Seated Calf Raise

Why Should You do Seated Calf Raise?

Sitting calf raise is a relatively simple exercise for you who want to activate the calves. Calf raise can be done both standing and sitting, and the latter variant is a better option for you who want to focus more on the inner muscle of the calves (Soleus). Standing calf press will activate the Gastrocnemius, the visible external two-part muscle, while sitting activates the Soleus, which builds more muscle mass inside the calf. The seated calf raise can be performed with a weight on your knee or in a machine intended for calf raise. If you train a lot at home, weights in the knee are, of course, a good option, while many gyms offer just the machine you need.

Exercise Details for Seated Calf Raise

  • Primary Muscle
  • Equipment
  • Level


Sit down in the machine. Place the knee pads directly above your knees and place the front of your feet on the footplate. Choose an appropriate weight. Do not use too heavy weights but work with several reps instead.


To start the exercise, lift the weight and unhook the locking mechanism. Lower the weight until the calf muscle is fully extended, and then press the weight with the calf muscle. Wait a few seconds in the top position before lowering the weight again and repeating the movement. Do not swing your upper body or pull with your arms in the handles.

If you want a little extra effect, you can do a sitting calf press on one leg at a time to really maximize the activation in each leg.

Tips for Seated Calf Raise

  • This exercise trains the soleus, which is the inner calf muscle
  • Go all the way down and up
  • Perform the exercise slowly, do not swing the weight
  • Do not choose a weight that is too heavy. Work with several reps instead. Totally okay between 20-30
  • Your upper body should not swing back and forth but be fixed in an upright position
  • You should not pull the handles with your arms, only your calves should move the weight
  • Hold for 1-2 seconds in the top position
  • Stretch out the calf in the bottom position
  • You can perform the exercise with a dumbbell on your knee if there is no machine nearby

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