Whenever we think about lower body workouts, we always focus on training our butt, thighs, and our feet. But most of the time we tend to undermine one of the most important muscles of your body- the calf muscles. So, therefore, without further ado, let us look at the 5 Best calf exercises for mass.
Our calf muscles help in propelling our body forward with every step. These muscles not only absorb the total load of the body but also help in supporting the rest of our lower limbs. Unfortunately, the calf muscles are still one of the most under-trained muscles in the body and are mostly neglected when it comes to strength training.
You will be actually quite surprised when we roll out the benefits of calf strengthening exercises. Curious to know what we are talking about? Continue reading the article then as we share with you some of the best calf exercises at home and their advantages galore.
Benefits of calf strengthening exercises
Before we move any further into the article, let us first understand why fitness trainers insist on strengthening our calves muscles in the first place
- For people associated with intensive training, working out or are in any sort of profession which includes a lot of physical activities, having strong calved muscles helps in reducing the risk of injuries.
- Our calves muscles are one of the first muscle groups which react when our feet hit the ground. Thus, it helps in increasing mobility in the first place.
- The calves muscles consist of muscles like the gastrocnemius and soleus. Working these muscle groups help in strengthening the ankle range of motion thus proving to be extremely beneficial for athletes and gymnasts.
- Strengthening only the thighs and glutes neglecting the calf muscles can lead to forming muscle symmetry and also negatively impact your body structure.
- And lastly, shaped calves help in creating a desired aesthetic look. Showing off those toned calves can never be a bad idea after all!
5 Best calf exercises for mass
Now that we know the benefits of calf strengthening exercises, let us now look at some of the workouts that can help you to achieve so.
1. Single-leg heel raise
- Stand barefoot, putting your weight on the balls of your weight and keeping your heels hanging off a step. Hold onto a wall or a door frame for support.
- This movement will cause a stretch on your calf muscles.
- Now lift one leg completely off the ground and raise the heel of the other leg which is on the ground. Make sure that you provide a complete range of activities for the heel.
- Repeat the same movement on the other heel as well.
- Continue repeating the action for a total of 10 heel raises.
2. Jump squats
- Place your feet hip-distance apart.
- Now as you perform a simple squat, lower your body into the squat position. Put all of your body weight onto the balls and toes of your feet.
- Now as you reach your lowest point, propel yourself up and move upwards in the form of a jump.
- Land onto your feet and immediately lower yourself again in the squat position.
- Repeat the action 5 times.
- You can also add dumbbells to central control your balance.
3. Box jumps
- Place a box in front of you which should be of a height that is appropriate for your jumping.
- Now jump onto the box and then quickly land back on your feet.
- Repeat the exercises 9-10 times and you do not have to include dumbbells in the exercises.
4. Straight knee calf raises
- Pace your feet hip-distance apart. You should stand in front of a door or a wall for support.
- Now lift your heels as high as you can.
- Make sure that all of your weight is placed all over the toes evenly and the knees are straight.
- Hold the position for 10 seconds and then slowly come back to the ground.
- Repeat the movements for 3-5 minutes. You can also add weight or boost the speed for better results.
5. Seated calf raise
- Sit on a chair or a tool and place your toes on a step or an elevated ground with just your heels hanging off.
- Now place some weight on your knees.
- Lower your heels as much as you can, past down parallel and then slowly rise as high as possible.
- Keep on repeating the movements for at least 5 minutes.
Apart from the above-mentioned exercises, jumping ropes and hopping can also be extremely beneficial in strengthening your calf muscles too. You can start light and then slowly increase your pace, reps and variations.
Furthermore, taking part in calf-building sports can also be of great help too. Sports like basketball, tennis and soccer include a lot of movements that help in boosting the calves muscles to a great length.
You can also indulge in activities like cycling, running, walking and hiking to strengthen and tone calf muscles too.
Precautions to be taken while performing the exercises
There is no doubt that these exercises are extremely beneficial in helping in strengthening and boosting our calf muscles but there are certain preventive measures that should be kept in mind while doing the exercises
- Warm-up is an absolute must before the exercises as it will help in getting your blood flowing. Little walking or some light jog can do all the trick.
- As you begin to exercise, slowly and steadily move through the exercises. Do not put excessive strain on your calf muscles. If you feel any searing pain through your joints or muscles, stop doing the exercises immediately.
- Never start heavy training from the beginning itself. Start with light exercises and as your muscles start getting accustomed to the exercises, then increase the pace, weight and repetitions.
- It is an absolute must to consult with your medical provider before starting any exercise regime. If you suffer from any lower body pain or ailments, make sure that you are following every precautionary advice from your doctor before you start exercising.
Now there you go, everything you need to know about the best exercises for your calf muscles.
Now you know how important the calf muscles are for our body and how beneficial it would be if we strengthen and tone the muscles.
Therefore, go on, include these exercises in your exercise regime and bask in the magic that it shows. However, we do recommend you take proper precautionary measures while exercising.