The tibialis anterior is an oft-overlooked muscle. It is your shin muscle, the muscle on the front of your lower leg. The tibialis anterior is responsible for dorsal flexion of your ankle joint -- pulling the top of your foot toward your shin. To work this muscle, perform a reverse calf raise. Although not many exercise machines target the tibialis anterior specifically, certain ones do work this muscle while targeting others. Consult your doctor before beginning any new exercise routine.
You aren't likely to find this strength machine in many gyms -- but it does exist, and its only function is to work the tibialis anterior muscle. It is a small device with handles that hold weight plates. Sit on a bench and set the dorsiflexion machine at your feet. Place your heels on the pedal and slide the top of your feet under the padded bar. Lift the front of your feet up as far as you can, keeping your heels on the pedal. Slowly lower until your toes point downward and repeat.
The Smith machine is one of the most versatile pieces of fitness equipment in the gym. To work your tibialis anterior on the Smith machine, place an aerobic step under the bar. Position the bar across your shoulders and stand on the aerobic step with your heels on the platform and the balls of your feet hanging off. Raise your toes as high as you can off the ground, lifting up onto your heels. Slowly lower and repeat.
The leg press machine is commonly used to work the calf muscles, and it can be used in a similar manner to target the tibialis anterior muscle. Sit in the leg press machine and place your feet at the top of the foot plate with your toes extended past the edge. Keep your legs straight; do not bend your knees. Push through your heels, pulling the front of your foot back toward your body. Slowly lower and repeat.
Standing Calf Machine
With a slight adjustment of your body position, you can use a standing calf raise machine to target the tibialis anterior muscle. Instead of facing forward in the machine, turn around and face away from it. Place your heels on the platform with your toes hanging off. Position the pads on your shoulders. Lift your toes into the air as high as you can. Slowly lower and repeat.