Top 10 curl bar exercises for traps

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Published: August 15, 2020

Are you in need of some good exercises for your trapezius muscles? Then what you need is a curl bar! Workouts using it will help you build your trapezius muscles with ease! And if you are unsure about what the best curl bar exercises for traps – then worry not! DubaiPT is here to share some helpful hints and tips with you! Read this article to find out more!

1. Preacher Curl

One of the basic exercises you will want to use is the preacher curl. It is great for your biceps – but it can help with traps too. However, during the preacher curl, the activation of your bicep will be at its maximum levels. The preacher bench makes this happen by relaxing other muscles, thus isolating only your bicep.

preacher curl
Preacher curls got its name from the unique bench shape.

You start by adjusting the height of the bench so that it is in direct contact with your armpits. You hold the barbell in the palms-up grip. The hands should be at shoulder width. The backs of your arms need to be firmly pressed against the equipment you are using for the curl. Then, just curl upwards until you are holing the barbell vertically. Make sure to also lower the barbell slowly – about 3 seconds. Repeat to create a rep.

2. Reverse Grip Curl

This is one of the best shoulder exercises for definition of your upper arm. This exercise is also great because it targets muscles that most bicep curls don’t – like your traps. Doing it is pretty simple. All you need to do is stand upright with feet and hands at the shoulder width.

Keep your elbows close to your sides, with your palms facing downward. Then, curl the bar upward while breathing out. it’s important to move only your forearms, and lift it as close as you can to it being vertical. Then, hold it there while squeezing your bicep, and slowly return it to the starting position as you take a breather. Repeat to make a rep.

3. Varied Grip Curl

Where you position your hands during your exercises will influence what part of the bicep you are working on. These are called heads, and there are two of them – the long and the short one. You will want them both to benefit from your exercise – and this is why you need to do the varied grip curl! This is because you can alternate your hand position when doing this exercise.

All you need to do is choose a particular type of curl. Then, with each new exercise, you will want to increase the width of your hold by 2 inches – starting with your hands being close and then moving outward as you go. You can also alternate the exercise by increasing the width of your grip after each rep within the same exercise, too!

4. Back and Forth Curl

In order to do back and forth curl – one of the best curl bar exercises for traps – you will need a partner – like a male or female bodybuilder personal trainer. One of you can set up the challenge and the other can do it – setting up the new challenge for the first person. You go back and forth until you cannot do it anymore. This will reap amazing benefits – but it’s not for amateurs!

a woman with a personal trainer
Make sure you do back and forth curls with a personal trainer!

The thing to note is that you will want to perform a set of curls until you fail – and not to reach a certain number. Then, you relax quickly while the other person tries to beat you.

5. Close Grip Curl

You will do this curl like you would do any curl bar exercises for traps. The only thing that differs is that you need to pin your elbows to your sides and keep your hands close – no more than 8 to 12 inches. Your feet should also be at shoulder width, while you grip the bar with palms up. Exhale as you rase until your forearms are touching your bicep, then flex it for a few seconds before returning the bar while inhaling.

6. Drop Set Curl

If you want to keep working out past your initial failure point, then you will want to do the drop set curl! Its main benefit is maxing out the potential growth you will achieve. All you need is to use 5-pound plates – load up the bar with what you think you can lift at most through 6 reps. Then, perform a set until you fail. Then, remove 1 plate and repeat the process. Keep removing until you reach the final set of plates.

7. Upright Rows

The curl bar in your gym has a unique shape. This allows you to do more than just your average curl! For example – you have the upright row! You start with the bar parallel to the floor. Keep your hands close together and grasp it overhand. It’s important to keep your shoulders back – as well as to raise the bar as high as you can. Then, you will hold it for a few seconds before returning it to the starting position. This way, you will activate your traps more than usual.

8. Overhead Triceps Extensions

This is a great curl bar exercise for traps, but also to help you to keep the saggy tricep area toned. This is why it’s popular with older age groups. Your feet should be at shoulder distance, while you are standing straight. Hold a close grip on the bar with your palms facing down. Lift the bar to your head, then press it overhead and hold a little. Afterward, carefully lower it behind your head, then raise until your arms are completely extended vertically. Return the bar behind your head and repeat it. Finally, it’s important to find a spotter for this exercise!

a woman with a spotter
You need a spotter for the overhead triceps extensions.

9. 21s

21s in this exercise refers to the number of reps per complete set. Each set will be made of 3 segments with 7 reps. You stand upright with hands at shoulder width and grasp the bar in the standard grip – elbows go at your sides. You move from the resting position to a 90-degree angle and then back 7 times. After that, from 90-degree to vertical and then back 7 times. Finally, from fully rest to vertical 7 times, and you have completed the exercise.

10. 100s

Similarly to the previous curl bar exercises for traps, you will 100 reps over 3 segments. Start with 40 percent of the standard weight you use for 6-8 reps. Start with 50 reps – and do it with an easy, steady pace. Rest for no more than 2 minutes, and then do 30 reps – again, with no rush. After another short rest, do 20 more reps. Repeat until you fail.

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