Very rarely do I come across an athlete with outstanding calves, usually they are a lagging muscle group for most people and it is definitely a source of deep frustration. However, I do feel that whilst genetics will play a big part in this there are many thingsEVERYBODYcan do in order to address this issue. For people with "average" genetics develop very good calves, I'm gonna share with you some of the training techniques
The ankles are notorious in many individuals for having terrible mobility, which means that by default your calves are going to be limited as a result in the way that they are able to contract. To overcome this I like to prescribe 1, 2 or even 3 second isometric contractions at the bottom stretch on each rep, when training calves. What this does is really stretch the Achilles to increase mobility andROMwithin the area. This also removes any momentum from the rep, so the gastrocnemius and soleus have to contract to lift the weight through the concentric phase. If you rely on momentum by bouncing off the bottom, you won't stimulate your fibres efficiently at all!
As with every muscle, I always encourage you to really squeeze it as hard as possible - this is how you stimulate growth effectively. However, when training calves don't just squeeze during the concentric I want you to apply a 1-2 second pause at the top of the isometric contraction before going into the eccentric phase.
This will enhance that mind to muscle connection which is usually very poor within this area.
Usually I will prescribe training of one muscle group per week and then introduce secondary work on certain lagging muscles every 4-5 days potentially. The calves I feel are a muscle which cover a lot of low maintenance work on a daily basis which make them more resilient to stress. Therefore training them every 3-5 days shouldn't lead to over training, and could have many positive benefits for your growth.
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