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Shrugs: When Did Your Traps Take Off?


At what strength level did you guys see your trap development really take off?


My traps did not show development until i began shrugging around 405. Coincidentally, it was about this time that i also make the connection of Traps = Calves, that meaning you gotta beat em hard. So the sets became 15rep sets for as long i could go, starting at 135 and bumping progressively.


This. Training traps more than once a week also helped


I don't train trap directly, they just grow from everything...all back work, pin wheel curls for a while....they're one of my more noticable bodyparts.


Roughly speaking, when I was comfortably BB shrugging body weight for 10+ reps.


You guys all do high reps for shrugs?

When I reach the top weight that I can absolutely explode the rep (~425lb) I do 5 reps. By the end of the set I'm pretty dizzy and light headed.

But I do what akuma does, start at 135lb and work my way up.


Its a ROM thing for me.


My traps always grew easily, but they really started taking off when I started doing big ass drop sets of shrugs.

That, and before a year or so ago I never realized how important tucking the neck when shrugging is.


A problem I had was that my grip would start giving out when I got to a heavy weight. What I started doing was supersetting DB/BB shrugs with either facepulls or reverse machine fly's, my traps have really started making progress now.


Why not just use straps?


Rack pulls make my traps grow.. And I guess a bit of body language on pinwheel curls..

I never used shrugs..


I don't really do high reps. I set up a low-weight, shrug it 20 times, and work my way up until I can only get 5-6 reps, then add some straps and try to get some more reps. That's about 4-5 sets, sometimes even more. Occasionally I try that smith shrug thingy where the bar rests against your hamstring when I fell I have more energy.

I get little trap work from face-pulls and rows, so I have a shoulder/trap day right after back day. It's giving me pretty good results so far.


Ramp using low reps to a top load

Then do 2x 12+ rep drop sets...works a treat.

Frequency is pretty important I found; traps need a bit of frequency (hence why it's probably better to pair them with back or shoulders than deadlifts which may be done less frequently).

IMO, getting to a true 12 rep max on a heavy lift like shrugs is almost impossible without ramping.

BTW, Smith machine is great for shrugs.


Just to throw this out there.

I was in the gym and decided to do shoulder shrugs in the standing calf raise machine (where the pads sit on your shoulders) and it really hit my traps better than DB or BB shrugs ever have. There is something about the weight being on my shoulders forced me to really shrug. I hope I am coming across clear.


Are shrugs even necessary if you do heavy deadlifts and shitload of rows?


At about 16 weeks old, if I recall accurately


What do you think?

Look at your avatar closely before responding impulsively.


I try to not even shrug when I don't know the answer to a question...

My traps have always dominated my entire upper body (I know, here come the 'you have a tiny upper body' jokes) but I have done about 2 sets of shrugs in my life. Same with calf raises. I kind of wish I was blessed genetically with any other muscles. They now take over most lifts, and I feel them first.


what do you think?


What does ANYONE think? DOES everyone think? Ahh life and its mysteries...