Rope jumping will build stubborn calf muscles.
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Your calves contain two major muscles: the gastrocnemius and the soleus. The gastrocnemius helps to bend your knees and extend your feet. The soleus doesn't cross your knee as the gastrocnemius does, so its major contribution is to ankle flexion. Because your calves help to position and move your feet and ankles, the calf muscles are key components in your ability to balance. To build the gastrocnemius, perform weighted heel raises in the standing position. Seated toe raises will blast the soleus. Balance your anaerobic training with a rigorous rope jumping workout that can unleash the power of your calves as well as boost your cardiovascular system.
Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, positioning the rope so it hangs behind your heels.2.
Swing the rope over your head and begin skipping with your weight evenly distributed between your feet.
Land on the balls of your feet after the rope passes below, keeping your knees slightly bent.4.
Contract your abdominals, maintain a straight back and keep your shoulders tucked in. Direct your gaze forward.5.
Skip as fast as you can, jumping only high enough to clear the rope, for 15 seconds.6.
Rest for 15 seconds. Repeat four times or more, resting between each set.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart on the edge of a weight plate or a block of wood. Allow your heels to hang off the edge but keep them above the floor.2.
Hold dumbbells in each hand with your arms extended by your sides.3.
Lean forward slightly and slowly rise to the balls of your feet.4.
Hold the peak position for a second and then slowly return to the starting position. Perform 10 to 15 reps for one to three sets.
Place a box in front of a chair and sit with the balls of your feet on top of the box, your knees bent at right angles and your thighs parallel to the floor. Let your heels hang in the air in front of the box. Keep your legs together.2.
Position a weight, such as a barbell or weighted backpack, just above your knees. Hold on to the weight with both hands to secure it.3.
Raise your lower legs up onto your toes, lifting your heels as high as possible.4.
Hold the top of the range of motion for a second and then slowly return to starting position. Perform 20 to 30 reps for two to three sets.
- 2 dumbbells
- Barbell or weighted backpack
- Jump rope
- Because the gastrocnemius muscle consists primarily of dense muscle fibers, use explosive movements with heavy weights and perform at least 10 reps of a strengthening exercise, according to вЂњNatural BodybuildingвЂќ by John Hansen. In contrast, the soleus muscle consists of red muscle fibers with plenty of blood supply, so aim for a high volume of reps -- at least 15 to 20 -- to get a good workout.
- Perform an adequate warm-up of five to 10 minutes of light cardio. Also do dynamic stretches for your lower legs, such as forward and backward leg swings, to make your muscles more pliable for strengthening exercises and jumping.