Hypertrophy From 100 Flutters
I've worked my calves for more than 60 years, and I know a thing or two about what causes them to grow. In my experience, your calves respond best to the following:
- Only a few exercises
- Medium-to-heavy resistance
- Higher-than-normal reps
- Partial reps
- Pain of muscle fatigue
- Pumped conditions
- Cold water
Recently, I tried working the calves in an interesting way... after which one of my long-time trainees said, "Let's call these flutters." That was an appealing name. But what are flutters?
Flutters are where you move a short distance in the standing calf raise. For example, the bottom one-inch segment, and do faster-than-normal movements for 20 reps.
Besides the bottom one inch, I use the middle one inch, and the top one inch... in a specific order, for one lengthy, fluttering set.
- Place a moderately heavy resistance on a standing calf raise machine or load a barbell in a power rack. You'll need a sturdy block or secure portable ledge to stand on. Make sure the balls of your feet are securely on the ledge.
- Go to the bottom for a complete stretch and perform 20 flutter reps, moving approximately one inch, both up and down. All 20 reps should take you about 20 seconds.
- Move immediately to the middle range, again only one inch, and do 20 flutters. You should begin feeling a moderate burn in your calves.
- Get higher and try to stand on your big toes. Do another 20 flutters in the top-most position. Remember, these are fast short reps at the rate of one second per rep.
- Continue, with no rest, and return back into the middle range for another 20 quick reps. You should definitely be feeling a deep burn, but keep going.
- Stretch to the bottom one inch for a final 20 flutters.
So, bottom, middle, top, middle, bottom: 20, 20, 20, 20, 20! That's 100 reps in about 100 seconds.
Expect some soreness. Some of the soreness can be erased by soaking your calves in 72-degree F (or colder) water. If possible, try that for 5 to 10 minutes after your workout.
Do this routine twice per week with a few days between workouts, like on Monday/Thursday.