Calf Stretches
Gastrocnemius and Soleus



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Calf stretches for your warm up and cool down. Follow these simple instructions to stretch your calf muscles.

The Stretching Handbook

The Stretching Handbook
A quick reference guide of 135 clear photos of every possible major stretching exercise.
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The 2 muscles of your calf are the gastrocnemius and soleus (deep). It's especially important to stretch them, they're the most common muscles to suffer from cramp.

Our calves are one of our most used muscles. Over-use or over-exertion, without proper stretching can lead to an injury, either directly to your calf muscles or indirectly to your ankle and foot.

I recommend doing calf stretches as part of your warm up and cool down. Make sure your muscles are warm before you stretch in your warm up, by doing loosening up and pulse raising exercises.

Your cool down stretches should be held for longer than in the warm up.

If your sport or exercise specifically involved your calves, spend even longer stretching them afterwards. Try gently massaging them too.

Although it may not seem it, your cool down is the most important step to avoiding injury. Most common injuries don't occur because of a poor warm up, but because of a poor cool down from the previous workout, which didn't allow proper recovery.

These stretches should be held for at least 10 seconds, without bouncing in the stretch. Make sure you don't overstretch. Take it to where you feel mild discomfort but no pain. Always come out of the stretch slowly.

Click here to see pictures and tips of stretches submitted by other visitors to this page.

Calf Stretches

  • Standing Gastrocnemius Stretch
  • 1 - Stand with your right foot forward and left foot back, a step width apart and toes pointing ahead.

    2 - Slightly bend your right knee (moving your weight forward), keep your left knee straight and heels on the floor.

    3 - Feel the stretch in your left calf.

    4 - Repeat by switching legs.

    Tip - You can facilitate this stretch by leaning on a wall directly in front of you. Gently push against the wall whilst doing the stretch described above.


  • Seated Gastrocnemius Stretch
  • 1 - Sit on the floor with both your legs straight out in front of you.

    2 - Slowly lean forward and hold on to your left toes.

    3 - Feel the stretch in your left calf.

    4 - Repeat by holding on to your right toes.


  • Standing Soleus Stretch
  • 1 - Stand with your right foot forward and left foot back, half a step width apart and toes pointing ahead.

    2 - Slightly bend both knees (keeping your back straight). Keep both heels on the floor (feel your weight going through your left leg).

    3 - Feel the stretch in your left calf (slightly lower than before).

    4 - Repeat by switching legs.


  • Kneeling Soleus Stretch
  • 1 - Kneel down and place your right foot next to your left knee.

    2 - Place your hands flat on the floor in front of you. Slowly lean forward, keeping your right heel on the floor.

    3 - Feel the stretch in your right calf.

    4 - Repeat with your left leg.



    Enjoy your calf stretches. Check out these videos people have submitted, to help guide you with your stretches:



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    Check Out Other Calf Stretch Pictures

    Click on the links below to see some great pictures and tips for your calf stretches. They were all submitted by other visitors to this page..

    Helen's Calf Stretch 
    My calf stretch! Stretching my gastrocnemius in the sunshine. I am particularly interested in the way Hatha Yoga can improve people's health. I've worked …

    Click here to write your own.



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