Standing Calf Raises
Stand on a step or some type of platform with your toes and ball of the foot on the edge, and heels hanging off. Keeping knees and back straight, use your calf muscles to raise heels above the horizontal. Using a platform helps the workout have greater range of motion.
The third set should be difficult to finish, if you want the calf workout to be productive. Consider holding dumbbells at your side for the calf raises if the third set is completed easily. Weight will vary according to the person; remember that light weight helps keep form balanced. Up the reps before you up the weight to find the desired intensity level.
Calf Press on the Leg Press Machine
Sit on the leg press machine with your toes and the balls of your feet on the platform, and your heels hanging off. Don’t lock your knees. To complete a rep, push out with your toes, until the foot is fully extended away from your body.
It may be difficult to find the right weight to use with this workout, so start light, so you can ensure you get the form down. As an alternative exercise, try doing one foot at a time.
Find a wall or overhang that is a couple of feet overhead. Put your hands above your head and engage your calves to do quick jumps, touching a spot up the wall that requires at least some elevation. The higher up the wall the better. Don’t squat for this exercise, as we’re trying to isolate the calves. Don’t rest between jumps; do them in fast succession.
You’ll want to generate some force for each jump with your hands, so when you land, bring your hands to head level. As you jump, explode your hands upward to the spot you’re reaching for. Repeat this movement each rep. This is a common workout for volleyball players (quick jumps to get hands high to block a ball).