- to strike with the foot or feet: to kick the ball; to kick someone in the shins.
- to drive, force, make, etc., by or as if by kicks.
- Football. to score (a field goal or a conversion) by place-kicking or drop-kicking the ball.
- Informal. to make (a car) increase in speed, especially in auto racing: He kicked his car into high gear.
- to strike in recoiling: The gun kicked his shoulder.
- Slang. to give up or break (a drug addiction): Has he kicked the habit?
- Poker. raise(def 24).
- Chiefly South Atlantic States. to reject as a suitor; jilt: He courted her for two years—then she kicked him.
- to make a rapid, forceful thrust with the foot or feet: He kicked at the ball. You have to kick rapidly when using a crawl stroke.
- to have a tendency to strike with the foot or feet: That horse kicks when you walk into his stall.
- Informal. to resist, object, or complain: What's he got to kick about?
- to recoil, as a firearm when fired.
- to be actively or vigorously involved: He's still alive and kicking.
- the act of kicking; a blow or thrust with the foot or feet.
- power or disposition to kick: That horse has a mean kick.
- Informal. an objection or complaint.
- thrill; pleasurable excitement: His biggest kick comes from telling about the victory.
- a strong but temporary interest, often an activity: Making mobiles is his latest kick.
- a stimulating or intoxicating quality in alcoholic drink.
- vim, vigor, or energy.
- an instance of kicking the ball.
- any method of kicking the ball: place kick.
- a kicked ball.
- the distance such a ball travels.
- a turn at kicking the ball.
- a recoil, as of a gun.
- Slang. a pocket: He kept his wallet in his side kick.
- kicks, Slang. shoe(def 1).
- kick about, to move from place to place frequently: He kicked about a good deal before settling down.
- kick around, Informal.
- to treat (someone) harshly or inconsiderately.
- to consider, discuss, or speculate about (a proposal, project, etc.): We kicked around various ideas for raising money.
- to experiment with.
- to pass time idly; wander from place to place aimlessly: We just kicked around for a year after college.
- to remain unused, unemployed, or unnoticed: The script has been kicking around for years.
- kick back,
- to recoil, especially vigorously or unexpectedly.
- Informal.to give someone a kickback.
- Slang.to return (stolen property, money, etc.) to the owner.
- to relax: Let's just kick back and enjoy the weekend.
- kick in,
- to contribute one's share, especially in money.
- Slang.to die.
- to become operational; activate; go into effect: The air conditioning kicks in when the temperature reaches 80°F.
- kick off,
- Football.to begin play or begin play again by a kickoff: The Giants won the toss and elected to kick off.
- Slang.to die.
- to initiate (an undertaking, meeting, etc.); begin: A rally tomorrow night will kick off the campaign.
- kick on, to switch on; turn on: He kicked on the motor and we began to move.
- kick out, Informal.
- to oust or eject: They have been kicked out of the country club.
- to fail; give out: The power kicked out and the room went black.
- to separate off, as for review or inspection: The computer kicked out the information in a split second.
- Surfing.to turn a surfboard by shifting the weight to the rear, causing the surfboard to come down over the top of a wave, in order to stop a ride.
- kick over, Informal. (of an internal-combustion engine) to begin ignition; turn over: The engine kicked over a few times but we couldn't get it started.
- kick up,
- to drive or force upward by kicking.
- to stir up (trouble); make or cause (a disturbance, scene, etc.): They kicked up a tremendous row.
- (especially of a machine part) to move rapidly upward: The lever kicks up, engaging the gear.
- kip5(def 2).
- kick ass, Slang: Vulgar.
- to act harshly or use force in order to gain a desired result.
- to defeat soundly.
- kick in the ass, Slang: Vulgar. kick(def 35a).
- kick in the pants, Informal.
- someone or something that is very exciting, enjoyable, amusing, etc.: I think you'll like her, she's a real kick in the pants.
- kick(def 36).
- kick in the teeth, an abrupt, often humiliating setback; rebuff: Her refusal even to talk to me was a kick in the teeth.
- kick over the traces. trace2(def 3).
- kick the bucket, Slang. bucket(def 15).
- kick the tin, Australian. to give a donation; contribute.
- kick upstairs. upstairs(def 8).
Origin of kick
Synonyms for kickSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
- up the stairs; to or on an upper floor.
- Informal. in the mind: to be a little weak upstairs.
- to or at a higher level of authority: You may have to take the matter upstairs.
- Military Slang. at or to a higher level in the air.
- Also up·stair. of, relating to, or situated on an upper floor: an upstairs window; an upstairs apartment.
- (usually used with a singular verb) an upper story or stories; the part of a building or house that is above the ground floor: The upstairs of this house is entirely rented.
- a higher command or level of authority: We can't take action till we have approval from upstairs.
- kick upstairs, to promote (a person) to a higher position, usually having less authority, in order to be rid of him or her.
Origin of upstairs
- (tr, adverb) informal to promote to a nominally higher but effectively powerless position
- (tr) to drive or impel with the foot
- (tr) to hit with the foot or feet
- (intr) to strike out or thrash about with the feet, as in fighting or swimming
- (intr) to raise a leg high, as in dancing
- (of a gun, etc) to recoil or strike in recoiling when fired
- (tr) rugby
- to make (a conversion or a drop goal) by means of a kick
- to score (a goal) by means of a kicked conversion
- (tr) soccer to score (a goal) by a kick
- (intr) athletics to put on a sudden spurt
- (intr) to make a sudden violent movement
- (intr) cricket (of a ball) to rear up sharply
- (intr sometimes foll by against) informal to object or resist
- (intr) informal to be active and in good health (esp in the phrase alive and kicking)
- informal to change gear in (a car, esp a racing car)he kicked into third and passed the bigger car
- (tr) informal to free oneself of (an addiction, etc)to kick heroin; to kick the habit
- kick against the pricks See prick (def. 20)
- kick into touch
- rugby soccerto kick the ball out of the playing area and into touchSee touch (def. 15)
- informalto take some temporizing action so that a problem is shelved or a decision postponed
- kick one's heels to wait or be kept waiting
- kick over the traces See trace 2 (def. 3)
- kick the bucket slang to die
- kick up one's heels informal to enjoy oneself without inhibition
- a thrust or blow with the foot
- any of certain rhythmic leg movements used in swimming
- the recoil of a gun or other firearm
- informal a stimulating or exciting quality or effect (esp in the phrases get a kick out of or for kicks)
- athletics a sudden spurt, acceleration, or boost
- a sudden violent movement
- informal the sudden stimulating or intoxicating effect of strong alcoholic drink or certain drugs
- informal power or force
- slang a temporary enthusiasmhe's on a new kick every week
- kick in the pants slang
- a reprimand or scolding designed to produce greater effort, enthusiasm, etc, in the person receiving it
- a setback or disappointment
- kick in the teeth slang a humiliating rebuff
Word Origin for kick
- up the stairs; to or on an upper floor or level
- informal to or into a higher rank or office
- informal in the minda little weak upstairs
- kick upstairs informal to promote to a higher rank or position, esp one that carries less power
- an upper floor or level
- (as modifier)an upstairs room
- British informal, old-fashioned the masters and mistresses of a household collectively, esp of a large houseCompare downstairs (def. 3)
late 14c., "to strike out with the foot" (earliest in biblical phrase now usually rendered as kick against the pricks), of uncertain origin, perhaps from Old Norse kikna "bend backwards, sink at the knees." "The doubts OED has about the Scandinavian origin of kick are probably unfounded" [Liberman]. Related: Kicked; kicking.
Figurative sense of "complain, protest, rebel against" (late 14c.) probably is from the Bible verse. Slang sense of "die" is attested from 1725 (kick the wind was slang for "be hanged," 1590s; see also bucket). Meaning "to end one's drug habit" is from 1936. Kick in "contribute" is from 1908; kick out "expel" is from 1690s. To kick oneself in self-reproach is from 1891. The children's game of kick the can is attested from 1891.
1590s (adj.), from up + stairs (see stair). The noun is first attested 1872. Meaning "characteristic of upstairs life" (in private rooms of a household, as opposed to servants' quarters) is recorded from 1942.
He [Halifax] had said he had known many kicked down stairs, but he never knew any kicked up stairs before. [Gilbert Burnet, supplement to "History of My own Time," from his original memoirs, c.1697]
1520s, from kick (v.). Meaning "recoil (of a gun) when fired" is from 1826. Meaning "surge or fit of pleasure" (often as kicks) is from 1941; originally literally, "stimulation from liquor or drugs" (1844). The kick "the fashion" is c.1700.
Promote someone to a higher but less desirable position, especially one with less authority. For example, Paul never forgave the company for kicking him upstairs at age 55. This expression alludes to its antonym, kick downstairs, simply meaning “eject.” [Mid-1900s]
In addition to the idioms beginning with kick
- kick a habit
- kick around
- kick ass
- kick back
- kick in
- kick in the pants, a
- kick it
- kick off
- kick oneself
- kick out
- kick over the traces
- kick the bucket
- kick the habit
- kick up
- kick up a fuss
- kick up one's heels
- kick upstairs
- alive and kicking
- for fun (kicks)
- get a bang (kick) out of
see kick upstairs.