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American Family Children's Hospital

Calf Stretch

Calf flexibility can be important in the health and function of your low back, shins and feet. In addition to stretching after exercise, stretching your calves can be a great way to give you a one minute stretch break at your desk.
  • Stand tall, holding a counter top or sturdy, stable chair.
  • Place one foot back behind you.
  • Look back at your foot to check alignment, the toes should be pointed forward or slightly toed in.
  • Draw your abdominals in, as if zipping a tight pair of pants.
  • Lean your whole body forward, front knee bent, try not to bend forward at your waist. Keep heel of back foot on floor.
  • Hold for 15–30 seconds, then slightly bend the back knee. Hold for another 15–30 seconds. The bent knee position stretches a different a different portion of the musculature, so you may feel the stretch lower in the calf. Stretch both legs one to two times each.