If you’re part of #TeamNoCalves, you probably blame it on the fact that you have crappy genetics. And sure, genetics do play some role in the development of your calves, but let’s be real, you’re probably not training your calves as hard as they should be (if at all). You’d rather bench your pecs off the bone (and enjoy the ego boost of big numbers) than put in the hours, weeks, and months of work it’s going to take to grow those calves.
Well, we’ve got the solution to your no calves dilemma.
Best Tips to Build Bigger Calves
If you want your calves to grow, you need to start increasing the total amount of volume with which you train them. Now this doesn’t mean blasting them with 20-30 sets in a single workout...you wouldn’t be able to walk straight for a week if you did that, most likely.
What you need to do is increase the frequency of your calf training, to the tune of 3-5 times per week.
Volume is one of the primary drivers of hypertrophy, plain and simple. Yes, intensity is important, but if you’re not performing enough total volume per week, it doesn’t matter how heavy you lift, your calves won’t grow as big as they are capable of.
For most lifters, this comes out to a total weekly set volume of 12-16 reps, divided across 3 sessions is 3-4 sets per session incorporating a mixture of both seated and standing calf raises.
Technique is Everything
Using momentum and bouncing the weight up and down is a sure-fire way to not grow your calves.
Here is how every rep should be performed:
- Powerfully contract the calves to raise the weight
- Pause at the point of peak contraction for 2-3 seconds
- Pause at the bottom and hold the stretch for 2-3 seconds
You’ll experience a whole new level of soreness (and growth) when you start performing your calf exercises this way.