Running & Injury Prevention: The Calves⁣🏃

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The Gatrocnemius and Soleus are the two muscles that make up your “calf” muscle. These two muscles join together to become the Achilles’ tendon, the strongest and thickest tendon in your body. ⁣

As a runner, we place high demand on our calf muscles and Achilles’ tendon. Keeping our muscles and tendons strong and flexible is an important way to improve performance and decrease risk for injury. ⁣

➡️ Gastrocnemius Strengthening: Keeping both knees straight while performing heel raises off of a step.⁣

➡️ Soleus Strengthening: Keeping both knees bent while performing heel raises off of a step.⁣

▫️These exercises concentrically and eccentrically train our calf muscles and load our Achilles’ tendon. ⁣

▫️ 3 x 10-15 reps ⁣

▫️ Challenge yourself: Single Leg Heel Raises⁣

➡️ Gastrocnemius Stretching: Place your hands on a support surface in front of you and lean forward, step one heel back and anchor it into the ground, keeping your back leg straight while bending your front knee. ⁣

➡️ Soleus Stretching: Place your hands on a support surface in front of you and lean forward, step one heel back and anchor it into the ground, keeping your back leg bent while also bending your front knee. ⁣

▫️ These static stretches help to lengthen the muscle and increase mobility. ⁣

▫️ Hold 3 x 30 seconds⁣