Friday, January 6, 2012

Donkey Calf raise

The Donkey Calf raise is a great exercise for the calves, but my gym doesn't have a dedicated machine. I have figured out a way to do this on the incline bench and it works wonderfully!

You can obviously do this in many ways, but the problem I encountered was finding a place where I could stretch my calves down as far as possible.

Above is a picture of Dave Draper (who lives over the hill from me in Santa Cruz) with Arnold  Schwarzenegger sitting on his back as he performs this exercise. Since I don't want any of the large men at my gym sitting on my back, I have to do this on my own. 

I use the incline bench like the one below, and I take the Olympic bar off the racks, and place it on the ground. I then get a dip belt and a 45 pound plate, I stand on the platform behind the incline bench, squat down and strap the belt around my waist, and slowly straighten up, allowing the plate to hang down between my legs. 

I then lean over and rest my forearms on the top of the bench, and perform the calf raises, making sure to stand all the way up on my toes, pausing at the top and then slowly lower down stretching at the bottom.

Calves need high reps, one reason why they are so difficult to grow, it takes forever, so who has time and it is boring, boring, boring! But at my gym they are anything but boring! The incline bench is set up so the platform is against the decline bench. So anyone on the decline is laying on the bench, head in a lowered position, near the platform of the incline bench, staring right up at my butt! I can look down through my legs and chat! Makes for interesting conversation.....

Bbelow is a good video explaining the Donkey Calf Raise, and although he is using an actual dedicated machine, I think his explanation is worth listening to and watching. The video afterward is a man actually performing it in the fashion very similar as to what I am describing.

Email subscribers will need to navigate directly to the blog to view both of the following videos. 

And now the video closer to how I am describing it.