starting block


Definition of starting block

1 : a device that usually consists of two blocks mounted on either side of an adjustable frame and that provides a runner with a rigid surface against which to brace the feet at the start of a race
2 : one of a series of boxes or low platforms at one end of a pool on which a competitor stands for the start of a swimming race

Illustration of starting block

Illustration of starting block

starting block 1

First Known Use of starting block

1910, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About starting block

Time Traveler for starting block

Time Traveler

The first known use of starting block was in 1910

See more words from the same year

Statistics for starting block

Cite this Entry

“Starting block.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jun. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for starting block

starting block


English Language Learners Definition of starting block

: a device that has two blocks for runners to put their feet on and push against at the start of a race

More from Merriam-Webster on starting block Encyclopedia article about starting block


Test Your Vocabulary

Return of Name that Color!

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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