exercise

noun
ex·​er·​cise | \ ˈek-sər-ˌsīz How to pronounce exercise (audio) \

Definition of exercise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the act of bringing into play or realizing in action : use the exercise of self-control
b : the discharge of an official function or professional occupation exercise of his judicial duties
c : the act or an instance of carrying out the terms of an agreement (such as an option) often used attributively an option's exercise price
2a : regular or repeated use of a faculty or bodily organ
b : bodily exertion for the sake of developing and maintaining physical fitness trying to get more exercise
3 : something performed or practiced in order to develop, improve, or display a specific capability or skill arithmetic exercises vocal exercises
4 : a performance or activity having a strongly marked secondary or ulterior aspect party politics has always been an exercise in compromise— H. S. Ashmore
5a : a maneuver, operation, or drill carried out for training and discipline naval exercises
b exercises plural : a program including speeches, announcements of awards and honors, and various traditional practices of secular or religious character commencement exercises

exercise

verb
exercised; exercising

Definition of exercise (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to make effective in action : use didn't exercise good judgment
b : to bring to bear : exert exercise influence
c : to implement the terms of exercise an option
2a : to use repeatedly in order to strengthen or develop exercise a muscle
b : to train by drills and maneuvers exercise troops
c : to put through exercises exercise the horses
3a : to engage the attention and effort of
b : to cause anxiety, alarm, or indignation in the issues exercising voters this year

intransitive verb

: to take exercise

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Other Words from exercise

Verb

exercisable \ ˈek-​sər-​ˌsī-​zə-​bəl How to pronounce exercisable (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for exercise

Synonyms: Noun

activity, conditioning, exertion

Synonyms: Verb

apply, exert, ply, put out, wield

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Examples of exercise in a Sentence

Noun

Get plenty of fresh air and exercise. Swimming is my favorite kind of exercise. She did stretching exercises before her daily run. Do the writing exercise at the end of each chapter. The negotiations have gotten nowhere, and I see no reason to continue with this pointless exercise.

Verb

It's important to exercise every day. He eats right and exercises regularly. Bicycle riding exercises the leg muscles. The stable boys exercise the horses every morning. He didn't exercise good judgment. We just need to exercise common sense. She has been reluctant to exercise her authority. Exercise caution when using these chemicals.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Russia and China have agreed to continue to conduct joint military exercises, as the interests of Russia and China (once far apart) begin to align in response to US military power and a bellicose President Donald Trump. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Russia, China become battle buddies at Vostok 2018," 16 Sep. 2018 The Air Force exercise will take place 13 miles east of Thunder Bay after 2 p.m. on Monday and will consist of inert bombs being dropped from an aircraft at a high altitude. Deasia Paige, Detroit Free Press, "Bayview Mackinac race, Air Force training exercise could collide," 13 July 2018 Here are her must-haves, and the easy exercises to go with them. Candace Braun Davison, House Beautiful, "Carrie Underwood's Trainer On The 3 Things You Need For An At-Home Gym," 13 July 2018 The Mazzarellas were two of five total teams at the exercise. Denise Coffey, Courant Community, "Amateur Radio Operators Practice For Emergencies," 3 July 2018 Although the exercise was also recommended by her doctor, Gould got involved because of her son, David. Janelle Walker, Elgin Courier-News, "Postponed Summer Solstice 5K in Elgin draws more participants, raises about $50,000, organizers say," 26 June 2018 And of course, drink enough water, eat well and exercise, make sure to get good quality sleep and surround yourself with positive, fun people. Jenna Rosenstein, Harper's BAZAAR, "Instagram Beauty Sensation @Gelcream Shares Her Anti-Aging Secrets," 6 Mar. 2019 This National Institutes of Health overview is a good place to read about vitamin D, increased exercise, increased socializing, and overall improvements to mental health that come with sunlight. Dan Nosowitz, Popular Mechanics, "Daylight Savings Time Is Actually a Good Thing," 4 Mar. 2019 Whole food, real food, exercise, moving, taking care of your stress level. Brittney Mcnamara, Teen Vogue, "Detox Diets Aren't Real or Healthy — and Body "Toxins" Don't Exist," 1 Jan. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

But Trump and Boulos both exercise a work hard, play hard ethos. Rose Minutaglio, Town & Country, "Inside Tiffany Trump's Relationship with New Boyfriend Michael Boulos," 18 Mar. 2019 The biggest thing that makes a difference in my looks—and my energy level—is exercising consistently. Taylore Glynn, Marie Claire, "Hailey Bieber: In Her Own Words," 11 Mar. 2019 There's a limit to how much artwork and exercise a person can do in prison, Dozier said in court hearings and letters to Clark County District Judge Jennifer Togliatti, who postponed his execution last year. NBC News, "Nevada execution in doubt after drug company sues to stop it," 11 July 2018 Our democracy rests on the ability of all individuals, regardless of race, income, or status, to exercise their right to vote. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "How Ohio's 'Use It or Lose It' Voter Purge Could Affect Other States," 11 June 2018 Eating healthier and exercising more can be time-consuming, but setting aside enough time for yourself is important to lead a healthier lifestyle. Isabel Garcia, Woman's Day, "10 Tips to Help You Conquer a Weight Loss Plateau," 10 Jan. 2019 Embrace and extend, Mountain View style Google is already a company that exercises considerable influence over the direction of the Web's development. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Google isn’t the company that we should have handed the Web over to," 17 Dec. 2018 As the November congressional midterm election grows closer, dozens of fashion insiders have launched initiatives to encourage people to exercise their right to vote. Amira Rasool, Teen Vogue, "“Model Citizens Vote” Enlisted Top Fashion Influencers to Encourage Millennials to Vote," 17 Aug. 2018 But what if people exercised more, some researchers asked. Gretchen Reynolds, New York Times, "Exercise May Aid in Weight Loss. Provided You Do Enough.," 4 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'exercise.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of exercise

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for exercise

Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French exercice, from Latin exercitium, from exercitare to train, exercise, frequentative of exercēre to train, occupy, from ex- + arcēre to enclose, hold off — more at ark

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Statistics for exercise

Last Updated

10 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for exercise

The first known use of exercise was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for exercise

exercise

noun

English Language Learners Definition of exercise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: physical activity that is done in order to become stronger and healthier
: a particular movement or series of movements done to become stronger and healthier
: something that is done or practiced to develop a particular skill

exercise

verb

English Language Learners Definition of exercise (Entry 2 of 2)

: to do physical activities in order to make yourself stronger and healthier
: to use (a body part) again and again in order to make it stronger
: to cause (an animal) to walk, run, etc., : to give exercise to (an animal)

exercise

noun
ex·​er·​cise | \ ˈek-sər-ˌsīz How to pronounce exercise (audio) \

Kids Definition of exercise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the act of putting into use, action, or practice the exercise of patience
2 : bodily activity for the sake of improving physical fitness
3 : a school lesson or other task performed to develop skill : practice work : drill math exercises
4 exercises plural : a program of songs, speeches, and announcements of awards and honors graduation exercises

exercise

verb
exercised; exercising

Kids Definition of exercise (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to put into use : exert He's exercising his authority.
2 : to take part in bodily activity for the sake of improving physical fitness
3 : to use again and again to train or develop exercise a muscle

exercise

noun
ex·​er·​cise | \ ˈek-sər-ˌsīz How to pronounce exercise (audio) \

Medical Definition of exercise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : regular or repeated use of a faculty or bodily organ
2 : bodily exertion for the sake of developing and maintaining physical fitness

exercise

verb
exercised; exercising

Medical Definition of exercise (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to use repeatedly in order to strengthen or develop (as a muscle)
2 : to put through exercises

intransitive verb

: to take exercise

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exercise

noun
ex·​er·​cise | \ ˈek-sər-ˌsīz How to pronounce exercise (audio) \

Legal Definition of exercise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the discharge of an official function or professional occupation
2 : the act or an instance of carrying out the terms of an agreement (as an option)

exercise

transitive verb
exercised; exercising

Legal Definition of exercise (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to make effective in action exercising power
2 : to bring to bear exercise influence
3 : to implement the terms of (as an option)

Other Words from exercise

exercisable \ ˌek-​sər-​ˈsī-​zə-​bəl, ˈek-​sər-​ˌsī-​ How to pronounce exercisable (audio) \ adjective

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Comments on exercise

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