Meaning of “kick” in the English Dictionary

"kick" in British English

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uk /kɪk/ us /kɪk/

A1 [ I or T ] to hit someone or something with the foot, or to move the feet and legs suddenly and violently:

I kicked the ball as hard as I could.
He was accused of kicking a man in the face.
She felt the baby kicking inside her.

[ I ] If a gun kicks, it jumps back suddenly and with force when the gun is fired.

be kicking yourself/could have kicked yourself

C2 used to say that you are very annoyed with yourself because you have done something stupid or missed a chance:

When I realized what I'd done I could have kicked myself.
They must be kicking themselves for selling their shares too early.

More examples

  • She kicked the children's ball so powerfully that it flew over the hedge.
  • The football player kicked the ball slap into the middle of the net.
  • Please stop kicking the door like that - open it properly
  • I saw her kick the cat when she thought no one was looking.
  • The other boys started to punch and kick him.


uk /kɪk/ us /kɪk/

kick noun (HIT)

A2 [ C ] the action of kicking something:

He gave the ball a good kick.

More examples

  • She aimed a kick at my shins.
  • The footballer appealed to the referee for a free kick.
  • His penalty kick placed the ball decisively in the back of the net.
  • He missed that kick literally by miles.
  • He gave the machine a kick.

(Definition of “kick” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"kick" in American English

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kickverb [ I/T ]

us /kɪk/

kick verb [ I/T ] (HIT)

to hit someone or something with the foot, or to move the feet and legs suddenly and violently:

[ T ] I kicked the ball as hard as I could.
[ I ] I kicked at the leaves, hoping to find the ring I dropped.


us /kɪk/

kick noun (EXCITEMENT)

[ C ] a strong feeling of excitement and pleasure:

We got a kick out of that show.

kick noun (INTEREST)

[ C usually sing ] a new interest, esp. one that does not last long:

He’s been on an exercise kick lately.

(Definition of “kick” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"kick" in Business English

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kickverb [ T ]

uk /kɪk/ us
kick sth into touch also kick sth into the long grass UK

to decide not to deal with a problem, or not deal with it immediately:

They decided to kick the idea of introducing a congestion charge into touch.
kick the tyres UK US kick the tires

to try something or examine it carefully before you buy it:

Come and kick the tires on this latest version of the software.
kick sb upstairs informal

to give someone a new job that seems more powerful but is really less powerful, usually in order to stop them causing trouble for you:

He was a lousy salesman, so he was kicked upstairs to a desk job.
kick sth upstairs informal

to send information or a decision to someone in a higher position:

We didn't have the authority to hire anyone, so the whole matter was kicked upstairs.

(Definition of “kick” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)