Why Your Calves are Not Growing

 

Calves are the most difficult muscle to grow, but they are capable of growth. The most common mistakes I see in the gym are:

1) Improper form; bouncing the weight at the bottom of the movement.

2) Poor mind-muscle connection.

3) Training too light.

4) Not performing enough volume.

1) Improper form; bouncing the weight at the bottom of the movement.

The most common mistake people make is bouncing the weight, which puts the load on your tendons and ligaments instead of the calf muscle. You will achieve a pump, but you are not working the muscle in a meaningful way. You want to work the calf, not your tendons. You want to go all the way down, get a strong stretch in the muscle, pause for a second or two, then use the calf to lift your heel as high as it will go, then hold the contraction a second before descending under control.

2) Poor mind-muscle connection.

You might find it beneficial to supplement your gym training with some high rep bodyweight training. Because of their high capacity for endurance, calves can be trained more often and do not require as much time to recover between sets. You can perform one set of 100 reps using your body weight, on a stair step in your home, on days you would not otherwise train your calves to add volume and improve your mind-muscle connection.

3) Training too light.

I recommend you pyramid your weights up and down. Start with a light set of 20 reps. Increase the weight and decreasing the reps on each succeeding set. For example:

  • 20 x 180 lbs.
  • 15 x 270 lbs.
  • 12 x 320 lbs.
  • 10 x 345 lbs.
  • 8 x 370 lbs.
  • 6 x 395 lbs.
  • 10 x 345 lbs.
  • 15 x 270 lbs.

4) Not performing enough volume.

Calves have more endurance capacity than most other muscles because they are used so much during daily activity. I recommend 15-20 sets each week, split up into two or three sessions.

I like to train my calves using the staggered sets methodology. Staggered sets are when you perform sets for unrelated muscle groups between sets for major muscle groups. It is a great way to work these muscles while you are still fresh, instead of waiting until the end of your workout when you are tired.

Conclusion.

Calves are challenging to develop, but if you apply the strategies in this article, you will see some marked improvements in just a few weeks. Best wishes and best of luck!

Learn more; How Naturals Should Train.

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