1

flex

play
verb \ ˈfleks \
Updated on: 11 Sep 2017

Definition of flex

transitive verb
1 :to bend especially repeatedly
2 a :to move muscles so as to cause flexion of (a joint)
b :to move or tense (a muscle) by contraction
3 :use, demonstrate
  • flexing her skills as a singer
intransitive verb
:bend
flex one's muscles
:to demonstrate one's strength
  • an exaggerated need to flex his political muscles
  • —J. P. Lash

Examples of flex in a Sentence

  1. He flexed the muscles of his right arm.

  2. a material that flexes easily

Origin and Etymology of flex

borrowed from Latin flexus, past participle of flectere "to cause to go in a different direction, bend, curve," of uncertain origin


2

flex

noun

Definition of flex

chiefly British
:an electric cord

Origin and Etymology of flex

short for flexible cord


3

flex

noun

Definition of flex

:an act or instance of flexing

Origin and Etymology of flex

derivative of 1flex


FLEX Defined for English Language Learners

flex

play
verb

Definition of flex for English Language Learners

  • : to bend (a body part)

  • : to move or tighten (a muscle)


FLEX Defined for Kids

flex

play
verb \ ˈfleks \

Definition of flex for Students

flexed; flexing
1 :to bend especially again and again
  • Can you flex your fingers?
2 :to move or tense (a muscle)

Word Root of flex

The Latin word flectere, meaning “to bend” or “to curve,” and its form flexus give us the roots flect and flex. Words from the Latin flectere have something to do with bending or curving. To flex is to cause something, such as a muscle, to curve or bend. Something flexible can be bent without breaking. To deflect, or turn aside, is to bend the direction of something. To reflect is to bend an image back to the person looking at a mirror or other shiny surface.


Medical Dictionary

flex

play
transitive verb \ ˈfleks \

medical Definition of flex

1 :to bend especially repeatedly
2 a :to move muscles so as to cause flexion of (a joint)
  • stretching and flexing his knees
b :to move or tense (a muscle or muscles) by contraction
  • flexed their biceps


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up flex? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

of yeast or being unsettled or frivolous

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Merriam-Webster's New Words Quiz—Fall 2017 Edition!

  • young-plant-shoots
  • Which of the following is a new sense of the word bunny?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!