The best exercises for the calf muscles and the features of calf workout

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In bodybuilding and fitness for decades, special attention has been paid to the development of calf muscles. Even a stereotype has formed that the calf condition determines the general level of athlete’s sports training. Moreover, this is one of those muscle groups that both men and women are actively working on. As practice shows, most people do exercises for the calf muscles incorrectly. As a result, sports calves remain as unattainable as before. In this article, we will consider not only the best exercises that are guaranteed to give an impressive result, but also the basic principles of muscle group training.

How to get big calves: features and tips

There are many myths and false stereotypes that literally flooded the field of fitness. It was they who led to a distorted understanding of most athletes on how to pump their calves. As a result, sports calves began to truly distinguish athletes from the crowd. The problem is not in genetics, not in any secrets, but only in the fact that calf exercises are done incorrectly. Therefore, forget that in caviar a special type of muscle fiber, which requires atypical training, is nothing more than myths that have no scientific justification. What should be calf muscle training? The answer is simple – the same as for any other muscle group. Men, for whom the volume, mass and strength of calves comes first, usually work out the muscles in a power mode. This implies training with weights of up to 70% of PWM in the latest sets and in a 10-12 repetition mode. For women who do not want large calves, but pay more attention to muscle relief, it is better to train in a multi-repetitive mode, correctly combining it with heavy power exercises. You also need to train to reduce calves, although girls with long legs set similar goals for themselves to further emphasize this feature. In order for your workouts to always give results, you need to remember a number of basic rules that will help you correctly prioritize and increase the effectiveness of exercises:

  • Both muscles (soleus and calf) need to be trained.


  • It is necessary to do both powerful strength and multi-repetition exercises.


  • Unlike other muscle groups, when working out calves, first you need to set multi-repetitive and aerobic movements. Only then you need to move on to power and hard sets.


  • If you train a muscle group on a day of legs, you need to put it after working on the quadriceps and biceps of the thigh.


  • It is enough to do 3-4 exercises for calves to fully load the muscle group.


  • You need to train calf no more than twice a week.

It is important to clarify that this muscle group consists of two muscles, the gastrocnemius and soleus. It is necessary not only to stretch both muscles, but also to do exercises with an emphasis on each of them. This is especially important for men, since up to ¾ of the total volume depends on the soleus muscle, for the load of which it is necessary to fulfill certain conditions.

Best calf exercises you can do in the gym

Consider the most effective exercises for working out calves. Basically, they are used for mass, that is, to strengthen and increase muscle. Most of them are universal and suitable for women and men.

Calf muscles exercises:

Calf raise: proper form and technique

This is one of the most standard and popular calf exercises you can do in the gym. It can be performed in different styles and adjusted to any goals and needs. For example, if you want to do exercises for muscle growth in order to increase calves in volume, then it is important to progress in weight. Try to ensure that the execution time of the approach, when the muscles are under load, is from 35 to 45 seconds, but no more. It is better for women to take the lighter weights. At the correct pace, there will be 15–20 reps in the set. The exercise is performed as follows:

  • Stand on any platform. Keep your back straight; your legs do not bend at the knees. Weight is held on straight arms.


  • Rise on toes as high as possible, keeping the body position without movement.


  • Slowly go down (you need to go down faster than go up).

It is important to consider that you do not need to go down to the starting position when the foot is in a horizontal position, but slightly lower (as much as flexibility allows). The better the stretch, the more effective the exercise.

The option in the simulator is less preferable, since other muscles are usually included in it and this partially reduces the load. For this reason, you can take more weight in the simulator. Nevertheless, as an alternative to alternating with regular lifts, the simulator is great. The only difference is that you have to concentrate the load on the calves, and also not strain your back and core.

Calf press: features, proper form

This is one of the best exercises where it is possible to exclude all other muscles from work and load only the calves. Moreover, it can and should be done in power mode, using moderate weight. To do this, use the simulator for leg presses, but with the difference that the block will have to be held on toes, and not on a full stop. It is very important to carefully do the exercise at first. Due to the fact that the block is held only on toes, there is a risk that the legs will slip, especially with shoes with slippery soles. Therefore, always use lateral clamps. The amplitude of movement in the exercise is small because you can set insurance quite high.

Soleus muscle exercises:

The soleus muscle as if pushes the calves of the legs. For her load, exercises should be performed with legs bent at the knee. Best for this are movements that are done while sitting.

Seated calf raise: features, proper form

Exercise is done in the simulator, which is almost always in the gym. The movement is performed in the form of a normal lifting of the socks in a sitting position. Nevertheless, it is important to consider the following nuances:

  • The housing must be motionless and in a locked position. The back is always straight, hands freely rest on weight (or on the arms).


  • You can not help yourself with your hands, back, and other muscles.


  • It is necessary to hold the support on toes, and not on half of the foot (if it is difficult to hold on toes, then do the exercise without shoes).

Best calf exercises for home workout

This category of movements can be done at home, in the park, even in the gym, if you need exercises for losing calf, which require multi-repetitive and intensive performance. 

Calf raise: proper form and technique

This is an analogue of an exercise that is done in the gym, but with the difference that extra weight is not used for it. All the rules and principles of implementation are not changed. The only difference is that without weight it is more difficult to provide the desired load, because the total number of repetitions will be greater. As a rule, it is optimal to make movement for 35–45 seconds, focusing not on the number of repetitions, but on time. The pace is quite fast, on average during this time you can do about 30–35 repetitions. If you want to get maximum efficiency and return, then you need to do the exercise to failure. Three sets will be enough. Confirmation of proper performance will be a strong burning sensation in the calves.

Donkey calf raise to build bigger calf muscle

This is a classic exercise from strength gymnastics and is almost the only option in which you can provide an incredible load of calves outside the gym. It can even be done at home, but will require a partner. The bottom line is as simple as possible:

  • It is necessary to stand near the support and tilt the case forward. The back is straight, at the knees a minimum bend.


  • Then, a partner who fixes himself sits on the lower back (it is important that the partner is firmly fixed and allows you to maintain balance).


  • Rise on your toes, performing standard movement for calves.

It is important not to hunch your back in this exercise, otherwise, the load on the calves will be much less. The partner should sit in the lower back and pelvis, so as not to drag you forward.

Rope jumping for calves definition

This exercise is one of the few types of cardio load that is suitable for improving calf tone. Due to the nature of the lifts, the calves will receive a good load, and because of the long time under load (usually jumping takes at least a minute), you can actively work out not only calves but also almost all the muscles of the body.

Also, do not forget that caviar needs a good stretch, because we stretch the muscles before training and after exercise.


It is important to understand that games love a versatile load, so you need to add variety to your workouts as often as possible. Do stretching exercises of the calf muscles, perform strength and multi-repetitive movements. Try to alternate the exercises so that at the end of the session your calves burn with fire, which will be the best confirmation of a good workout. It is also worth noting that beginners and those who took long breaks in training can experience a standard cramp. We want to recommend you brilliant anabolic steroids shop called with legit products and worldwide shipping. In this case, with muscle hypertonicity, you need to interrupt the exercise and stretch the muscles as much as possible. To do this, pull on your socks. If the cramp does not go away, then you can pierce the place (where the pain is concentrated) with a needle, if there is one at hand. This reaction is usually associated with weak muscles and rapid fatigue, after which hypertonicity simply reduces the muscles and manifests itself. In rare cases, the seizure is associated with a lack of certain trace elements in the body, but you will have to consult a doctor with similar problems.




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