Direct Calf Training

Article written by Matt Mills In most articles I have read on calf training, it’s all from a bodybuilding perspective about how to make them bigger. Generally using some line like “turn your calves into cows”, well I’m not here to talk about only make them bigger. Hypertrophy will occur on this program, but I am writing this mainly for injury prevention. A lot of strength athletes say to avoid calf training as it will cause a “pump” during a competition, making it harder to move with the weight. This simply is not true, and the calves, like any other body part, need some direct training. I have always done direct calf training in my programs while I trained for strongman, and never once experienced a calf pump during an event. It’s a well-known fact that bicep tears are a common injury when it comes to strongman. I have always recommended plenty of arm training to combat this, and to make the tendons stronger. Calf training is no different, and I have been seeing more and more calf injuries in not only in strongman, but now in Crossfit. One of the worst injuries I have seen is an Achilles tendon tear, and I hope none of you experience it. In Crossfit, there is a LOT of jumping, and high impact. It’s not uncommon for an athlete to go from double unders right to box jumps. Stronger calves will equal stronger tendons, preventing these kinds of injuries. <