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The 7 Best Calf Raise Machines 2021 [Reviews and Guide]

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As a collegiate athlete who has trained in several small to world-class gyms, I’ve been able to test out different types of Calf Raise Machines on the market.

However, out of the ten Calf Raise Machines that we got to test and research, we recommend the TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block Bearings.

The TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block Bearings is one of the highest weight capacity calf raise machines on the market. It is an affordable machine that provides everything you need to get your calf muscles big and strong.

With a 3” thick stitched padding for both the seat and thighs, it’s perfect for individuals who want the cushion and control of moving heavy weights without it hurting.

The Top Calf Raise Machines Reviewed

Product ImageProduct's nameDimensionsItem WeightMore Info
Body-Solid GSCR349 Seated Calf Raise Exercise Machine for Strength Training, Home Gym EquipmentBest Affordable
Body-Solid GSCR349 Seated Calf Raise Exercise Machine for Strength Training, Home Gym Equipment
47” x 20” x 39” inches95 lbsSee latest price
XMark 11-Gauge Seated Calf Raise with Height Adjustable Swiveling Thigh Pads, Dual Olympic Weight Posts, and Wide, Textured Non-Slip Foot Brace Bar XM-7613Best Olympic
XMark 11-Gauge Seated Calf Raise with Height Adjustable Swiveling Thigh Pads, Dual Olympic Weight...
47.5” 22” x 35” inches80 lbsSee latest price
Deltech Fitness Seated Calf MachineBest Comfortable
Deltech Fitness Seated Calf Machine
47” x 19” x 36” inches66 lbsSee latest price
Valor Fitness CC-5 Seated Calf Machine Home Gym Equipment Leg Exercise Strength Training Workout Raises Strengthen Calves and LegsBest Beginner
Valor Fitness CC-5 Seated Calf Machine Home Gym Equipment Leg Exercise Strength Training Workout...
51.25” x 25” x 36” inches
80 lbsSee latest price
Body-Solid Leverage Squat and Calf Raise Machine (GSCL360)Best All-Around
Body-Solid Leverage Squat and Calf Raise Machine (GSCL360)
62” x 43” x 56” inches170 lbsSee latest price
Powertec Fitness Levergym Squat/Calf BlackBest Compact
Powertec Fitness Levergym Squat/Calf Black
58” x 55” x 62” inches198 lbsSee latest price
TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block BearingsBest Basic
TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block Bearings
48” x 22” x 40” inches1000 lbsSee latest price

Find the Best Calf Raise Machines for You

Body-Solid GSCR349 Seated Calf Raise Exercise Machine for Strength Training, Home Gym Equipment

Best Affordable

#1- Body-Solid GSCR349 Seated Calf Raise Exercise Machine for Strength Training, Home Gym Equipment

See latest price

Body Solid is an American distributor and manufacturer of home and commercial strength and conditioning equipment. Known for building home gyms, smith machines, racks, and other fitness related equipment, they have expanded their sales worldwide, selling to over 100 countries.

The Body Solid seated calf raise exercise machine is made with an ergonomic design that focuses on burning your calf muscles while reducing the stress on the ball of your foot. It is made out of 11-gauge heavy steel making the machine rust and scratch proof so you know the equipment will last for a long time.

It is adjustable to your desired leg heights, perfect short and tall people. With thick and comfortable knee and seats pads, The Body Solid Seated Calf Raise Exercise Machine is an affordable calf raise machine for your home gyms.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Great design to hold weights

Cons

  • Expensive adapter sleeves
XMark 11-Gauge Seated Calf Raise with Height Adjustable Swiveling Thigh Pads, Dual Olympic Weight Posts, and Wide, Textured Non-Slip Foot Brace Bar XM-7613

Best Olympic

#2- XMark 11-Gauge Seated Calf Raise with Height Adjustable Swiveling Thigh Pads, Dual Olympic Weight...

See latest price

XMark focuses on exceeding expectations of the fitness industry. From the attention to detail on all their equipment to be responsive to all your needs, they focus on delivering an exceptional customer experience to you. 

Known for their craftsmanship and functionality of each of their products, you know that all their fitness equipment will be of high quality.

The XMark Seated Calf Raise Machine is a great way to build powerful and strong calves. Made with a 11-gauge 2” x 3” steel construction and finished with a baked powder coat finish, making the whole equipment scratch and rust resistant.

With ultra thick 3” wear and tear and sweat resistant Duracraft vinyl cushions, you will be able to perform calf raises and exercises without any pain.

Designed with height-adjusting thigh pads which can rotate with you, it is perfect for all different types of people whether you’re short or tall.

If you’re looking for a calf raise machine that can hold olympic plates, then we recommend having a look at XMark Seated Calf Raise Machine.

Pros

  • Simple, Durable, and Effective Design
  • Olympic Plates Compatible
  • No additional costs for sleeves

Cons

  • Fastening may need some extra attention
Deltech Fitness Seated Calf Machine

Best Comfortable

#3- Deltech Fitness Seated Calf Machine

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Deltech Fitness specializes in weight training products and has a reputation for durability and quality. Focusing on supporting a robust strength training program, their product lines include power racks, leg machines, calf machines, lat machines, or other products that can help you reach your fitness goals.

The Deltech Fitness Seated Calf Machine can hold up to 500lbs of weight, making it perfect for beginners to professional bodybuilders. Made out of a heavy gauge steel tubing and finished with a tough powdercoat it is able to resist scratches and rust. 

The leg pads and seat cushion are made using high density foam mixed with sweat resistance top grade vinyl that prevents your slipping when you’re pushing yourself. This includes a textured foot rest that helps improve traction on your feet.

If you’re looking for a comfortable calf raise machine, we recommend having a look at Deltech Fitness Seated Calf Machine.

Pros

  • Olympic Weight Compatible
  • Non slip cushions and foot rest
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Foot support can be weird and may place some extra stress on the knees
Valor Fitness CC-5 Seated Calf Machine Home Gym Equipment Leg Exercise Strength Training Workout Raises Strengthen Calves and Legs

Best Beginner

#4- Valor Fitness CC-5 Seated Calf Machine Home Gym Equipment Leg Exercise Strength Training Workout...

See latest price

Valor Fitness is committed to providing Home Fitness and Cross Training enthusiasts the best products available. This is seen by their 400+ product line offers that caters to fitness professionals, gym, studios, and home users.

The Valor Fitness Seated Calf Raise Machine is made using 12 gauge steel that provides you the durability and resistance against rust and scratches. While the diamond plated foot plates provide you the stability to perform calf raises and target your calf muscles.

It has steel popper pins and knee pads that can be adjusted to 5 horizontal positions and 6 vertical positions allowing you to find the perfect position and height to allow you to perform the calf raise exercises.

It can hold up to 350 lbs of weight and is great for beginners looking to increase the size and strengths of their calves. If you’re just starting out and want to build your calf strength, we recommend you having a look at Valor Fitness Seated Calf Machine.

Pros

  • Heavy Duty and Durable
  • Great Design

Cons

  • Quality is not the best compared to other competitors on this list
Body-Solid Leverage Squat and Calf Raise Machine (GSCL360)

Best All-Around

#5- Body-Solid Leverage Squat and Calf Raise Machine (GSCL360)

See latest price

Body Solid is an American distributor and manufacturer of home and commercial strength and conditioning equipment. Known for building home gyms, smith machines, racks, and other fitness related equipment, they have expanded their sales worldwide, selling to over 100 countries.

The Body Solid Standing Calf Raise machine supports over 800lbs of weight. Made out of heavy gauge steel and diamond foot platform allows you to perform the calf raise exercises with confidence.

With additional DuraFirm Pads made with extra padding that can be conformed to your shoulders allowing you to lift heavy weights for your calf raise with ease. It also includes a 20 degree platform to help develop your quads and glutes.

If you’re looking to build your thighs, glutes, lower back, and calves, we recommend you checking out Body-Solid Leverage Squat and Calf Raise Machine for a complete leg workout machine.

Pros

  • Versatile in the number of exercises
  • DuraFirm Pads made with extra padding that can be conformed to your shoulders
  •  Made out of heavy gauge steel and diamond foot platform

Cons

  • Expensive
  • May wobble
Powertec Fitness Levergym Squat/Calf Black

Best Compact

#6- Powertec Fitness Levergym Squat/Calf Black

See latest price

Powertec is the leader and pioneer in innovative strength equipment for home and light commercial use. Used by both fitness enthusiasts and professional athletes, they have become one of the best commercial quality gym equipment retailers due to the amount of customizations and accessory modularizations that they can provide, at an affordable price.

The Powertec Fitness Calf Raise Machine is designed to maximize your calf training by providing you with a lever arm and a footplate at an optimal angle that reduces stress and press on your lower back and knees. This allows all the force to be on the calves resulting in thicker looking muscles.

It has a maximum weight capacity of 500 lbs which is perfect for both beginners and advanced lifters. Made with 12 gauge steel and industrial grade materials, you can train with confidence knowing the calf raise machine will be durable and stable.

If you’re looking for a compact calf raise machine, we recommend you having a look at Powertec Fitness Levergym Squat/Calf Black.

Pros

  • Flat foot support puts less stress on shoulders and knees
  • Shoulder pads are padded and denser

Cons

  • Foot support needs a bit more grip
TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block Bearings

Best Basic

#7- TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block Bearings

See latest price

TDS Fitness Equipment is known for its heavy duty fitness equipment that they produce and source. Continually searching for new ways to improve your equipment performance and ease of use. 

The TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block Bearings is one of the highest weight capacity calf raise machines on the market. It is an affordable machine that provides everything you need to get your calf muscles big and strong.

With a 3” thick stitched padding for both the seat and thighs, it’s perfect for individuals who want the cushion and control of moving heavy weights without it hurting.

With the ability to use Olympic and standard weight pegs, we recommend you checking out the TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block Bearings if you are looking for an affordable and high-weight capacity calf raising machine,

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Special Rubber Grip to prevent machine from sliding
  • Adjustable for all heights
  • 800 lb weight capacity

Cons

  • No customizations
  • Not as many adjustable features

Calf Raise Machine Buying Guide

What Is A Calf Raise Machine

A calf raise machine is a machine designed to build muscle mass on your calves. Focusing on muscle contraction where you point your toes away from your legs, making your calves lift a form of resistance.

A calf machine can be either standing or sitting. The difference is the resistance and weight capacity you can place on the machine. Most calf raises provide a place where you can add or subtract the weight for the movement.

Calf machines are great for progressive overloading that makes your calf muscles grow.

The Benefits Of Using A Calf Raise Machine

Ankle Strength and Stability

Your body is made of more than muscles. It has ligaments, tendons, joints, and bones that need to have constant light stress to ensure it stays strong. A calf raise machine helps improve your lower body, everything from balancing to walking, resulting in an increase of quality of life.

Exercise Control

Unlike most free weight exercises, the calf raise machine provides you with the control on how much weight and the range of motion you want to perform on the calf raise machine. 

This allows you to monitor and gauge how your calf feels at a certain weight and resistance, reducing any painful or nagging injuries. It is also a great way to rehab and build back up your leg strength.

Improve Your Running and Sprinting Performance

With stronger and more explosive calves, stable ankles, and a better mind to muscle connection with your legs, you will find that you will be able to run faster. As you produce more force from your feet, you’ll be able to stride further faster.

Increase Calf Muscle Mass and Size

As you begin to progressively overload your calves with higher resistance, intensity, and number or reps, your calf muscles will eventually grow bigger and stronger. You will see visible resistance the more and more you train them.

Compact

The calf raise machine is a very compact piece of equipment. It can be used quickly to get in and out with a calf workout without spending a lot of time. It can be moved and tucked into a corner when it isn’t used. A great way to build up your legs at the comforts of your own home.

What To Look For When Purchasing A Calf Raise Machine

Budget

There are affordable calf raise machines that have basic functionality but provide everything you need to get bigger calves. While there are higher price points that have more additional features that allow you to do more to get stronger and thicker calves.

Figure out your price point and your objective. We recommend any calf raises below $300.

Quality

The materials, structure, and setup must be comfortable and durable. Make sure there is thick padding on the seat and knees ensuring that the only good pain is coming from your calves. Look for quality leather, sturdy metal frame, and thick padding.

Weight Capacity

The higher the weight capacity the better. This is because it will be more stable and less likely to wobble and break down.

Make sure your calf raises are able to hold at least 200 lbs as you will probably progress up to that weight the more and more you perform the calf raise exercise.

Size and Space

If you’re tight on space, have a look at the seated calf raise machine. Most calf raise machines do not take a lot of space and at most take up to four feet in all directions. They can also be tucked into a corner when you aren’t using it.

Leg Focused

If you’re looking to build a lot of volume on the calves or looking for a post workout burn, understand which type of calf raise machine you want to purchase. Figure out your objective for the machine and purchase whatever is necessary for your goals.

How To Use A Calf Raise Machine

Calf raise machines are very simple to use. After testing it out a few times, you can have proper form within a few reps and then you may be able to progress in building bigger and stronger calves

Seated Calf Raise Machine

All you have to do is sit down. Once you get on the seat, adjust the knee pads to the height where they rest tightly on your thighs.

Before you begin, you should be already feeling tension from the load. Mistakes beginners make is putting the pads too high which makes it hard to lift and lower the weight properly.

Once you’re comfortable, begin flexing your calf muscles like you’re going on your tippy toes. Continue with that motion between extension and contraction to your desired rep.

When you finish your set, re-rack it by lifting it back to its original position, letting the load come down to it’s original position.

Then you remove your legs from underneath the knee pads to get up

Standing Calf Raise Machine

Standing calf raise machines is where you stand up on a slightly raised platform. Instead of sitting down, the standing calf raise involves using your whole body. 

As you fit your shoulders under the padding, this allows your shoulders and back to take more of the load allowing you to move heavier weights.

To begin, all you have to do is raise your body by moving into a tippy toe position, then lower your body past horizontal so your calves are extended. Your body should be staying rigid through the entire rep.

Once you go between fully extended and fully contracted, that will be one rep. To re-rack when you’ve finished your set, bend your knees to take your shoulders out of the pads. Then step down and off from the platform.

FAQs for Calf Raise Machines

Why Is My Calf Size Not Getting Bigger

Many people struggle with creating nicely developed calves since there is a big disconnect between wanting a well defined set of calves and actually training them properly. 
Here are big errors that most people make when training calves and why you aren’t seeing any results in your calf definition:
Training calves at the end of the workout is a big mistake that most people make. This is because you’re already tired and you won’t be able to lift heavier weights opposed to the beginning of the workout.
Only performing the usual range between 10 to 15 reps. Calves are built under pressure and they are already being used when you’re walking. Try to aim between 25 to 35 reps and make sure you’re contracting and extending the full range of motion.

Seated Vs Standing Calf Raise Machines – Which is the best?

Seated Calf Machines are great because you are in a sitting position. This allows you to lock out other parts of the body so you focus on contracting and extending your calves. This allows the machine to target the soleus calf muscle better.
It is also compact and more affordable than standing ones. However, it doesn’t target the gastrocnemius calf muscle as much.
Standing Calf Machines allow you to load more onto the calves. It targets the gastrocnemius muscle, the larger calf muscle resulting in more visible gains and strength. However you cannot unlock other parts of your body as most of the stress is on your shoulders, back, arms, and core.

Conclusion

When choosing a Calf Raise Machine, there are many factors to consider. The room size and height, budget, your fitness level, and overall space.

However, out of the ten Calf Raise Machines that we got to test and research, we recommend the TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block Bearings because it is affordable and provides all the functionalities needed to build bigger and stronger calves.

The TDS Super Seated Calf Unit w/Pillow Block Bearings is one of the highest weight capacity calf raise machines on the market. It is an affordable machine that provides everything you need to get your calf muscles big and strong.

With a 3” thick stitched padding for both the seat and thighs, it’s perfect for individuals who want the cushion and control of moving heavy weights without it hurting.

If you’re looking for a standing calf raise machine instead, we recommend Powertec Fitness Levergym Squat/Calf Black

The Powertec Fitness Calf Raise Machine is designed to maximize your calf training by providing you with a lever arm and a footplate at an optimal angle that reduces stress and press on your lower back and knees. This allows all the force to be on the calves resulting in thicker looking muscles.

It has a maximum weight capacity of 500 lbs which is perfect for both beginners and advanced lifters. Made with 12 gauge steel and industrial grade materials, you can train with confidence knowing the calf raise machine will be durable and stable.

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About Julien

Hey! Thanks for being here. I’ve been active pretty much my whole life and I discovered Crossfit about 5 years ago. I want to help you improve your Crossfit performances by giving tips on specific movements, workouts and equipment. You have a question? Get in touch!