Calf Exercises

Try these Calf Exercises to turn those Wimpy Calves into Beastly Bulls


The calves can be a very frustrating muscle.

Sometimes all calf exercises seem useless as your calves just won't grow. To make matters worse, we all know someone that was blessed with full fledged bulls in place of calves, despite never spending time in the weight room. But fear not our baby-calved fellow lifters—we're here to help.

Shut up and let me skip to the exercises!

For Starters...

The calves are a very different muscle than most in the body. Here are a couple things to keep in mind during calf workouts and training.
  1. Your calves were built to move and bear the load of your heavy ass body all day.

  2. Nearly all weight training exercises for your calves involve raising the heel, the primary function of the calves. But your calves have been performing this primary function daily, since you could walk, with increasing body weight.

Following us?

These moral of the story is that the calves adapt to training easier than most muscles and recover quickly because they've always had to. So, if you're sprinkling in a few half-ass Calf Raises each week, you're probably not doing enough.

Focus on Compound Leg Exercises

For the best results, focus on our Best Leg Exercises, like Barbell Squats and Deadlifts instead of isolating your calves for multiple sets and reps. Our Best Leg Exercises, allow you to use more weight and secondarily target the calves.

Increasing these lifts will help you build a stronger foundation and overall strength and will be much more beneficial than all the Calf Raises in the world.

The Calf Exercises

Exercise
Name
Primary
Muscle(s)
Addl Equipment
Required
Calves Press on Leg Machine Calves Machine
Donkey Calf Raises Calves None; Partner
Rocking Standing Calf Raise Calves Barbell or Dumbbells
Seated Calf Raise Calves Machine
Seated One Leg Calf Raise Calves Dumbbells
Smith Machine Reverse Calf Raises Calves Machine
Standing Barbell Calf Raise Calves Barbell
Standing Calf Raises Calves Machine


Leg Exercises by Primary Muscle Trained

If you're through with calves but want to access more weight lifting exercises, head to our
Weight Training Exercises main page or link directly to all of our Leg Exercises.

In addition to our calf exercises, our Leg Exercises are broken down in to the following pages:

The Most Popular Leg Exercises:

Rather than viewing exercises by primary muscle, check out these popular Leg Exercises. Each page links to all of the variations of these popular lower body exercises.


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