For your calves
Best Exercise: Seated/Standing Calf Raise
The Expert: Brad Schoenfeld
The calves consist of the gastrocnemius and the soleus muscles. The gastroc gets worked by standing calf raises, and the soleus bears the brunt of the load during seated raises.“Optimal calf development requires bent-knee and straight-knee positions for maximal growth,” says Brad Schoenfeld, author of The M.A.X. Muscle Plan.
What to do
Avoid bouncing out of the bottom of your reps on either exercise. The calves are often tight due to walking and running, so holding the bottom of your reps for a second or two builds stretching into your workout and encourages more long-term growth.
There’s some evidence that turning the toes in during a standing calf raise will target the lateral head of the gastroc (it’s a two-headed muscle, just like the biceps), and that turning the toes out will target the medial gastroc. You can alternate your foot placement each set or dedicate one month to training the calves using one-foot position and then switching it. You can do the same with seated calf raises for the soleus.
Back to top