an effort to reach or pass a norm, especially after a period of delay:
After the slowdown there was a catch-up in production.
an effort to catch up with or surpass a competitor, as in a sports contest.
an instance of catching up.
intended to keep up with or surpass a norm or competitor:
a catch-up pay raise to offset inflation.
to make a special effort to overcome a late start, a liability, or the advantage a competitor has:
After Russia launched the first space satellite, other countries had to play catch-up.
Americanism; noun, adj. use of verb phrase