Tips to Tone Your CalvesSubmitted by: Kya Grace
The calf region of a person’s body tends to be bulky due to the thickness of the Femur bone and the high muscular density. A little bit of fat in this region can make your calves look disproportionately bulky, especially if your upper body is slim. Losing weight around your calves requires specific exercises that burn off the fat without adding too much muscle mass, as this will make them bulky again. Repeating low intensity exercises many times will make the muscles lean and taut rather than adding mass.
Squats are a simple yet efficient exercise to burn fat off your calves. This technique involves exercise of the quadriceps muscles. It also exercises your hamstrings and lower back. First, stand straight with your hands by your side. Bend your knees while raising your arms up until your thighs become parallel to the ground. At this point, your arms should be at your shoulder level. The aim is to get your lower legs and upper legs at right angles to each other with the knee at the centre. An important point to note is that your back must be straight and you must look forward at all times. Rise up from this position to the starting posture and repeat the exercise. This can also be done with weights for a more intense exercise, although this may result in gaining more muscle.
Skipping with a rope is a great low intensity exercise. A minimum of twenty minutes of skipping a day will burn off all the fat in a few weeks. Your calf muscles will be very sore initially as they won’t be accustomed to the load, but within a few days this will pass. Skipping exercises the quadriceps muscles in your calf. It is also a great cardio-vascular workout.
Running is a powerful exercise that will tone up your calf muscles immensely. A point to note here is that sprinting will not have the intended effect – it will build up and thicken your muscles instead of toning them. Endurance and long distance running will make your muscles lean and taut, while also burning away the body fat. Marathon runners always have a leaner figure than sprinters because of this.
Stretching the Calf Muscles
These exercises must all be concluded by stretching the calf muscles. This helps lengthen the calf muscles and make them leaner. Stand three feet away from a wall and step forward with one foot. Place your hands on the wall and bend your left knee slowly till you feel the stretch in your right calf. Your heels must touch the ground at all times. Stay in this position for about fifteen seconds before returning to the starting position. This can be repeated for the other leg in the same manner. Yoga or Pilates also works well to stretch the calf muscles.
All these exercises should be performed only after a thorough warm up including stretching. This reduces the risk of injury. The most important technique is controlling your diet. Unless you keep your fat and calorie intake low, these exercises will have little effect. With a proper routine and a good diet, you can have a great toned set of calf muscles.
About the Author: If you would like to hire a Personal Trainer in Cronulla, or to register for a free boot camps session, visit Sydney Boot Camp.
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