9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[ath-let-ik] /æθˈlɛt ɪk/
physically active and strong; good at athletics or sports:
an athletic child.
of, like, or befitting an athlete.
of or relating to athletes; involving the use of physical skills or capabilities, as strength, agility, or stamina:
athletic sports; athletic training.
for athletics:
an athletic field.
Psychology. (of a physical type) having a sturdy build or well-proportioned body structure.
Compare asthenic (def 2), pyknic (def 1).
Origin of athletic
1595-1605; < Latin āthlēticus < Greek āthlētikós. See athlete, -ic
Related forms
athletically, adverb
[ath-let-uh-siz-uh m] /æθˈlɛt əˌsɪz əm/ (Show IPA),
nonathletic, adjective
nonathletically, adverb
quasi-athletic, adjective
quasi-athletically, adverb
unathletic, adjective
unathletically, adverb
Pronunciation note
See athlete. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for athleticism
  • However, the fact remains that the outlet they choose to exercise their athleticism is not a sport but entertainment.
  • Spinners need a contortionist's fingers, not the athleticism of a fast bowler, which is why it has thrown up some unlikely heroes.
  • Anyone can watch and see the athleticism of the individual players.
  • athleticism is impressive but essentially prosaic, a matter of muscle.
  • The athleticism of these players is almost inconceivable.
  • We are used to the idea that normal humans can perform challenging feats of athleticism.
  • Their size is important, and their length and athleticism are a great advantage.
  • The problem is that audiences are wowed by athleticism and don't seem to value the beauty of grace in performance.
  • Plays with instinct but is generally lacking in athleticism.
  • The on-court action is full of athleticism and grace.
British Dictionary definitions for athleticism


physically fit or strong; muscular or active
of, relating to, or suitable for an athlete or for athletics
of or relating to a person with a muscular and well-proportioned body See also somatotype
Derived Forms
athletically, adverb
athleticism, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for athleticism

1835, from athletic + -ism.



1630s (athletical is from 1590s), "pertaining to an athlete," from Latin athleticus, from Greek athletikos, from athletes (see athlete). Meaning "strong of body; vigorous; lusty; robust" [Johnson, who spells it athletick] is from 1650s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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