How to Standing Calf Raise

About the Standing Calf Raise

Found in most gyms, the standing calf raise machine offers gym-goers the ability to target the gastrocnemius – the bulky muscle of the calf which when developed resembles an upside-down heart shape, due to its two muscle heads.

Performing the calf raise standing, with a slight bend in the knee joint, places the gastrocnemius in a mechanically strong position, hence its high level of stimulation from this exercise. On the other hand, the flat muscle which runs beneath the gastrocnemius, the soleus, is much less involved. If the athlete performs the calf raise seated the roles are reversed, with the soleus becoming the primary mover.

How to perform


  1. Set pin to correct weight and adjust the level of the shoulder pads
  2. Place shoulders under the pads and stand erect, placing the balls of your feet on the edge of the platform so your heels are over hanging
  3. Stand erect, slight bend in the knee, and grasping the handles


  1. Keeping the knee fixed in a bent position, raise your heels upward until you feel peak contraction of the calves
  2. Slowly reverse the movement, descending until the heels are a little below the level of the platform providing a stretch to the calves
  3. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions

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