forward. Hinge hips back and then bend knees to lower down until you can grip the handles of the bar, make sure you are gripping in the center. It’s okay if your knees come forward but make sure you are initiating the movement from your hips as we don’t want to perform a squat. After gripping the bar we want to “pull the slack out of the bar” by pulling up on the bar without actually lifting it off of the ground. You should feel your upper back and glutes and hamstrings engage at this point. After this step you want to think about pushing the floor away from you to stand up with the barbell. Your arms should not bend, think of them as hooks that are carrying the bar and you want to keep your upper back engaged throughout the entire movement. Reverse the movement by hinging at the hips and bending knees to return the bar down to the floor. Make sure you do not bounce the bar off of the floor and then repeat.

Be sure to check out our free 3 day a week exercise template! Click here to get access!

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