The hex bar deadlift (aka “trap bar” deadlift) is an incredibly effective exercise that many people don’t do because it looks confusing.
In all truth, hex bar deadlifts have done a better job keeping me sober than AA ever could have.
Within a few months of doing about 4-6 sets twice per week (usually in the 4-7 rep range), I noticed that my legs and core were significantly stronger. I was no longer the guy who looked like he just lifted his upper body.
I felt more confident doing squats and other leg exercises. There was a synergy between deadlifts and other leg exercises. Within a few months, I fit better into my jeans. I wanted to go out and meet new people and be seen.
And alcohol had nothing to do with it.
I never thought I’d say it, but I actually look forward to legs day. These days, I get fired up every time I see a hex bar.
Unlike barbell deadlifts, which force your lower back to act like a crowbar, hex bar deadlifts center the weight and reduce strain on your lower back. As a result, you can lift more weight with a hex bar and better stimulate your muscles.
This exercise stimulates nearly every muscle in your body. You might feel winded after your first time trying it. Go for a few easy sets of 10 to master the movement.
A few things to remember when starting out with hex bar deadlifts:
- Keep your feet about shoulder width – a narrower stance will reduce your stability.
- Grab the center of the handles, lining your middle fingers up with your shins as you squat down to pick up the bar.
- Keep your back straight – You are lifting with your legs and glutes, not with your lower back.
- Keep your core tight throughout the movement.
- When you lift the bar, drive through your heels, maintaining good posture – don’t hunch your shoulders or drop your head.
Guys I’ve trained have almost unanimously commented on how much stronger they felt after only several weeks. And thanks to me, several women now swear by it as their favorite exercise for tightening their core and developing a stronger and rounder butt.
The common denominator for all of these clients is this: When I first showed them the exercise, they looked at me with a combination of confusion and fear – like I was from a different planet.
Once you get the movement down, don’t be afraid to lift heavy. Here’s a video to help you master the basic form: