Vince Gironda High Pull

Q: I got Volume 2 from the other day, and it looks great. I have questions about two of the exercises you list. In the Insulin/Testosterone pump and pre-stretch exercise list, you include ‘barbell high pulls’ for the deltoids.

I understand high pulls to be a power clean without catching the barbell at the top: an exercise where you use a clean grip and start either on the floor or from a hang and explosively pull the bar to chest level or so. Is that the exercise you mean? I never thought of that as a pump and pre-stretch movement.

Also, is the Gironda swing lateral the movement where one arm goes out to the side and the other crosses the body at the same time? If so, that’s a great exercise.

Thank you for any response,

My Answer- Yes, you can use barbell high pulls as a pump movement for the deltoids, as long as you perform high reps in good form. In the Insulin/Testosterone workout, you can perform either a pumping exercise or a stretch exercise for a muscle group. There are no good stretching movements for the deltoids, however, so you simply perform high reps on shoulder exercises, such laterals and high pulls.

The high pull that I’m referring to, however, is not the Olympic version, but the bodybuilding version. The Vince Gironda high pull is a variation of the upright barbell row done from the hang position. Here’s a description of the VG high pull from the Iron Guru website.

  • Overhand grip on the bar about shoulder-width apart.
  • At the “low position” the bar rests on the front of the thighs and the elbows are slightly bent.
  • With the elbows pulled high the bar is raised to about the top of your head.
  • At the raised position, the bar should be about 12 inches (30 cm) in front of the head.

And yes, the swing lateral is exactly as you describe:


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