Calves are a notoriously tough area to strengthen and tone. They are also an important muscle group to help you to balance and move more gracefully. Think about it: calves do a lot to move and help us balance our bodies over the lumps and bumps in the terrain.
This Exercise Works: Calves, Balance, Proprioception
Props to Use: Step, Curb, Tree Root
Starting Position: From the Athletic Stance place your toes and the balls of your feet along the edge of a curb, step or tree root, hanging your heels over the edge.
Action: Inhale as you lower your heels and exhale as you lift your heels up, using a full range of motion in both directions.
Easier: Start with flat terrain until you feel balanced, or find something to hold onto for support.
Harder: Try these calf raises eyes open for half of the set, then try them with eyes closed.
• For added balance find a focal point in the distance and stay focused on it.
• For greater stability throughout, engage your midsection and maintain good posture, with your hands in your peripheral vision.
Safety Tip: To avoid slipping, only use dry roots.