The CRITICAL Movement for Maximum Calve Growth
I will break down in simple easy to remember stages what the steps are through the entire movement of a claves exercise. And if you apply this to your next routine, you will need a fire extinguisher to put out the burning sensation from your calves. Is the question? ‘CAN YOU HANDLE THE PAIN AND PUSH THROUGH IT?’.
The basis of the correct movement is as follows;
Smith Machine Calve Raise
Choose a lightweight to begin. I would suggest this on all exercises for the first set to feel each muscle group your working and what all the muscle are doing.
If you were to lower the Smith Machine bar to the floor, where the bar would hit the floor, you want to position your feet around 30cm behind that.
Now you know where to stand, Once, under the bar, you will be stood at a 75-degree angle, NOT feet directly underneath the bar. This allows for a safe stretch to start your lift from.
Position the bar on the trap area of the upper back (like you would if you were to squat), then un-rack the bar. Your feet should be in the position (as above) with around 30cm width between your feet.
Bend your knees very slightly, to remove direct strain through the knee joint, and now your almost ready to raise.
Wearing the correct foot (explained above), you are now ready to start the raise. But before you move, we need to think about your toes. When you go up onto the toes, well actually the front of your foot that your toes are joined to. If you were to number your toes from left to right, 1-5 (1 being your big toe and 5 being your small toe) you want to position the weight more on 2 and 3, with no.1 toe just stabilising and no.5 toe almost taking no stress at all.
When you do this movement, try and keep your toes as relaxed as possible. Once you’re at the top of the action, hold for 1 second and try to really contract the calves and push even higher and more onto the very tip of the front of the foot. Remember this should be done in a 2-3 second up and the 2-3 seconds down movement.
This technique is hugely important and needs to be executed on each exercise. So, make sure you master this. And you will grow great calves.
Week 1. 4 sets 10-15 reps (feet straight)
Week 2. 1 set 33 reps of each of the 3-foot positions (1-foot position equals 33 reps)