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

Synonyms: Noun

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 As the coronavirus continues to spread, many of us are at home, wisely practicing social distancing. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "Stitchroom Is Helping Crafty People DIY Masks for Healthcare Workers," 23 Mar. 2020 Essential businesses will continue to operate, though practicing social-distancing. Laura Mazade, Cincinnati.com, "What the stay-at-home order means for Ohio," 22 Mar. 2020 The goal is to keep people with symptoms at home and to practice social distancing if their condition doesn’t warrant more intensive hospital care. Stephanie Armour, WSJ, "What You Need to Know About Telehealth During the Coronavirus Crisis," 22 Mar. 2020 Queen Elizabeth is setting an example and practicing self-quarantining. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "The Queen Sent a Subtle Message About Staying Strong During the Coronavirus Outbreak as She Left London," 21 Mar. 2020 Suffice to say, now is a good time to practice social distancing by living out your dreams, adopting six dogs, and hanging out in a million-simoleon mansion. Wired Staff, Wired, "The Best Weekend Deals on Games, Kindles, Home Theater, and More," 21 Mar. 2020 People have been urged to telework if possible and to practice social distancing. Helen Branswell, STAT, "Understanding what works: How some countries are beating back the coronavirus," 20 Mar. 2020 As social distancing becomes more widely practiced, people are limiting their outside interactions. Melanie Feuk, Houston Chronicle, "Northwest Houston business community seeks footing in ‘uncharted territory’," 20 Mar. 2020 People have been urged to telework if possible and to practice social distancing. Helen Branswell, BostonGlobe.com, "Understanding what works: How some countries are beating back the coronavirus," 20 Mar. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Sooner or later, practices and the games will come back when the coronavirus pandemic subsides. oregonlive, "Catching a football in the coronavirus era? Former Oregon State receiver Rahmel Dockery shows how (video)," 23 Mar. 2020 Then the players went outside to practice and prepare for that day’s game. John Shea, SFChronicle.com, "‘This is my family’: How Giants’ Alyssa Nakken made strong impressions in camp," 23 Mar. 2020 In practice, however, research at the University of Connecticut has continued more or less normally in several labs, according to a graduate student there who wished to remain anonymous for fear of reprisal. Michael Price, Science | AAAS, "Amid coronavirus shutdowns, some grad students feel pressure to report to their labs," 20 Mar. 2020 On account of the flu ban they were compelled to meet Vanderbilt after only a few days practice and were defeated thru no fault of their own. Jon Hale, The Courier-Journal, "Coronavirus cancellations are not the first time a pandemic has affected UK sports," 18 Mar. 2020 Clear and publicly available practices and processes reinforce our commitment to putting users’ needs first. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Study ranks the privacy of major browsers. Here are the findings," 17 Mar. 2020 Every team has challenges to work through in spring practice. Brett Vito, Denton Record-Chronicle, "North Texas' opportunity to conduct spring football practice might have just gone up in smoke," 15 Mar. 2020 But in practice, some people's stomachs are sensitive to it. Matt Jancer, Wired, "Please, Stop Stockpiling Dehydrated and Freeze-Dried Meals," 15 Mar. 2020 Magney added that the state is in the process of offering guidelines for local clerks on primary day for sanitary practices and supplies that may be needed. Caitlin Conant, CBS News, "2020 Daily Trail Markers: Coronavirus and the campaign trail," 13 Mar. 2020

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

Time Traveler for practice

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for practice

Last Updated

26 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Practice.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/practice. Accessed 31 Mar. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for practice

practice

verb
How to pronounce practice (audio)

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

See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

March 2020 Words of the Day Quiz

  • field of crocuses
  • Which is a synonym of rectitudinous?
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!