Barbell Seated Calf Raises
Sit on a chair or bench for this exercise. Keep your back straight and your midsection firm. Place a step or block in front of you – make sure it’s secure and steady. Have your legs bent at a 90 degree angle, positioned so only the balls of your feet are on the step in front of you. Your knees should line up directly above your ankles. Keep your feet straight and facing frontwards. Place a thick folded towel across your thighs then place the barbell on top – the towel is there to offer some padding between the barbell and your thighs. Now push your heels up as high as possible, squeezing your calf muscles, then lower your heels down until you feel the stretch. Then raise your heels again. Do this continually, until you have completed your set. You should feel a burning sensation in your calf muscles.
Single Leg Calf Raises
Placing a dumbbell in your right hand, stand on a step, block or platform (making sure it’s secure and steady) and have your left leg folded up behind the right leg. The ball of your right foot should only be on the step with your heel hanging off the end. Have the dumbbell at arms length by your side with your palm facing your outer thigh. Push up high with your right heel, squeezing your calf muscle, then lower your heel down again to feel the stretch. Repeat for required amount of reps, then swap legs placing the dumbbell in your left hand, right leg folded behind left leg and your left foot on the platform. Note: If you find it hard to balance, using your free hand, hold onto something solid – making sure you still maintain correct posture and technique for your single leg calf raises.
Standing Dumbbell Calf Raises
Stand with your feet flat on the floor and narrower than shoulder width apart, toes pointed frontwards. Keep your chest out and midsection firm, do not arch your back. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, with your palms facing your outer thighs. Push up onto your big toes so your heels are raised. Squeeze your calf muscles then lower your heels down slowly. Repeat until you have finished your set. Keep your legs straight throughout the whole movement.
Standing Calf Raise Machine
Stand on the calf raise machine with the balls of your feet on the block or platform and your heels hanging off the edge. Standing up straight with your chest out and midsection firm placing your shoulders under the shoulder pads (so the pads are resting on your shoulders) and your hands on the handles – depending on the machine. Keeping your legs straight. Push up high raising your heels and squeezing your calf muscles then lower your heels down to feel the stretch. Repeat for required amount of reps
Seated Calf Raise Machine
Sit on the seated calf raise machine with the balls of your feet on the platform and your heels hanging off the edge. Sitting up straight with your chest out and midsection firm. Place the thigh pads on your thighs, just above where your knee is bent. With your hands on the handles or holding onto the bottom of your seat, raise your heels up high, squeezing your calf muscles then lowering your heels down until you feel the stretch. Repeat for required amount of reps.
© Mandy Gibbons
Virtual Fitness Trainer