Calf Exercise

A calf exercise tends to be simple, but effective. While I am not going to show you anything fancy, this exercise will work for you. Our calf muscles go through a lot of work during our daily activities. Every time we take a step these guys are working to keep us upright and balanced.

We are a tad limited on varying the basic calf exercise. However using tools such as simple step or landing can greatly add to our workout. Just perform the exercise below with your heels hanging off the step.

One other note: calves should be done as a part of your lower body or leg routine.

The technical terms for the calf muscle are lateral gastrocnemius and the soleus.

Only One Calf Exercise Is Needed

Standing Calf Raise

Start- Begin with your feet directly under your hips.

Go For It- Simply lift up onto your tip toes. Pause for a second and lower back to start.

Tips and Techniques-

– You can hold onto dumbbells for increased oomph.

– You can turn your toes outward and lift. This focuses more on the outside of the calf muscle (soleus).

– You can turn your toes inward and lift. This focuses on the inside of your calf muscle (gastrocnemius).

– You can lift and lower on a 1-2-3-4 rhythm or lift up and hold for 5 seconds then lower- lift up for 5 seconds and lower, etc.

– Lots of ways to do this simple calf exercise. Just be sure you can feel your calf muscles working.

– Using a step or calf machine will help develop stronger muscles.


Calf muscles are small, but important. We want to create balance in the body. Implementing this simple, but good, calf exercise is a great way to improve overall balance and strength in the legs.

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  • Mish

    You cannot rely on just one calf exercise. The standing calf raise does very little to work your soleus. Seated calf raises allow one to train their soleus, which when toned, will add more fullness to the calves. The soleus, which sits under the gastrocnemius (not outside of the calf as your article wrongly suggests) works when the leg is bent. Also, please do not misuse the term lateral gastrocnemius, which makes up only one side of this muscle.

  • cristina

    great excersise. i like it. maybe for future refrance add a few more. thanks