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  1. #1
    Registered User Hardgainer2000's Avatar
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    Best CALF exercises for mass??

    my calves are really stubborn. I do about 6-7 hard sets of seated calf raises going very slow and till failure of about 16-18 reps. My calves have grown maybe 1/4 inch. Any other good exercises out there?

    Should i do calves more frequent than other parts?
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  2. #2
    Rehabbin' it Limbo's Avatar
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    You need to do a standing calf exercise and a seated calf exercise. They work different parts of your calves. Do a little research (use the Search button) and you'll see what I mean.
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  3. #3
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    Don't forget genetics. I do 395 x 10 on the standing calf machine and have 14.5'' calves. So I dunno
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    Registered User Termmy51's Avatar
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    That is strange because I max at 180 and have 15+ calves.
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    Registered User Nemon's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Termmy51
    That is strange because I max at 180 and have 15+ calves.
    Proving his point perhaps?

    Heavy ppl have big calfs, never met a heavy guy with small calfs.
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  6. #6
    12 to go! Steveo31's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Termmy51
    That is strange because I max at 180 and have 15+ calves.
    Strange indeed...what is your bf percent? Nemon may have a point there.
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  7. #7
    Old School AMG's Avatar
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    I've found Standing Calf Raises to be the best size builder.
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  8. #8
    Registered User flexster's Avatar
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    just my 2 cents, but you may want to up the reps to like 30. the cavles are worked pretty good day in, day out. they need alot more reps to get them growing. I do anywhere from 20 to 40 reps.
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    Message Board Pirate jcaballplaya77's Avatar
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    With Calves genetics play a big factor but..... I've found that running stairs for cardio for about 30 minutes very light once per week really pumps my calves and they've grown over 2 inches since i first used this technique in July.
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    I'll hit leg press calfs....then some seated calfs...ten standing smith calfs....all rest pause sets...it seems even tho calfs are such a small muscle that mine can really take alot of abuse
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  11. #11
    Registered User BullGod's Avatar
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    Originally posted by jcaballplaya77
    With Calves genetics play a big factor but..... I've found that running stairs for cardio for about 30 minutes very light once per week really pumps my calves and they've grown over 2 inches since i first used this technique in July.
    I have to say I agree...when i ran stairs my calves grew like a mother....you can also add resistance in the form of a weight vest......some will argue that the only way to build them is with heavy weights and calf raises..but I would argue that they have not tried it......I now do lots of heavy calf raises and believe in them as a mass builder but I know running stairs definately works.
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  12. #12
    Senior Member anabolic1's Avatar
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    lol i do 70lb barbell calf raises for 12 reps only and only weight 150lbs and have 14 1/2 inch calves its genetics.
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  13. #13
    24/7 Xpander's Avatar
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    Originally posted by BullGod
    I have to say I agree...when i ran stairs my calves grew like a mother....you can also add resistance in the form of a weight vest......some will argue that the only way to build them is with heavy weights and calf raises..but I would argue that they have not tried it......I now do lots of heavy calf raises and believe in them as a mass builder but I know running stairs definately works.
    def tried the stairs route and didn't garner in any growth....from my early teens t/o all high school and 2 yrs in college - i was in track and have run more stairs than sands in the sea....ok, bit-o-exagg, but you get the point. I never started to see any type of size gains until I worked them at the gym, ie seated and donkey raises. not saying it doesn't work, just depends on the person.

    to the origianl post.,..althogh standing/donkey is prob the best overall, a combo of seated and standing is best as they work different areas of the calf, to a degree. also the gastrocs and soleus have different types of muscle fibers (fast/slow twitch) and should be trained accordingly. heavier weight/lower reps on standing, and (still heavy but) more managable weight/higher reps on seated, imo.
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  14. #14
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    Originally posted by anabolic1
    lol i do 70lb barbell calf raises for 12 reps only and only weight 150lbs and have 14 1/2 inch calves its genetics.
    No, cause I do way more than you and our calves are the same size.

    Originally posted by flexster
    just my 2 cents, but you may want to up the reps to like 30. the cavles are worked pretty good day in, day out. they need alot more reps to get them growing. I do anywhere from 20 to 40 reps.
    This true? It makes sense, but never heard of workin the calf moreso than "usual".
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  15. #15
    Number One Man AJbuilder's Avatar
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    if i had to pick one, it would have to be donkey calf raises.
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    Registered User Need 2Whey more's Avatar
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    I think its a combination of techniques, but I think your either born with them or you not. Genetics will always determine how big they are or get. I'm like most of you though, I work em hard but they take time ( like forearms for me). I go high reps 20 -30 rep range aswell.

    I'm going to try running the stairs routine, but too much cardio wouldn't be too good for me I have a high metabolism and can't spare too much cals.

    Good post guys.
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  17. #17
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    Originally posted by Need 2Whey more
    I'm going to try running the stairs routine, but too much cardio wouldn't be too good for me I have a high metabolism and can't spare too much cals.
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  18. #18
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    want big calves?? set a treadmill to its highest incline and walk on it for about 10-15 min, at a pretty low speed 2.6-3.2 range, be sure to really push with your feet when walking, dont hold on to handles or anything, if you want to also do some weights do them BEFORE

    ps. this also sheds a good amount of calories
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  19. #19
    Registered User flexster's Avatar
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    the calves are stubborn, doesnt matter how hard I work them, they dont really hurt much at all. Mine have started growing again once I doubled the reps. Its kinda like a tough piece of meat. You have to tenderize it before eating or you hvae to chew forever. Same with the calves, you have to really work them by using alot of reps or by doing stairs which has the same effect as doing alot of reps.
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    some people have large knees, making their calves look thinner
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    Originally posted by flexster
    the calves are stubborn, doesnt matter how hard I work them, they dont really hurt much at all. Mine have started growing again once I doubled the reps. Its kinda like a tough piece of meat. You have to tenderize it before eating or you hvae to chew forever. Same with the calves, you have to really work them by using alot of reps or by doing stairs which has the same effect as doing alot of reps.
    hahaha
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  22. #22
    Member Death of Rats's Avatar
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    I find Donkey Calf raises really good.
    I'm hungry
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  23. #23
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    Originally posted by Death of Rats
    I find Donkey Calf raises really good.
    wrd.......
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    Want big calves? Run, run, and then run some more. That mixed with the usual exercises should do it. I had 16inch calves because of soccer, then when I started lifting again they grew to 17.
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    Registered User Boilerkid's Avatar
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    something else...the calves are primarily fast twitch muscles, so they should respond to faster reps. i usually do one of my exercises with slow reps and one with faster reps and heavier weight.

    for me, the main thing is switching it up often.
    one day at a time
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    forget high reps!!!

    DO YOUR EXERCISES WITH HEAVY WEIGHT, KEEP REPS TO ABOUT 10, AND MAKE THEM BURNN!!!!

    Your calves get worked every day with high reps, while you walk, climb stairs, jog, run, and do daily activities.

    what the calves are NOT used to is HEAVY WEIGHT AND LOW REPS.

    I began trying this method and got incredibly great gains in one month, Im never going back to the 20-30 rep thing i used to do.
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    I found it's the tempo of the reps moreso than what exercise I do for calves.
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    Experiment. I found that I did a couple of months (hitting them every 4-5 days) of high rep work helped. I'm talking a couple of warm up sets then a set of 50+ reps. So on that set bang out the reps and then pause if need be a keep going. It's tough and it may have just been the shock of something new but it did the trick. Admittedly it has run its course and I am back to medium reps.
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    Do lots of cardio, but do it on your tip toes. Your calves will literally brace the entire weight of your body every time you land. When this gets easy, add ballast by attaching a hydration bladder filled with water to yourself. Calves are dependent a lot on genetics, especially depending on the muscle insertions in them. If you have low-inserting calves, they will grow from anything, and you can train them like any other muscle. If you don't, the above method works to add mass for anyone, guaranteed.
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    Originally Posted by Hardgainer2000 View Post
    my calves are really stubborn. I do about 6-7 hard sets of seated calf raises going very slow and till failure of about 16-18 reps. My calves have grown maybe 1/4 inch. Any other good exercises out there?

    Should i do calves more frequent than other parts?
    just keep pounding em

    16-18 reps might be too easy than
    put on more weight till u hit about 12ish

    and keep doing sets until failure

    and do donkey calf raises they work the outside of ur calves like those thin lines going down the side of your leg those get worked.

    the calf raise worked those 2 calf muscles in the back. point ur toes in to work the inner calf. toes out to work outer calf.

    and that should do it. keep poundin em and they will grow.
    do it just like every other muscle. like twice a week or so i good.

    and it also has to do with genetics. if ur genes are chicken leg type its just going to be harder to get bigger calves. but u can get bigger calves its not impossible. Just gotta work harder than the good genetic legged people
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