Friday, June 14, 2024


For Stubborn calves

Calf is one of the most stubborn body parts in the history of bodybuilding whether you are naturally gifted or doing so many hours of inclined treadmill you will have some problems developing those calves let us first understand why calves are so different?


  • Calves are made out of two muscles Gastrocnemius and Soleus
  • The calf is normally utilized the whole day in your daily activities so it gets adapted to regular load
  • Hitting the calf in the gym in a normal training routine will just do nothing to your calves


By adding 60% of the load as a start and your reps will vary depends on your response but there are two different schools for reps and sets:


  1. High reps 20 to 30
  2. Low reps 6 to 12 with extremely heavy weights

You have to try both and choose what respond better


  1. Daily routine or every other day post or pre workout
  2. Three times per week
  3. Once week so many sets 5 or more exercises in total (Dorian Yates school)


1. Seated Calf Raise:

When you raise your leg try to squeeze on top and lower slowly by that you increase the stress on the calf which adds to your strain of the workout which is very beneficial

2. Standing Calf Raise:

The same technique on the seated calf to be applied on the standing calf go up and then lower slowly and so on

3. Leg Press Calf Raise:

That workout has been popular in the old days but they used to do it on the smith machine but it is not safest so we prefer the leg press or the leg press machine

4. Single-Leg Calf Raise:

The beauty of that exercise that it doesn’t actually need any gym, you can just put any step and use it to stand and you can also add any weights on one hand as below

5. Donkey Calf Raise:

If you watch the Arnold movie pumping iron you will see that it was one of Arnold favorite workout if you have a special equipment for it you are lucky otherwise you train it with a partner in your back or through adding weight on the smith machine


If you do train calves for many years and still struggling don’t worry, We will give you some tips that will alter your small calf genetics and you will be surprised with the results however you should know that everyone is different so you need to be patient to try and fail a few times

Let us give you some of the tips and hints which were discussed by the top gurus in the bodybuilding industry:

(Dave Palumbo, George Farah, Dorian Yates, Hani Rambod & Chris Aceto)

  1. Train with heavy weights 6 to 8 till failure (5 sets) each exercise
  2. Train with light weights 20 to 30 or to failure (5 sets) each exercise
  3. Train with super sets 2 exercise at a time in sequence
  4. Train with giant sets 4 exercises at a time in sequence


There are some other ways to develop your calf beside hitting weights in the gym

  1. Treadmill incline
  2. Stair master
  3. Walking on sand
  4. Calf roping


What is the 321 rule for calves?

The 3-2-1 rule for calves is a training method focusing on calf muscle development. It involves 3 sets of heavy weight with low reps, 2 sets with moderate weight and reps, and 1 set of light weight with high reps. This approach targets different muscle fibers and stimulates growth.

What is the secret to big calves?

The secret to big calves lies in consistent, varied training focusing on both the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles, incorporating high-rep, low-weight exercises along with low-rep, high-weight exercises, and ensuring proper recovery and nutrition.

How can I make my calves super strong?

To make your calves super strong, regularly perform a variety of calf exercises like standing and seated calf raises, increase weight progressively, incorporate plyometric exercises like jump rope or box jumps, and ensure adequate rest and nutrition for muscle recovery and growth.

Mohammed Riad
Mohammed Riad
Mohammed Riad is not just any pro bodybuilder; he's a testament to discipline, dedication, and drive. His chiseled physique speaks volumes of his commitment to the sport, but there's more to Mohammed than meets the eye. Beyond the weights and the stage, he's an avid writer, seamlessly weaving his extensive knowledge of bodybuilding into compelling narratives. Mohammed's articles at The Body Builder, formerly know as Body Guider, bridge the gap between hardcore training techniques and the philosophy of bodybuilding, making them invaluable resources for both seasoned athletes and newcomers to the sport. His unique blend of physical prowess and intellectual depth has earned him respect both inside and outside the gym. Through his words and his physique, Mohammed Riad continues to inspire and enlighten the fitness community, proving that muscles and mind can, indeed, coexist powerfully.

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