practice

verb
prac·​tice | \ ˈprak-təs How to pronounce practice (audio) \
variants: or less commonly practise
practiced also practised; practicing also practising

Definition of practice

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : carry out, apply practice what you preach
b : to do or perform often, customarily, or habitually practice politeness
c : to be professionally engaged in practice medicine
2a : to perform or work at repeatedly so as to become proficient practice the act
b : to train by repeated exercises practice pupils in penmanship
3 obsolete : plot

intransitive verb

1 : to do repeated exercises for proficiency
2 : to pursue a profession actively
3 archaic : intrigue
4 : to do something customarily
5 : to take advantage of someone he practised on their credulity with huge successThe Times Literary Supplement (London)

practice

noun
variants: or less commonly practise

Definition of practice (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : actual performance or application ready to carry out in practice what they advocated in principle
b : a repeated or customary action had this irritating practice
c : the usual way of doing something local practices
d : the form, manner, and order of conducting legal suits and prosecutions
2a : systematic exercise for proficiency practice makes perfect
b : the condition of being proficient through systematic exercise get in practice
3a : the continuous exercise of a profession
b : a professional business especially : one constituting an incorporeal property

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from practice

Verb

practicer noun

Synonyms for practice

Synonyms: Verb

exercise, rehearse, run over

Synonyms: Noun

dry run, rehearsal, trial

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Choose the Right Synonym for practice

Noun

habit, practice, usage, custom, wont mean a way of acting fixed through repetition. habit implies a doing unconsciously and often compulsively. had a habit of tapping his fingers practice suggests an act or method followed with regularity and usually through choice. our practice is to honor all major credit cards usage suggests a customary action so generally followed that it has become a social norm. western-style dress is now common usage in international business custom applies to a practice or usage so steadily associated with an individual or group as to have almost the force of unwritten law. the custom of wearing black at funerals wont usually applies to a habitual manner, method, or practice of an individual or group. as was her wont, she slept until noon

Examples of practice in a Sentence

Verb

To be a good musician, you have to practice a lot. Have you been practicing your lines for the play? She had to practice flying in various weather conditions before she could get her pilot's license. Grandmother taught us to practice good manners. Practice what you preach—don't smoke if you tell your children not to smoke.

Noun

Being a good musician takes a lot of practice. I'm sure you'll learn your lines for the play with enough practice. They'll get better with practice. I'm late for trumpet practice. The marching band has practice every Wednesday afternoon. The team's practices usually last two hours. She has made a practice of volunteering at a homeless shelter one weekend a month. The country's poor sanitation practices have led to widespread disease. Burial practices vary around the world. It is common practice among my friends to not use capital letters in e-mail.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, a way to practice her teachings in the real world. Sara Rodrigues, House Beautiful, "Watch Out Goop, Marie Kondo Is Launching Her Own Lifestyle Site," 8 Mar. 2019 That’s enough to put off the needle for now—and spend more time practicing my #nomakeup #nofilter selfies. Anne Roderique-jones, SELF, "What It’s Actually Like to Get Fraxel Laser Treatment," 21 Nov. 2018 Meditation is one of the best tools humans have for training our minds Mindfulness meditation has been practiced in East and Southeast Asia since the Buddha began teaching it 2,600 years ago. Eliza Barclay, Vox, "The growth of yoga and meditation in the US since 2012 is remarkable," 11 Nov. 2018 Better yet for the Huskies: Sophomore tight end Hunter Bryant, a 2017 ESPN Freshman All-American who has been out since summer knee surgery, also has been practicing with the team and is nearing a return. Adam Jude, The Seattle Times, "Trey Adams, Hunter Bryant, Myles Gaskin expected to return for UW Huskies’ November push," 26 Oct. 2018 The Big 12 conference champion, Barquin had dreams of making the pro tour and spent hours practicing at Coldwater Golf Links in Ames. Lucia I. Suarez Sang, Fox News, "Celia Barquin Arozamena's hometown in Spain mourns her death: 'She was in the best moment of her life'," 19 Sep. 2018 The 21-year-old model has been practicing her neutral look ahead of an actual wedding dress since the duo announced their engagement, most recently pulling out a white mini dress and sneakers last month in her go-to sporty vibe. Avery Matera, Teen Vogue, "Hailey Baldwin Wore a White Dress to the Marriage Court House With Justin Bieber," 14 Sep. 2018 So far, Simon’s mostly been practicing with the second-team defense, behind Basham, a second-year player who didn’t exactly wow as a rookie. Zak Keefer, Indianapolis Star, "Colts observations: More throws from Andrew Luck, does John Simon have a home?," 13 June 2018 Keep your pet sharp by practicing the command a few times a week, but don’t overuse it. Woman's Day Staff, Woman's Day, "This Abandoned Shelter Dog Rescued the Missing Son of Her Former Trainer," 20 Nov. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Sensitivities on all sets are particularly high, but the movement has brought to the surface the problematic nature of once-accepted on-set practices while filming hookups. Whitney Friedlander, Marie Claire, "TV Sex Scenes Are Unrealistic. Rachel Bloom Wants to Change That," 1 Mar. 2019 In addition, the law also eliminated personal exemptions, increased child credits, limited popular deductions and generally upended many familiar practices that determine what happens at tax time. Sarah Skidmore Sell, The Seattle Times, "I owe how much? Americans shocked by impact of new tax law," 20 Feb. 2019 The annual award is given to rising fashion designers who exhibit talent, originality, a strong sense of community, and sustainable practices, according to Buckingham Palace. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Duchess Camilla Sits Front-Row at London Fashion Week on the Queen's Behalf," 19 Feb. 2019 Doubts about Kraft’s practice of slashing marketing and innovation budgets to the bone aren’t new. Carol Ryan, WSJ, "What Kraft Heinz’s Mess Means for Rivals and Investors," 22 Feb. 2019 A 4000 miles/four months interval is good practice. Paul Weissler, Popular Mechanics, "How to Pick the Right Motor Oil for Your Car," 14 Feb. 2019 The case had already resulted in reams of embarrassing details about Uber’s business practices being made public. Andrew J. Hawkins, The Verge, "The Verge 2018 tech report card: Uber," 29 Dec. 2018 Google’s data privacy practices will likely come up, especially given the company’s acknowledgement on Monday that a data breach impacting its social platform, Google+, affected 52 million users. Shirin Ghaffary, Recode, "Live updates from Google CEO Sundar Pichai’s testimony to Congress today," 11 Dec. 2018 Their original sentences were eight years and 12 years, respectively, which were halved because of their confessions, which is normal practice in Thai courts. Fox News, "Thai court finds 9 Muslim men guilty in Bangkok bomb plot," 25 Sep. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of practice

Verb

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for practice

Verb

Middle English practisen, from Middle French practiser, from Medieval Latin practizare, alteration of practicare, from practica practice, noun, from Late Latin practice, from Greek praktikē, from feminine of praktikos

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about practice

Statistics for practice

Last Updated

13 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for practice

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for practice

practice

verb

English Language Learners Definition of practice

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to do something again and again in order to become better at it
: to do (something) regularly or constantly as an ordinary part of your life
: to live according to the customs and teachings of (a religion)

practice

noun

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

: the activity of doing something again and again in order to become better at it
: a regular occasion at which you practice something
: something that is done often or regularly

practice

verb
prac·​tice | \ ˈprak-təs How to pronounce practice (audio) \
practiced; practicing

Kids Definition of practice

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to do or work at often so as to learn well or improve Practice the piano daily.
2 : to do or perform often or usually Try to practice good manners.
3 : to engage in or work at as a profession practice medicine

practice

noun

Kids Definition of practice (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of doing something again and again in order to learn or improve Ballet takes a lot of practice.
2 : a regular event at which something is done again and again to increase skill soccer practice
3 : actual performance : use I put his advice into practice.
4 : a usual way of doing something It's our practice to rise early.
5 : continuous work in a profession the practice of law

practice

verb
prac·​tice
variants: or practise \ ˈprak-​təs How to pronounce practise (audio) \
practiced or practised; practicing or practising

Medical Definition of practice

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to be professionally engaged in practice medicine

intransitive verb

: to pursue a profession actively

practice

noun
variants: also practise

Medical Definition of practice (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the continuous exercise of a profession
2 : a professional business especially : one constituting an incorporeal property the doctor sold his practice and retired

Keep scrolling for more

practice

noun
prac·​tice

Legal Definition of practice

1 : the form and manner of conducting judicial and quasi-judicial proceedings
2a : the continuous exercise of a profession also : the performance of services that are considered to require an appropriate license engaged in the unauthorized practice of law
b : a professional business

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on practice

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to corrupt or become corrupted

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A Green Quiz

  • shamrock
  • What is the best definition of green-eyed monster?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

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!