The trap bar deadlift is the king lift for keeping a healthy spine while pulling a stack of weight off the floor in a functional pattern. It checks all the boxes for health, strength training, and maintaining general badassery.
There are several reasons why it's superior to barbell pulls:
- You have no bar blocking your shins, which is a saving grace for longer-legged lifters, lifters with back problems, or lifters with mobility restrictions. This also allows the shins to migrate forward, allowing the hips to sit lower and the spine to remain more vertical when pulling. It also helps hit the quads harder.
- You're using a neutral grip. That means no mixed grip (which has a high risk of biceps tears) and a posture that more easily engages your upper back and keeps you closer to anatomical position. That's huge.
- You get to pull from a slightly higher point (at least when you go high-handle). Football and basketball players everywhere are rejoicing in the fact that they don't have to crumple their bodies into a deep pulling position, like when they use a barbell.
But most people already know all this. The true reason they won't make the switch is bro-based stubbornness, not because a barbell "works better for them." They think that it's not a true deadlift if you don't pull with a straight bar from the floor. Those are the same people who don't have long-term health, strength, and wellness in mind. Are you sure you want to be one of them?
Of course, if it gets too easy, just flip the bar and go low handle. Problem solved.