Your calves play an essential part in strengthening and supporting your lowers limbs. The calf muscles absorb the pressure of each step which impacts the performance of the legs and the body. Training your calf muscles individually with added importance helps build muscle strength, endurance, and stability. A strong calf muscle provides adequate support to the legs and lower body so that it can bear the weight of the rest. Strengthening the calves also ensures the firmness and efficiency of the ankles and feet. You can join an online fitness class.
Benefits of Calves Workout and Stretching
Usually neglected in hardcore workout routines, your calf muscle is one of the essential muscles in your body. With a strong calf, you can prevent many injuries like shock fractures, Plantar fasciitis, ankle sprains, Tendinopathies of the ankle, foot, and knee, etc. Some of these, however, are beyond your control, but with the strengthening of the calves, these are less likely to happen. Alternatively, the degree of strength of the calf muscles also decreases the chances of the severity of the injury and speeds up the recovery process.
Apart from strengthening the lower body and the core, the primary functions of calves workout and stretches are-
- Muscular calves make you faster.
- Training your calves ensures endurance. Thus, it helps you run for a long.
- It helps with keeping a consistent pace while running.
- You can jump higher with the help of a proper calves workout or stretching.
Calves Workout for Beginners
Many workouts and stretches target the calf muscle and work towards the strengthening of the same. If you are someone who is starting with exercise, is recovering from an injury or surgery, or are starting again after a long pause, you must try the following calves workouts for strong calf muscles-
One of the most basic and beginner-friendly calf workouts is foot pumps. It is a simple yet effective method to activate the calf muscle and stimulate blood flow. This is great for getting you going in a recovery session after an injury.
Steps to Follow-
- Lie on your back with your legs stretched out.
- Put your toes down and then pull them up towards you as much as possible.
- Repeat the step to and fro to create a rhythming pace.
- Continue doing this for a minute and repeat it every few hours for maximum efficacy.
- If you are uncomfortable in a lie-down position, you can try the same exercise by sitting and raising your feet from the surface.
2. Seated Calf Raises
Calf raises are probably the most common and suggested workout for strengthening the calf muscles. Seated calf raises are a variation of the usual calf raises. This is a great way to enhance calf strength and flexibility without a hardcore leg routine.
Steps to follow-
- Start by sitting in a chair, pressing the feet on the floor, and knees bent at 90 degrees.
- Next, gently put pressure on your toes against the floor while lifting your heels as much as possible.
- Hold the pose for about 5 seconds and slowly return to the starting position.
- Repeat this 10-20 times every day
- For added complexity, use weight by placing it on the thighs. It would work as a resistance to the force.
3. Standing Calf Raises
Standing calf raises are the essential calf raise exercise that works towards strengthening and firming the calf muscles.
Steps to follow-
- First, stand to relax with feet placed flat on the floor. Additionally, you can grab a chair or the wall for added support and balance.
- Raise your heels as much as possible by pressing your toes. Make sure your knees and spine are aligned with the torso.
- Hold the position for a few seconds, slowly release it, and return to the starting position.
- The ideal way to do this is in 3 sets of 10 repetitions.
At first, it would be difficult for you to distribute your body weight equally on both feet. But eventually, you will get a hold of it. Until then, focus on the exercise more than the body weight distribution.
For more efficacy, you can use weights by holding barbells while doing the calf raises.
These three exercises are exclusively for the beginner level. You can try the next couple of drills for a bit more advancement.
4. Single Standing Calf Raises
As the name suggests, the Single leg calf raises involves one leg at a time. These are excellent means to add more strength to the calf muscles. It may look straightforward, but the efficacy is unmatched.
Steps to follow-
- Start by standing by holding a chair or wall for balancing. Lift one foot while pressing the other against the floor.
- Press the floor with your toes and raise the heel as far as possible. The body should feel a thrust while going upwards.
- Continue in that post for 5 seconds and slowly return to the starting position.
- Start with 3 sets of 10 reps and then gradually increase the intensity.
Using weights is not mandatory, as the support you are taking from the chair or wall provides a joint force that works as resistance.
5. Step Standing Calf Raises
Another variable of the calf raises the step standing calf raise. These are the most popular calves workout as nothing stretches and strengthens your calf muscles like these. Obviously, you need the support of a step to execute this exercise.
- Start with your heels hanging out of a step, keeping the support on something like a wall.
- Loosen the heels to drop them as far as possible and rapidly press the step with your toes to raise the heels high.
- Hold the heels in the high position for a couple of seconds, and then go back down as low as possible.
- Repeat it 10-25 times, depending on the tolerability.
Make sure you are feeling a stretch in your calf muscle. It means you have put an equal amount of weight on both feet. It is an excellent combination of workout and time. Read more on blogstockk.
The calves workout and stretches are great for those who frequently suffer from foot, leg, and back pain. The main benefits of these exercises are that they build tolerance and strengthen your calf muscles and the core.
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