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Exercise appears in the following pangram (a sentence using every letter of the alphabet at least once):

  • On the boardwalk grave playful lizards quickly jump and exercise. (55 letters)
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The following statistics are based on the British National Corpus, so they are representative for the British English.

Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the noun exercise:


Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the verb exercise:

Video footage: Medium panning shot of people dancing in exercise class / Orem, Utah, United States
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Definition of the noun exercise

What does exercise mean as a name of something?

Exercise is one of the top 1000 most common nouns in the English language.

noun - plural: exercises

  1. the activity of exerting your muscles in various ways to keep fit
  2. the act of using
  3. systematic training by multiple repetitions
  4. a task performed or problem solved in order to develop skill or understanding
    • lexical domain: Acts - nouns denoting acts or actions
    • synonym of exercise: example
    • more generic word: lesson = a task assigned for individual study
  5. (usually plural) a ceremony that involves processions and speeches
  6. an action, often used negatively and without consequences
    • examples: an exercise in futility | an exercise in cheap talk
    • lexical domain: Acts - nouns denoting acts or actions
    • more generic word: action = something done

Alternative definition of the noun exercise


  1. Any activity designed to develop or hone a skill or ability.
  2. Physical activity intended to improve strength and fitness.

Specialised definition of the noun exercise

Glossary of sports

physical or mental activity, especially the active use of the muscles as a way of keeping fit, correcting a deformity or strengthening a part (2006. Dictionary of Sport and Exercise Science. A&C Black Publishers Ltd)

a particular movement or action designed to use and strengthen the muscles (2006. Dictionary of Sport and Exercise Science. A&C Black Publishers Ltd)

the process as well as the result of sportive action. As a process, exercise is the repeated execution of predetermined movement sequences (exercising) with different levels of intensity; as a result, exercise is a part of a comprehensive motor performance or presentation (e.g. in figure-skating, gymnastics). (Herbert Haag & Gerald Haag. 2003. Dictionary. Sport, Physical Education, Sport Science. Kiel, Institut für Sport und Sportwissenschaften)

Definition of the verb exercise

What does exercise mean as a doing word?

Exercise is one of the top 1000 most common verbs in the English language.

verb - inflections: exercised | exercising | exercises

  1. put to use
  2. carry out or practice; as of jobs and professions
  3. give a workout to
    • examples: Some parents exercise their infants | this puzzle will exercise your mind | They exercise the animals
    • syntax:
      Syntactic formulaExample for the syntactic formula
      [Agent - being] [Verb]Marlene dressed
      [Agent - being] [Verb] [Patient]Celia brushed her hair | Celia brushed the baby's hair | Marlene dressed the baby | Sheila groomed the horse | The hygienist flossed my teeth
      [Agent - being] [Verb] [Patient, reflexive]Marlene dressed herself

      Verbs of Grooming and Bodily Care (with the same syntax): bathe, change, clothe, disrobe, dress, moisturize, preen, primp, shave, shower, strip, sunbathe, tan, undress, wash.

    • lexical domain: Body Actions - verbs of grooming, dressing and bodily care
    • synonyms of exercise: work / work out
    • more generic terms: put to work / work = cause to work
    • more specific term: warm up = cause to do preliminary exercises so as to stretch the muscles
    • cause: work out
  4. do physical exercise
    • examples: They exercise | They exercise themselves
    • syntax: the same syntax as for the sense 3
    • lexical domain: Body Actions - verbs of grooming, dressing and bodily care
    • synonym of exercise: work out
    • more specific terms:
    • entailment: move = move so as to change position, perform a nontranslational motion
  5. learn by repetition

Alternative definition of the verb exercise


  1. To set into action or practice.
  2. To perform any activity designed to develop or hone a skill or ability.
  3. To take action, enforce.

Specialised definition of the verb exercise

Glossary of sports

to undertake physical exercise in order to keep fit and healthy (2006. Dictionary of Sport and Exercise Science. A&C Black Publishers Ltd)

to subject the body, or part of it, to repetitive physical exertion or energetic movement in order to strengthen it or improve its condition (2006. Dictionary of Sport and Exercise Science. A&C Black Publishers Ltd)


"Exercise" is a film, directed by Lucia Nimcova.


"Exercise" is a book by Carol Ballard.

  • subject: Fitness


"Exercise" is an artwork by Richard Larter.


Exercise is a musical group.

  • albums: "Minnesota Attacks, Volume 2"


  1. Exercise a.k.a. Physical exercise is any bodily activity that enhances or maintains physical fitness and overall health and wellness. It is performed for various reasons, including strengthening muscles and the cardiovascular system, honing athletic skills, weight loss or maintenance, and merely enjoyment. Frequent and regular physical exercise boosts the immune system and helps prevent the "diseases of affluence" such as heart disease, cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes, and obesity. It may also help prevent depression, help to promote or maintain positive self-esteem, improve mental health generally, and can augment an individual's sex appeal or body image, which has been found to be linked with higher levels of self-esteem. Childhood obesity is a growing global concern, and physical exercise may help decrease some of the effects of childhood and adult obesity. Health care providers often call exercise the "miracle" or "wonder" drug—alluding to the wide variety of proven benefits that it can provide.
  2. Exercise: The owner of an option contract has the right to exercise it, and thus require that the financial transaction specified by the contract is to be carried out immediately between the two parties, whereupon the option contract is terminated. When exercising a call option, the owner of the option purchases the underlying shares at the strike price from the option seller, while for a put option, the owner of the option sells the underlying to the option seller, again at the strike price.
  3. Exercise: A mathematical exercise is a routine application of algebra or other mathematics to a stated challenge. Teachers assign mathematical exercises to develop the skills of their students. Early exercises deal with addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of integers. Extensive courses of exercises in school extend such arithmetic to rational numbers. Various approaches to geometry have based exercises on relations of angles, segments, and triangles. The topic of trigonometry gains many of its exercises from the trigonometric identities. In college mathematics exercises often depend on functions of a real variable. The standard exercises of calculus involve finding derivatives and integrals of specified functions.

Phrases with Exercise

Phrases starting with the word Exercise:

  1. exercise set
  2. Exercise ball
  3. exercise bike
  4. Exercise book
  5. exercise device
  6. Exercise bicycle
  7. Exercise machine

Phrases ending with the word Exercise:

  1. arm exercise
  2. leg exercise
  3. back exercise
  4. neck exercise
  5. Floor Exercise
  6. Floor-Exercise
  7. aerobic exercise
  8. stomach exercise
  9. isotonic exercise
  10. Military exercise
  11. physical exercise
  12. anaerobic exercise
  13. gymnastic exercise

View more phrases with the word Exercise in thesaurus!

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Exercise

Click on a title to look inside that book (if available):

Google previewThe Disabled Woman's Guide to Pregnancy and Birth (2005)

by Judith Rogers, OTR

A stretching exercise is a movement that lengthens muscle fibers; a range-of- motion exercise is a movement that enhances the range of motion of a joint. For example, some range-of-motion exercises enable the elbow to bend and straighten ...

Google previewInner Development (1992)

Seven Lectures ; Rotterdam, 15 - 22 August 1938 by Valentin Tomberg

The second exercise is the so-called control of actions. In this case it is a matter of carrying...

The fourth exercise is that of positivity, of developing in oneself the ability to perceive the positive element in all things. It is a matter of finding — by ...

Google previewThe Lancet-clinic (1910)

Yet proper exercise is the keystone in the arch of health essentials, for by its performance all other functions are sustained, more...

Google previewBTEC First Sport Level 2 Assessment Guide: Unit 4 The Sports Performer in Action (2013)

by Katherine Howard

A longterm adaptation to exercise is that the heart becomes stronger and more efficient. Exercise increases blood pressure, but this is a good thing as it helps the heart and blood vessels to cope with the extra exertion and this then makes the ...

Google previewCardiac Valvular Medicine (2012)

by Nalini Rajamannan

Treadmill exercise is the most commonly used test in UK and in US, while upright bicycle test is the preferred approach in the rest of Europe. It is performed according the ACC/AHA practice guidelines using a Bruce modified protocol ( Gibbons ...

Google previewAdvanced Nutrition (2015)

Macronutrients, Micronutrients, and Metabolism, Second Edition by Carolyn D. Berdanier, Lynnette A. Berdanier

By definition, exercise is a physical activity that is apart from that associated with daily living. It is designed to improve fitness and health. In the extreme, it is designed to prepare one to compete in athletic events. The elite athlete is in a class by ...

Google previewHealth and Safety Worktext (2011)

by Joanne Suter

Regular exercise is a key to physical fitness. It helps you stay healthy and look and feel your best. Aerobic exercises strengthen your heart. During aerobic exercise, you breathe in more oxygen (air) and your body uses it in an effective way.

Google previewLaw and Religion (2000)

A Critical Anthology by Stephen M. Feldman

Free exercise is the end; no-establishment is a necessary means to that end. No- establishment simply...

It follows that any interpretation of no-establishment that hinders free exercise is a misinterpretation of no-establishment. In recent history ...

Google previewSay Good Night to Insomnia (2009)

The Six-Week, Drug-Free Program Developed At Harvard Medical School by Gregg D. Jacobs

Perhaps the major reason people don't exercise is the mispercep- tion that exercise means sweat-soaked, exhausting, torturous physical exertion. This concept is partially the result of an overemphasis on the importance of engaging in twenty ...

Google previewThe Secrets of Serotonin (1996)

The Natural Plan For Mood Enhancement, Appetite Control, & Higher Energy by Carol Hart

Exercise is a well-known antidepressant.

too overwhelmed to get out of bed, much less jog around the park, both studies and case reports indicate that regular, better yet, daily exercise is an excellent treatment for depression and anxiety.

Google previewEffective Talent Management (2016)

Aligning Strategy, People and Performance by Mark Wilcox, Professor of Medical Microbiology Mark Wilcox

Similarly to interviewing, the weakness in the reliability of the results of any assessment exercise is the variability in the assessor's ratings. If the assessor is trained and has experience, the reliability improves. However, where there is a mix of ...

Google previewDictionary of Theories, Laws, and Concepts in Psychology (1998)

by Jon E. Roeckelein

EXERCISE, LAW OF Thibaut, J.. & Kelley, H. (1978). Interpersonal relations: A theory of interdependence. New York: Wiley. Gergen, K., Greenberg, M., & Willis, R. (Eds.) (1980). Social exchange: Advances in theory and research.

Google previewRoutledge Encyclopedia of Language Teaching and Learning (2013)

by Michael Byram, Adelheid Hu

Ideally, foreign language practice activities should help learners progress from strongly teacher-supported controlled exercise types to automatic and eventually autonomous reception and production of the foreign language they are learning.

Google previewThe Encyclopaedia of Sports Medicine: An IOC Medical Commission Publication, Genetic and Molecular Aspects of Sports Performance (2011)

by Claude Bouchard, Eric P. Hoffman

EXERCISE,. AND. CARDIOVASCULAR. PHENOTYPES . JAMES. M. HAGBERG. Department of Kinesiology, School of Public Health, University of Maryland, College ...

Google previewUsing a Dictionary, Grades 4 - 8 (2000)

by Deborah White Broadwater

Exercise. 2. Directions: Write each list in alphabetical order on the line below each set of words. 1. middle marker mean money mast mince mouse milk mildew 5. bitter bluff bicycle back bake bend blink buffalo botch 6. throw think tank trim ...

Google previewHistorical Dictionary of U.S. Diplomacy during the Cold War (2014)

by Martin Folly

exercise code-named Able Archer 83 has been seen by some analysts as one of the points when the Cold War came closest to escalating into a nuclear ...

Google previewA Dictionary of the English Language ... Mainly Abridged from the Latest Edition of the Quarto Dictionary of Noah Webster (1872)

by Noah Webster

EXERCISE.-—AWt1k€, asleep, ahead, aside, afar. aweary; apatlietic, amorphous , atheist, abyss, aorist, anonymous, anomaly, anecdote, anarchy; abate, avert. KB , a prefix to words of Latin origin, and a Latin preposition, is the same as the ...

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias with entries for Exercise

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Photos about Exercise

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View more pictures about Exercise Bike.

If you need related images for an article or a report, you can download stock photos:
Small photo of one caucasian woman exercising cardio boxing cross core workout fitness exercise aerobics silhouette isolated on white backgroundSmall photo of Strong woman using resistance band in her exercise routineSmall photo of Side plank fitness woman training body core planking exercise. Workout at outdoor gym or home garden Asian girl exercising obliques abs muscles with yoga pose plank.Small photo of Healthy lifestyle exercise.Small photo of Young woman exercise at home healthy lifestyleSmall photo of Diet and exerciseSmall photo of Attractive female doing plank exercise in gym More...

Video language resources about Exercise

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View more videos about Leg Exercise, Exercise ball, and Five-finger exercise.

See also the pronunciation examples of Exercise!

Sign language

Exercise in Baby Sign Language, ASL

Quotes about Exercise

I get my exercise acting as a pallbearer to my friends who exercise. (Chauncey Depew)
more quotes about exercise...

Scrabble value of E1X8E1R1C3I1S1E1

The value of this 8-letter word is 17 points. It is included in the first and second editions of the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

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