Calf strengthening exercises for runners will help by strengthening your ankles, giving you more power in your run, and reducing the risk of injury.
As you probably already know, the calf (also known as the gastrocnemius muscle) is one of the most important muscles for long-distance runners, which is why maintaining your legs will improve your overall performance. It is essentially where all your balance and power is coming from while running.
Strong calves can give you better form, more power, and even make you run faster. On the other hand, if you have weak calves this is a common cause of Achilles tendonitis, shin splints, calf strains and plantar fasciitis. Ouch!
Your calves require a lot of maintenance, which is why you should regularly stretch the muscle as well as doing specific calf strengthening exercises to prepare your legs for stronger running and fewer injuries. Sounds like a lot of effort right? Don’t worry, check out these quick and easy best calf exercises for runners:
- Toe walk. Hold two dumbbells straight down by your sides, rise up on your toes, and walk forward for 60 seconds. Make sure you’re standing tall and hold perfect form. Repeat.
- Reverse calf raises. Instead of the usual calf raises, do these by standing on the edge of a step and lower your calves down, hold for 10 seconds and repeat.
- Downward dog. This move really stretches the muscle, if you can actually get into the position. Start on your knees with both hands placed shoulder width apart. Walk your feet back so your knees are no longer touching the floor. Push your heels back while lifting your bum to the ceiling. Keep your back straight as well as keeping both legs straight and hold in this position.
- Calf rolls with the Pulseroll vibrating foam roller. This move will release tight muscles, ease tension in the legs and increase flexibility. Sit on the floor and place the foam roller under your calf. Just place one ankle over the other and apply pressure down. Gently lean side to side and move back and forth to really target the muscle. Using a foam roller doesn’t have to be hard work, due to the vibrations you won’t need to roll so much, the vibrations do the hard bit!
Now you know the basics make sure you try out the best calf roller for runners. The Pulseroll vibrating foam rollers are perfect for tackling tough muscles, releasing lactic acid and easing muscle pain all while providing you with the best foam roller leg massage you’ve ever had. Try it out today.