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  • Writer's pictureLuke Nelson

Calf injuries: protect then overload


Did you know the calf muscle is actually made up of THREE different muscles? 🤯

When managing calf injuries, here's what you should do:

1️⃣ Initially bias the uninjured muscle/s by protecting and slightly offloading the injured area while continuing to load the remainder of the calf.

2️⃣ As rehab progresses, bias the injured component to increase its strength and capacity.

🏋️‍♀️Exercise options to bias different calf components:

To bias the Medial calf (and offload the lateral calf):

🎯Calf raises with toes turned outwards

🎯Calf raises with 1st MT off the edge of a step/weight plate

🎯Pulses with 1st MT offloaded

To bias the Lateral calf (and offload the medial calf):

🎯Calf raises with toes turned inwards

🎯Calf raises with 4-5th toes off the edge of a step/weight plate

🎯Pulses with 4-5th toes offloaded

For Gastrocs injuries, early exercises to offload here would include seated calf raise variations.

🔑Remember, protect first, then overload 💪🏼

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  • Nunes JP, Costa BDV, Kassiano W, Kunevaliki G, Castro-E-Souza P, Rodacki ALF, Fortes LS, Cyrino ES. Different Foot Positioning During Calf Training to Induce Portion-Specific Gastrocnemius Muscle Hypertrophy. J Strength Cond Res. 2020 Aug;34(8):2347-2351.

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