punching bag

punch·​ing bag | \ ˈpən-chiŋ- How to pronounce punching bag (audio) \

Definition of punching bag

1 : a stuffed or inflated bag usually suspended for free movement and punched for exercise or for training in boxing
2 : one who is routinely abused or defeated by another

Examples of punching bag in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Osman’s play in the first month has been an encouraging sign for the Cavaliers, especially given his miserable 2020-21 season that raised countless questions and led to him becoming a figurative punching bag. Chris Fedor, cleveland, 25 Nov. 2021 Paparazzi swarmed Spears’ home and her family, turning the singer into a tabloid punching bag. Rolling Stone, 23 Nov. 2021 The club is a popular punching bag for national MLS pundits but the reality, as well as the custom in North American sports, is that all expansion projects eventually improve. Pat Brennan, The Enquirer, 15 Nov. 2021 It was supposed to be different this time because the Rams had swapped quarterback Jared Goff, the 49ers’ personal punching bag, with Matthew Stafford, who led the NFL in passer rating (111). Eric Branch, San Francisco Chronicle, 15 Nov. 2021 The Cowboys’ favorite punching bag punched back Sunday, one week after playing only 16 defensive snaps against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Michael Gehlken, Dallas News, 19 Sep. 2021 We as men are supposed to protect our Queens not use them as a punching bag. oregonlive, 18 Nov. 2021 The Timbers used Real Salt Lake (13-14-6, 45 points) as a punching bag in two previous games this season, and Wednesday was no different. oregonlive, 4 Nov. 2021 Bloom became the fans’ punching bag, in some sense. BostonGlobe.com, 27 Oct. 2021

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

1886, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for punching bag

Time Traveler

The first known use of punching bag was in 1886

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Dictionary Entries Near punching bag


punching bag

punch line

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Statistics for punching bag

Last Updated

6 Dec 2021

Cite this Entry

“Punching bag.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/punching%20bag. Accessed 7 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for punching bag

punching bag


English Language Learners Definition of punching bag

: a very heavy bag that usually hangs from the ceiling and that is punched for exercise or training

More from Merriam-Webster on punching bag

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for punching bag


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