The best calf exercises you do using a cable machine. Exercises your calf muscles can be effectively done using a cable machine.

Photo of women doing calf exercise using a cable machine.

A cable machine has the ability to train your calves from different angles with a variety of exercises. Because of the different attachments you are able to work your gastrocnemius and soleus muscles. There are some calf exercises you can do with a bench a platform. 


Seated Cable Calf Raise

Start: Set a bench lengthwise in front of the weight stack, and set a sturdy platform between the bench and the low pulley. Attach the straight bar to the low pulley. Grab the bar and sit up straight at the end of the bench facing the pulley. Rest your forearms on your thighs and hold the bar just above your knees. Set the balls of your feet on the platform, and lower your heels as far as you can.

Finish: Push from the balls of your feet, raising your heels as high as you can. Pause, then slowly return to the starting position.

Standing Unilateral Calf Raise

Start: Position a sturdy low platform or a couple of phone books in front of the weight stack. Attach the stirrup handle to the low pulley, grab it with one hand, and place the ball of your corresponding foot squarely on the platform. Hold on to something with your free hand for balance as you lift your other foot and rest it behind the Achilles tendon of your working leg. Stand up straight, and lower your working heel as far as you can.