the hypothetical fall of a body such that the only force acting upon it is that of gravity.
the part of a parachute jump that precedes the opening of the parachute.
a decline, especially a sudden or rapid decline, as in value or prestige, that appears to be endless or bottomless: The economy was in a free fall all winter.
- Also free-fall (for defs. 1, 2).
Other definitions for free-fall (2 of 2)
(of parachutists) to descend initially, as for a designated interval, in a free fall: The jumpers were required to free-fall for eight seconds.
denoting or suggesting a free fall: a free-fall recession.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use free fall in a sentence
Huawei's latest Q4 2020 numbers show its phone sales in free fall, dropping 42 percent year-over-year.Huawei’s HarmonyOS: “Fake it till you make it” meets OS development | Ron Amadeo | February 2, 2021 | Ars Technica
One of the largest contributors to GDP, tourism accounts for more than 8% of Mexico’s economic output and provides millions of jobs, but as international travel plummets thanks to the pandemic, the industry is in free fall.Tourists Are Returning to Cancún. But Workers' Fears About COVID-19 Never Went Away | Oscar Lopez / Cancún, Mexico | January 11, 2021 | Time
The value of one of the world’s most valuable cryptocurrencies is crashing and a recently filed SEC complaint is at the root of the free fall.XRP cryptocurrency crashes following announcement of SEC suit against Ripple | Lucas Matney | December 23, 2020 | TechCrunch
Over the course of 2020, FiveThirtyEight’s visual journalists covered a historic election, an unprecedented year in sports, a raging pandemic and an economy in free fall.The 40 Weirdest (And Best) Charts We Made In This Long, Strange Year | Ryan Best (email@example.com) | December 21, 2020 | FiveThirtyEight
Clouds moving in should keep the free fall from continuing, but some colder spots could hit the low 20s or so.PM Update: Some refreezing concern through a cold night, and it’s still chilly Friday | Ian Livingston | December 17, 2020 | Washington Post
She had supported Stern when his own career had first been in gestation and then later in free-fall.
Jackson Jr., son of the legendary minister, won reelection in November despite a career and personal life in seeming free-fall.
Riding a warg, the Pale Orc watches as the company awaits their free-fall into death.‘The Hobbit’: 19 Changes from J.R.R. Tolkien’s Novel to Peter Jackson’s Movie | Anna Klassen | December 14, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST
She went into position one without prompting as they jumped and began to free-fall.Exclusive Photo: Gabrielle Giffords’s Navy SEAL Skydive | Michael Daly | February 27, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST
I managed to get the gravity turned off and gave them a lesson in free-fall fighting.Danger in Deep Space | Carey Rockwell
Tom couldn't even go into free-fall for ten minutes without getting sick all over the place.Gold in the Sky | Alan Edward Nourse
For the first eight hours of free fall, after the engines had cut out, Tom was violently ill.Gold in the Sky | Alan Edward Nourse
There was a moment of free-fall, then the drive engine came on and the grav-field equilibrated.The Dueling Machine | Benjamin William Bova
He knew there would be fifty seconds of free-fall before the rockets fired again.Pushbutton War | Joseph P. Martino
British Dictionary definitions for free fall
free descent of a body in which the gravitational force is the only force acting on it
the part of a parachute descent before the parachute opens
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
Cultural definitions for free fall
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Other Idioms and Phrases with free fall
A rapid, uncontrolled decline, as in The markets threatened to go into free fall and we came close to outright panic. This term transfers the aeronautical meaning of a free fall, that is, “a fall through the air without any impedance, such as a parachute,” to other kinds of precipitous drop. [Second half of 1900s]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.