ESL Phrasal Verbs

Explanations of several "pull" phrasal verbs, with a printable worksheet.

click here to download this ESL phrasal verbs worksheet (FREE!)


“Pull” Phrasal Verbs - Definitions

pull ahead: to move in the lead, to move ahead of the other people (in a race or contest, for example)

· The two drivers were neck in neck* for most of the race, and it wasn’t until the very end that one of them pulled ahead and won.


pull for: to support or cheer for a person/team

  • Most people were pulling for New Orleans to win the Super Bowl because they were the underdogs.
  • Even though I don’t really care about the Winter Olympics, I’m pulling for Canada to beat the US in the hockey championship because I’m Canadian.

pull (x) off: to accomplish something difficult

  • I couldn’t believe it! New Orleans pulled off the upset and won the Super Bowl!
  • Even though Canada was favored to beat the US, they weren’t able to pull it off and lost 2-1.

pull (x) over: to drive your car to the side of the road and stop (when a police officer turns on his/her lights, for example)

  • What’s that noise? Quick! Pull over! I think you have a flat tire!
  • The cop pulled me over because my tail light was out.

pull up: to drive your car (slowly) forward (when parking or stopping at a place, for example)

  • You’re not in the parking space yet. You need to pull up a little more.
  • If you don’t want to go inside the restaurant, you can just pull up to the drive-through window.

pull yourself together!: to calm down and stop panicking (you say this when someone is crying, yelling, or very scared, for example)

· I know you’re sad about breaking up with your girlfriend, but it’s already been
several weeks. You need to pull yourself together and get on with your life.
There are plenty of fish in the sea!*


*neck in neck = tied, very close to each other
*plenty of fish in the sea = many other suitable girlfriends/boyfriends


“Pull” Phrasal Verbs - Worksheet

Fill in the blanks with the correct words to complete these “pull” phrasal verbs.

1. Patrick (at a fast food restaurant): I’d like two hamburgers, medium fries, and a
small cola.

Clerk: That’s two hamburgers, medium fries, and a small cola. Your total is
$2.59. Please _______________ to the next window.

2. Wendy: Good luck at the tennis tournament this afternoon. We’ll all be in the
stands cheering and _______________ you to win!

3. Evan: You should slow down, Todd. There are a lot of police on this road. You
don’t want to get _________________.

4. Russia and Canada were tied in the Winter Olympics medal count with 20
medals each. However, after winning the skiing event, Russia _____________
and now has 21.

5. The Lakers were down by 20 points at the beginning of the fourth quarter, yet
they still managed to _______________ a victory, thanks to Kobe Bryant, who
scored 16 points in just 3 minutes.

6. Bill: Ahhhh! There’s a fire!!!!! Oh no!!!!! Wahhhhhh!!!!

Jane: Hey! You’ve got to ____________________! If we panic, we’ll never get
out of here. Quick, follow me out the fire escape!


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