5 Reasons Your Calves Aren’t Growing

5 Reasons Your Calves Aren’t Growing

Calves are arguably one of the most undertrained muscle groups. Most people hide their toothpick calves in the gym by wearing track pants. You can either hide your weaknesses or work on them and turn them into strengths.

Because calves are a small muscle group, most people don’t train them enough or overlook them completely. There are a lot of misconceptions which go with calf training. Since you’re reading this article, we’re assuming you’re struggling with your calf development.

Grow Your Calves With These 5 Easy Tips

1. Train Your Calves Multiple Times a Week

Most people train their calves on their leg days which usually is once a week or not even that. Calves are a small muscle group, you stand on them for the entire day and they tend to recover faster than most of the other muscles.

The general thumb of the rule of training calves is, you can train them if they’re not sore. If you have genetically weak calves or are lagging otherwise, you should be training them thrice a week. Plan your calf workouts so you have at least 48 hours before the next training session.

2. Train Your Calves at the Beginning of Your Workouts

Majority of the people train their calves after they are done training their legs. By the time they get to training their calves, they’re already exhausted. You should be training your calves at the beginning of your workouts while you’re still afresh.

You can establish a better mind-muscle connection with your calves at the beginning of your workouts as compared to when fatigue starts to set in. Training your calves after a warm-up on the treadmill is even more effective.

3. Switch Intensity and Volume

You should constantly change the intensity and volume while training your calves. Don’t stick to a single rep and set range. Switch between high-intensity, low-volume and low-intensity and high volume workouts.

If you’re confused about intensity and volume, let us help you out. Volume is the number of sets and repetitions you’ll be performing in the workout. Intensity, on the other hand, is a little vague but is the amount of effort you put into your workouts.

4. Gastrocnemius and Soleus

Your calves are made up of two muscles gastrocnemius, and soleus. No single exercise targets both the muscles. The gastrocnemius is the longer muscle and can be targetted by performing standing calf exercises where your knees are locked out.

The soleus is the shorter muscle which can be targetted by performing seated calf exercises where your knees are bent. Alternate between both these exercises to ensure an overall calf development.

5. Treat Your Calves Just Like Any Other Muscle Group

You shouldn’t be treating your calves any different than your other muscle groups. If you perform 4-5 exercises for your biceps, back, etc. you should be doing the same with your calves.

Three sets of 10 reps aren’t going to do a lot for your weak calves. You should also experiment with advanced training techniques like supersets, drop sets, intraset stretching while training calves.


How often do you train your calves?

Let us know in the comments below. Also, be sure to follow Generation Iron on Facebook and Twitter.

78 COMMENTS

  1. Ah for some people…I had huge calfs since a kid and always skip leg day and still can’t make my biceps bigger than my calfs but no one seems impressed most people say it looks groos like you got a huge tumor on your legs lol

  2. I agree with a lot of what they said, train calves first, change up the routine and train them more often. I used to do at least 2 leg sessions a week, my legs have always been big but when trained properly they were huge.

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