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The Best Kettlebell Trap Exercise

by
author image Jen Weir
Jen Weir writes for several websites, specializing in the health and fitness field. She holds a Bachelor of Science in exercise science from Montana State University, is an NSCA-certified strength and conditioning specialist and maintains a personal trainer certification from the American College of Sports Medicine.
The Best Kettlebell Trap Exercise
A kettlebell is sitting on a gym studio floor. Photo Credit InnerVisionPRO/iStock/Getty Images

Kettlebells are versatile pieces of exercise equipment that can be used to improve cardiovascular fitness, strengthen the entire body or target individual muscles. The types of kettlebell exercises are seemingly endless, but when it comes to working the traps, there are only a handful that fall under the "best" category.

Shrug It Up

The shrug is the quintessential kettlebell trap exercise. It allows you to isolate the traps with heavy weights, the most effective way to build muscle tissue. Stand with a kettlebell in each hand with your arms extended at your sides. Lift your shoulders as high as possible, pause at the top of the movement, then relax. Avoid rolling your shoulders forward or back during the exercise.

Sumo Lift It

The sumo high pull hits not only your traps, but the rest your shoulders as well, which can help develop a strong upper body. Stand with a kettlebell resting between your feet, which should be shoulder-width apart. Squat down over the kettlebell, grab it with both hands using an overhand grip, straighten your back, then look straight ahead. From here, straighten your legs and pull the kettlebell up toward your chin, lifting your elbows as high as possible. Lower back to the starting position.

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