The power of Calve Muscles! Don’t neglect them!
Many people blame their lack of calf development on genetics when they should be putting the blame on themselves. Calves are probably the most neglected body part for anyone lifting weights!
Some times it’s not that people don’t train them at all it’s they don’t train them with enough weight, they don’t train them with enough RPE ( Rate of Perceived Exertion) or frequency. Sometimes it’s just that people don’t know how to train them.
Here I will cover the do’s and don’ts and list a wide variety of exercises on how to train them and get the most out of each workout.
Before we begin we need to get down the proper form for training calves. Form means everything in training calves more than any other body part. In order to achieve proper form you just go all the way up on your toes as high as possible and go all the way down as far as you can. I have seen all walks of forms! It is detrimental that proper form be used for each and every rep when training them.
Now that we have our form down let’s talk about the amount of weight that needs to be used. Arnold Schwarzenegger summarized that you should use a weight that is about two-times your bodyweight. I see all too often people using a weight that is half of what they weigh. Think about it like this, the reason calves are so hard to get growing is this, you walk and some time run on them every day so they are a very tough muscle group to start with. So in order to get them to grow you must force them into growth with a good heavy and controlled. weight. Like I said before, go as heavy as you can and still use proper form.
When training calves heavy a lot of people assume that it means they can cut back on the amount of reps they do. Calves for the most part respond well to high reps. I recommend people do 15–20 reps when training calves and if you want a really killer calve workout, do. 100-rep set. I never drop below 12 reps even when training them with the heaviest weight. If you can push yourself through the pain barrier and do 5 sets of 15–20 reps with a good heavy weight then your calves will start turning into melons!
Something that some people don’t know or they don’t realize the importance of is foot position. There are three different positions: toes pointed forward, pointed out and pointed in. Each position really hits a different head of the muscle and allows you to create a really well developed calf:
Toes pointed forward — This hits pretty much the entire calf muscle.
Toes pointed out — This really nails the inner part of the muscle, which gives the calves a wide look.
Toes pointed in — This one gets the outer part of the calf.
Stretching is key to good calf development. Stretch before training them for 2–3 min, stretch after each set and when you’re finished training them. Stretching is important for each body part but calves are a body part that a lot of people seem to neglect.
Here are a variety of calve exercise you can do:
Standing Calf Raises
Seated Calf Raises
One leg calf raises
Calf raises on the leg press
Standing raises with no weight
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