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Manual for Gym Instructions
Posted Monday, October 23, 2006

Filed under Training

(IronMan Magazine Jan 1977 Vol. 36 No. 2)

1. Develop illusion of width across chest (parallel dips, dip slide or ped push-ups.)

2. Increase chest measurement by accentuating taper (Terris Major) with short pull (chest concave, elbows wide) not lats

3. Bring up arm measurement with peak bicep (Spider bench) double contraction

4. Pull out middle tricep for corresponding line of measurement on tape, with pulley push down (elbows firm to body and thumbs on top of bar.)

5. Bring out dramatic illusion of width by using DB laterals or shoulder width upright rowing. Laterals are tilted down (front bell - elbows bent.)

6. Give no abdominal work of any kind or you will stop all muscle growth.

7. Give forearm work seated on bench (straddle and actually lay bar on bench each rep (singles).) Thumbs must be under bar. Forearms and wrists are on top of thighs with wrists hanging over knees.

8. Reverse BB curls are done with collar width grip and bar rubs body on the curl and down. Hacks are done in Frog Squat position, heels together and back under hips. Toes are wide - 12 inches.

9. Calves are always done with shoes 4" wide and come up on big toe drawing heel together at top of movement (knees are unlocked).

Nutrition will not be discussed because nutrition is highly individualized.

Do not deviate from these exercises because anything other than this routine will not cause super fast visual results.

Filed under Back Building, Vince's Gym

Vince, I have to tell you that you are the greatest trainer ever. After spending three weeks at “Vince’s” I learned more than I would have in a lifetime training in my hometown.

Thank you for helping me get on the right track. I am still improving almost every workout, but I need a little advice about back building.

I notice that I neither have width or thickness in my lats. Any help would be appreciated.

Glad you enjoyed your stay John.

I liked working with you because you listened so diligently.

With regard to your back I suggest you train the area twice a week but use three different back routines (rotating them in order).

Workout No. One. Wide grip chins (to front), T-Bar Rows, Long Floor Pulley Rows

Workout No. Two. Racing-dive lat pulls, Close grip chin, Dumbell Rowing

Workout No. Three. Medium grip chin, Close grip pulldowns to chest, Hyper extensions.

Start with three sets of each exercise (eight reps) and work up to five sets of each.

As you get into the program decrease the rest time between sets as much as possible but not so much as to allow deep breathing to interfere with exercise performance.


Posted Friday, February 10, 2006

Filed under Training

(Musclemag Oct'84)

I am from the school of basics when it comes to bodybuilding. I have been training since my teens in the mid sixties alwayss using heavy weights and basic exercises. My system has always been Press Behind Neck, Squats, Bench Press, Rowing and barbell curls. I perform eight sets of five reps for all exercises and my workouts take about 3 hours. I do have some fair size but I do not really look impressive. Any suggestions?

For someone who has been training for around twenty years you better have gotten something from your training. Your routine stinks! And the worst thing is that you take three hours to do it. Limited routines such as yours are OK for short periods but to do the same basics for twenty years!!! Where have you been?

Get more variety in your training and increase the reps to 8-10. I suggest you split a routine based on working each muscle group with three different exercises at least, maybe four. If you want shape and impressiveness then I suggest you use specific isolation exercises. Kill your love affair with the basics. After twenty years it's about time.

Posted Friday, November 04, 2005

Filed under Chest

by Vince Gironda

I do not think I have seen six men in my life do a chin properly. Don Howorth was one of them. Don pulled up with his chest high and touched his chest to the bar almost as low as his low Pec line. His elbows were drawn down to his sides, touching his lats, and with the chest high and the shoulders down and back, he contracted his lats to the maximum.

If you look up the function of the lat in any Kinesiology book, it will show that the lat – in the fully contracted position – the shoulders are drawn down and back! Round the back and shoulders forward, and you shift to the Teres major muscles. Also, if you do not arch your back to full contraction, you will not develop any of the fibres across the back that attach to the spine. This will give you a flat underdeveloped look with no thickness.

This is how you do the chin: Reach up and grasp the chinning bar, but not too wide…closer than you ordinarily do them, because the lats are partially contracted in a wide grip. Next, stand on a box so that you can jump up into the contracted position and hold at the top for a split second. Now, lower your body and stand on the box (Do singles). Jump up again and touch your low pec to the bar and arch the back. Most important – elbows must touch the sides in the top or contracted position to achieve maximum contraction.

The next most abused exercise is the parallel dip for pec development. The average bodybuilder does this exercise with his elbows back and his chest up and the back arched. Also, he does not drop down low enough, plus his body usually swings due to excessive speed in pec – forming the exercise. The proper way to dip is as follows: Hands should be 32” wide, elbows straight out to the sides (never back), and chin on chest. Chest must be concave and back rounded, feet forward under the head. In short, the body is in a crescent shape. The bottom of the dipping movement is the most important part of the dip; the first 8-10 inches are very isolated pec and most important – dipping receives less help from the deltoid than any other pec exercise. Bench Press plus Incline Dumbell Press – knuckles not facing each other but forward, about 90 percent assistance from delts. The wider the parallel bar, the wider the stress on the pec where the pec disappears under the front deltoid. This gives the chest a greater illusion of width.

Here, in Vince’s Gym, we have V-shaped parallel dip bars and by just moving your hands back you get a wider portion of the pec. By the way, if you hump up your back at the top of the movement, you work the Serratus muscles very forcibly.

Gironda site links:


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