in·​step | \ ˈin-ˌstep How to pronounce instep (audio) \

Definition of instep

1 : the arched middle portion of the human foot in front of the ankle joint especially : its upper surface
2 : the part of a shoe or stocking that fits over the instep

Illustration of instep

Illustration of instep

instep 1

Examples of instep in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Slide styles consist of a single, wide strap across the instep. Sian Babish,, "The best Birkenstock sandal for women," 8 Oct. 2020 The plaster shell of the space is as pearly as the instep of Fragonard’s swinging woman. Daisy Alioto, Longreads, "House of the Century," 10 Aug. 2020 One aims at the carelessly graceful break over the instep. Rivka Galchen, The New Yorker, "Wartime for Wodehouse," 25 May 2020 The socks clung to my feet, curving smoothly around my toes and up my instep before clinging securely to the back of my heel (yep, no more excess fabric attractively bunching up and spilling over the back of my shoe). Christa Sgobba, SELF, "I Finally Found Running Socks That Fit, and I Haven’t Had a Blister Since," 21 Feb. 2020 Full sock warmers offer options (depending on the model) that heat the instep (top of foot), toe, or entire bottom (insole) of your foot. The Editors, Field & Stream, "3 Things to Consider Before You Buy Insole Foot Warmers," 23 Oct. 2019 Siena Queirolo put the Rage ahead 1-0 with a beautiful instep punch-in at the end of the first half. Bay Area News Group, The Mercury News, "Youth soccer results," 18 Sep. 2019 The light and flexible Regatta hits the sweet spot, with a stretch mesh upper and all-terra traction soles, plus an adjustable instep strap for stability. Karen Campbell,, "Hybrid footwear for all terrains," 4 July 2019 To borrow from golf: The instep of the foot is the equivalent of the modern 460cc toaster-on-a-stick compared with the old persimmon driver represented by Moseley’s three-and-a-half-inch, straight-front Nike Boomer cleat. Michael Farber,, "Mark Moseley, Last of the Straight-On Kickers," 2 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'instep.' 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 instep

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for instep

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The first known use of instep was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

16 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Instep.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for instep


How to pronounce instep (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of instep

: the raised middle part of the top of your foot between the toes and the ankle
: the part of a shoe, sock, etc., that fits over the instep


in·​step | \ ˈin-ˌstep How to pronounce instep (audio) \

Kids Definition of instep

: the arched middle part of the human foot between the ankle and the toes


in·​step | \ ˈin-ˌstep How to pronounce instep (audio) \

Medical Definition of instep

: the arched middle portion of the human foot in front of the ankle joint especially : its upper surface

More from Merriam-Webster on instep

Nglish: Translation of instep for Spanish Speakers

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