Benefits of Behind the Back Shrugs
1. Builds muscle definition in the lower trapezius muscles, upper traps, and forearms
2. May help prevent shoulder injury from heavy lifting by strengthening the muscles that hold your shoulders together
3. Can be mixed with other exercises to increase the difficulty
Back shrugs are essential to the bodybuilding workout routine. They help develop your back muscles including your traps, upper, middle, and lower. Back shrugs should be included in every weightlifting workout to assist with shoulder strength and avoid injury during heavy lifting. To increase difficulty try adding weight or reps (repetitions) to the exercise.
Back Shrugs can be performed with barbells, dumbbells, cables, smith machines, and machines. Below is a how-to video on performing back shrugs with a barbell (using the overhand grip). Your feet should be shoulder-width apart and your knees slightly bent.
Keep your arms perfectly straight and lift the weight by pushing your shoulders up towards the ceiling and bending your arms. Keep a stable core throughout the exercise. Once you reach shoulder height, pause for a second before slowly lowering the weight down to the starting position.
Behind the back shrugs, muscles worked:
Behind the back, shrugs are a great exercise to strengthen and develop the trapezius muscles. The traps area is made up of three main muscles and behind the back, shrugs will work all three; The upper, middle, and lower trapezius. When doing this exercise concentrate on squeezing your shoulder blades together as you lift the bar up. This is more than just an isolation exercise, it also works the lats too so you get extra benefit from your shrugs.
Get some weight on a bar or use dumbbells and stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart facing forwards Grab the bar behind you using both hands with palms facing back and keep your arms straight Lift the bar straight up in front of you, pushing with your traps Squeeze your shoulder blades together at the top of the movement Hold for a moment and then slowly lower back down to start position
If you don’t have weights use resistance bands. Loop them behind your back and hold one end in each hand then lift the bands up. Hold for a moment then slowly lower them back down to start position.
Remember that this is not just an isolation exercise, it also works your lats so make sure you are squeezing your shoulder blades together at the top of each rep.
Don’t shrug your shoulders – Keep your arms straight throughout the movement and lift with your traps. To finish the exercise, hold for a second or two at the top then slowly lower back down to the start position.
Behind the back shrugs vs front:
I’ve heard a lot of people say that they do behind-the-back shrugs to work their traps better than front shrugs. I personally believe this is just an excuse for not doing another exercise.
The fact is, if your traps are stronger than your middle or lower traps then you probably won’t feel your middle or lower trapezius working very much in a front shrug.
You can also use behind-the-back shrugs to build up your middle traps through an isometric contraction. To do this perform the shrug exercise as explained above until you reach the top of the movement where your arms are straight and parallel with your thighs. At this point hold it for several seconds without letting your arms drop.
You can also do this exercise using just one arm to work your traps on both sides independently. The key here is the same as it is for any unilateral exercise, squeeze your shoulder blades together at the top of each rep to activate the muscle you are targeting.
Back shrugs workout:
back shrugs work your traps, but they also involve the upper and lower sections of your back. To get the most out of this exercise using an overhand grip on the bar with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. This will allow you to hit both your traps and lats with one movement.
The biggest mistake people make when performing behind-the-back shrugs is not getting their shoulders as high as they can on the concentric (lifting) phase. If you fully contract your traps and lats at the top, with your shoulder blades, pinched together then you will see a massive difference in size and strength.
Shrugs are one of those exercises that looks easy but can be very difficult if you don’t perform it correctly. Start light and make sure you are squeezing your shoulder blades together as hard as possible to maximize the contraction and also keep your arms straight throughout…
Shrug Behind The Back:
Lay a barbell on the ground behind you with a squat rack or another object in front of you to hold onto and prevent the bar from rolling. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and grasp the bar, palms facing behind you and arms straight; squeeze the bar as hard as possible and try to make it move up or down slightly by contracting your traps (not your biceps).
lift until your traps are fully contracted upward, then lower the barbell back down to the start, keeping your arms straight throughout.
Once you are able to lift more than 315lbs x 10 reps, start using bands with a lighter weight. Not only will they allow for greater resistance at the top of the movement where you are trying to squeeze your shoulder blades together but also provide some additional tension at the start of the movement where you are trying to stretch them apart.
Bands can also be a great way to overload your lower traps which may have been under-stimulated by other exercises. Make sure your hands are slightly wider than shoulder-width and take a false grip on the band, this is where your thumb is closest to the inside of your other fingers. Using this grip will prevent the band from slipping out of your hand.
reps for back shrugs workout should be kept fairly low, around 8-12 reps per set for a maximum of 3 sets. You can also add in 1 or 2 drop sets to further stimulate growth.”