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Bottom Emphasis Calf Raises

Ever since reading about bottom emphasis calf raises, it’s become the mainstay of my calf workouts. I marvel at the pump and depth of fatigue, as I stagger/shuffle around my gym post set. Like my neck, I find every other week is best for progress and growth.

It’s abled me to get my calves up to 18". Thanks Ell for such a wonderful calf builder. :+1:

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Wow, that’s not a calf it’s a full grown cow.

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Haha Thanks! And “big calves” don’t run in my family. Goes to show the value of HIT applied properly.

What is your routine?

Push/Legs/Pull is my staple routine. For calves it’s bottom 1/2 to failure + top 1/2 to failure + bottom 1/2 to failure.

Impressive results.
Do you work the calves 30-10-30 style or another method?Thanks.

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Thanks! I have tried it, yes, but always gravitate to what’s worked best.

For quads, I rely on Doug Brignole’s cable squats. Everyone I have put on to it, report back how much they love them. One guy, a super-advanced trainee, couldn’t put on his pants the day after. Haha

I will give this a try, this is my least responsive body part.

Definitely do johnny64. They take some mastery, feeling where the 1/2 way mark is. But once you get them down pat, took me a couple of workouts, you should see some quick calf growth.

Is there any link to cable squats procedure/set up?

How to Do Brignole Squats / Cable Squats - YouTube

I use a straight bar, and don’t lock out my legs.

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Thanks for this @dynazty!

How do you perform reps (and how many sets) on the cable squat? 30-10-30 applied? Any limitations considering smaller weight stack in the cable-cross - is the load sufficient?

How about this one.



I keep my reps between 12-15, I find that the sweet spot. I have yet to try 30-10-30 on them, normal reps are grueling enough. Many times I suffer deep quad tremors for hours afterwards.

My Powertec can be loaded up to 500lbs, so I have no issues.

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Looks knee friendly, and prob not bad for posture either …nice :thinking::raised_hands:

&yeah if calves are stubborn the stretch position/lower half is king

That looks unique! I can see how that would trash the quads.

Having worked my way up to a 400# squat, and the subsequent issues which came with that (upper-back problems shown in x-rays) I know all too well the problematic nature of bb squats. Thankfully cable squats hit my quads in a unique way, and are quad dominant.

Bottom-emphasis calf raises stimulate the calves fully and thoroughly. I only wish I’d known about them years ago.

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Can you guys who do bottom emphasis calve work post your routines. Sets/reps, hold times single leg, both legs, etc.

On a calf machine, using both legs, I get as many bottom 1/2’s as I can (10-15). Then as many top 1/2’s as possible (maybe 6-8). Finally, maximum bottom 1/2’s (another 6-8). On average it looks something like 12+8+8 (when I reach 15 reps on the first, I add weight).

I pause at the top of each rep for 1-second, totally avoiding momentum. My feet are rotated outwards, as we naturally walk, pushing through the ball of my big toes.

Initially I did this weekly, until my progress stalled, then I dropped back to every-other-week. With calf and neck (neck strap), if I don’t allow sufficient R&R progress is minimal, if at all. But once I went to fortnightly, I was capable of 3-5 new reps per workout, and my size took off.
My Calf

Thanks for the info. Did Dr D write an article on this? Link?