Whenever you perform an exercise you should ask yourself "what is my goal with this exercise and am I meeting that goal?"
If your goal is to shrug better take notes on this episode! Or save it so you can perform it correctly at the gym. Shown on the left is a less effective way to strengthen the upper trapezius. Shown on the right is a much safer and more effective way to strengthen your upper traps.
❌ - Avoid excessive rounding of the spine, known as excessive kyphosis
❌ - Avoid bringing your head into extension as you go through this movement. If anything, try to maintain a slight chin tuck as this will help stabilize the upper traps a bit from their origin!
✅ - The upper trap is a retractor and upward rotator in addition to being a scapular elevator. Try adding a little squeeze in the shoulder blades!
✅ - Control the movement!
Watch the end of the video for my FAVORITE way to strengthen the upper traps! Keep your hands slightly apart -- Having slight shoulder abduction will maximize upper trapezius activation by putting it in a more optimal line of pull with the muscle fibers.