[ ath-let-iks ]
See synonyms for athletics on
  1. (usually used with a plural verb) athletic sports, as running, rowing, or boxing.

  2. British. track-and-field events.

  1. (usually used with a singular verb) the practice of athletic exercises; the principles of athletic training.

Origin of athletics

First recorded in 1595–1605; see origin at athletic, -ics

pronunciation note For athletics

See athlete.

Words Nearby athletics Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use athletics in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for athletics


/ (æθˈlɛtɪks) /

noun(functioning as plural or singular)
    • track and field events

    • (as modifier): an athletics meeting

  1. sports or exercises engaged in by athletes

  1. the theory or practice of athletic activities and training

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012