What does exercise mean?

Definitions for exercise
ˈɛk sərˌsaɪzex·er·cise

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word exercise.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. exercise, exercising, physical exercise, physical exertion, workout(noun)

    the activity of exerting your muscles in various ways to keep fit

    "the doctor recommended regular exercise"; "he did some exercising"; "the physical exertion required by his work kept him fit"

  2. use, usage, utilization, utilisation, employment, exercise(noun)

    the act of using

    "he warned against the use of narcotic drugs"; "skilled in the utilization of computers"

  3. exercise, practice, drill, practice session, recitation(noun)

    systematic training by multiple repetitions

    "practice makes perfect"

  4. exercise, example(noun)

    a task performed or problem solved in order to develop skill or understanding

    "you must work the examples at the end of each chapter in the textbook"

  5. exercise(verb)

    (usually plural) a ceremony that involves processions and speeches

    "academic exercises"

  6. exert, exercise(verb)

    put to use

    "exert one's power or influence"

  7. practice, practise, exercise, do(verb)

    carry out or practice; as of jobs and professions

    "practice law"

  8. exercise, work, work out(verb)

    give a workout to

    "Some parents exercise their infants"; "My personal trainer works me hard"; "work one's muscles"; "this puzzle will exercise your mind"

  9. exercise, work out(verb)

    do physical exercise

    "She works out in the gym every day"

  10. drill, exercise, practice, practise(verb)

    learn by repetition

    "We drilled French verbs every day"; "Pianists practice scales"


  1. Exercise(n.)

    Bodily exertion for the sake of keeping the organs and functions in a healthy state; hygienic activity; as, to take exercise on horseback; to exercise on a treadmill or in a gym.

  2. Origin: [F. exercice, L. exercitium, from exercere, exercitum, to drive on, keep, busy, prob. orig., to thrust or drive out of the inclosure; ex out + arcere to shut up, inclose. See Ark.]


  1. exercise(Noun)

    Any activity designed to develop or hone a skill or ability.

    The teacher told us the next exercise is to write an essay.

  2. exercise(Noun)

    Physical activity intended to improve strength and fitness.

  3. exercise(Verb)

    To set into action or practice.

    He was going to exercise the horses.

  4. exercise(Verb)

    To perform any activity designed to develop or hone a skill or ability.

  5. exercise(Verb)

    To take action, enforce.

  6. Origin: From exercitium

Webster Dictionary

  1. Exercise(noun)

    the act of exercising; a setting in action or practicing; employment in the proper mode of activity; exertion; application; use; habitual activity; occupation, in general; practice

  2. Exercise(noun)

    exertion for the sake of training or improvement whether physical, intellectual, or moral; practice to acquire skill, knowledge, virtue, perfectness, grace, etc

  3. Exercise(noun)

    bodily exertion for the sake of keeping the organs and functions in a healthy state; hygienic activity; as, to take exercise on horseback

  4. Exercise(noun)

    the performance of an office, a ceremony, or a religious duty

  5. Exercise(noun)

    that which is done for the sake of exercising, practicing, training, or promoting skill, health, mental, improvement, moral discipline, etc.; that which is assigned or prescribed for such ends; hence, a disquisition; a lesson; a task; as, military or naval exercises; musical exercises; an exercise in composition

  6. Exercise(noun)

    that which gives practice; a trial; a test

  7. Exercise(verb)

    to set in action; to cause to act, move, or make exertion; to give employment to; to put in action habitually or constantly; to school or train; to exert repeatedly; to busy

  8. Exercise(verb)

    to exert for the sake of training or improvement; to practice in order to develop; hence, also, to improve by practice; to discipline, and to use or to for the purpose of training; as, to exercise arms; to exercise one's self in music; to exercise troops

  9. Exercise(verb)

    to occupy the attention and effort of; to task; to tax, especially in a painful or vexatious manner; harass; to vex; to worry or make anxious; to affect; to discipline; as, exercised with pain

  10. Exercise(verb)

    to put in practice; to carry out in action; to perform the duties of; to use; to employ; to practice; as, to exercise authority; to exercise an office

  11. Exercise(verb)

    to exercise one's self, as under military training; to drill; to take exercise; to use action or exertion; to practice gymnastics; as, to exercise for health or amusement

  12. Origin: [F. exercice, L. exercitium, from exercere, exercitum, to drive on, keep, busy, prob. orig., to thrust or drive out of the inclosure; ex out + arcere to shut up, inclose. See Ark.]


  1. 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.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Exercise

    eks′ėr-sīz, n. a putting in practice: exertion of the body for health or amusement: discipline: a lesson, task, academical disputation, &c.: (Shak.) skill: (pl.) military drill: an act of worship or devotion: a discourse, the discussion of a passage of Scripture, giving the coherence of text and context, &c.—the addition, giving the doctrinal propositions, &c.: the Presbytery itself.—v.t. to train by use: to improve by practice: to afflict: to put in practice: to use: to wield.—adj. Ex′ercisable. [O. Fr. exercice—L. exercitium—L. exercēre, -citumex, out, arcēre, to shut up.]

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Exercise

    Physical activity which is usually regular and done with the intention of improving or maintaining PHYSICAL FITNESS or HEALTH. Contrast with PHYSICAL EXERTION which is concerned largely with the physiologic and metabolic response to energy expenditure.

Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms

  1. exercise

    A military maneuver or simulated wartime operation involving planning, preparation, and execution. It is carried out for the purpose of training and evaluation. It may be a multinational, joint, or single-Service exercise, depending on participating organizations. See also command post exercise; field exercise; maneuver.

The Foolish Dictionary, by Gideon Wurdz


    Bodily exertion requiring a $10,000 gymnasium, a ten-acre lot and impossible raiment. Originally confined to the wash-tub and the wood-pile.

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. exercise

    The practice of all those motions, actions, and management of arms, whereby men are duly trained for service. Also, the practice of loosing, reefing, and furling sails.--Exercise, in naval tactics, may be applied to the forming a fleet into order of sailing, line of battle, &c. The French term is évolutions or tactiques, and may be defined as the execution of the movements which the different orders and disposition of fleets occasionally require, and which the several ships are directed to perform by means of signals. (See SIGNALS.)

Military Dictionary and Gazetteer

  1. exercise

    The practice of all those motions and actions, together with the whole management of arms, which are essential to the perfection of a soldier, and the rendering him fit for service.

Editors Contribution

  1. exercise

    Physical activity carried out to sustain health and fitness.

    The family loved to exercise by walking in the mountains and cycling together in the local park.

    Submitted by MaryC on May 3, 2015  

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'exercise' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #1689

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'exercise' in Written Corpus Frequency: #1549

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'exercise' in Nouns Frequency: #600

  4. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'exercise' in Verbs Frequency: #407

How to pronounce exercise?

  1. Alex
    US English

How to say exercise in sign language?

  1. exercise


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of exercise in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of exercise in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of exercise in a Sentence

  1. Leslie Miklosy:

    Exercise effortlessness.

  2. Limpsync:

    Singing is exercise for the soul.

  3. Joe Macchiarola:

    I will exercise my right to NOT vote.

  4. Cesar Millan:

    Exercise, Discipline, then Affection.

  5. Aristophanes:

    Let each man exercise the art he knows.

Images & Illustrations of exercise

  1. exerciseexerciseexerciseexerciseexercise

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for exercise

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • تَمْرِين, تَدْرِيبArabic
  • практыкаваннеBelarusian
  • упражнявам, упражнявам се, тренировка, тренирам, упражнениеBulgarian
  • cvičit, cvičeníCzech
  • dyrke motionDanish
  • trainieren, Sport, Training, Übung, übenGerman
  • άσκηση, γυμναστικήGreek
  • ekzerciEsperanto
  • ejercer, ejercicio, ejercitarSpanish
  • õppusEstonian
  • تمرین, ورزش, مشقPersian
  • harjoitella, käyttää, kuntoilu, treenata, liikunta, harjoitus, treeni, harjoitteluFinnish
  • exercice, exercerFrench
  • eacarsaichScottish Gaelic
  • תַּרְגִּילHebrew
  • व्यायाम, अभ्यास, वर्ज़िश, कसरतHindi
  • egzèseHaitian Creole
  • edz, gyakorlat, edzés, gyakorol, gyakorlásHungarian
  • վարժությունArmenian
  • olahragaIndonesian
  • esercitareItalian
  • 体操, 体育, 練習, 運動Japanese
  • ვარჯიში, სავარჯიშოGeorgian
  • 연습, 運動, 운동, 련습Korean
  • exercitium, exercitātiōLatin
  • uždavinysLithuanian
  • vingrot, vingrinājums, vingrināt, izmantot, realizēt, vingrojumsLatvian
  • вежбаMacedonian
  • senaman, latihan, latih tubiMalay
  • oefenenDutch
  • treningNorwegian
  • ćwiczenie, ćwiczyćPolish
  • proceder, exercício, [[exercitar]]-[[se]], incitar, agirPortuguese
  • exercițiuRomanian
  • упражнение, зарядка, практиковаться, реализовывать, использовать, практика, упражняться, тренировка, тренироваться, физзарядкаRussian
  • вежба, vježba, вјежба, пракса, praksa, vežbaSerbo-Croatian
  • cvičenieSlovak
  • vaja, vadbaSlovene
  • träna, träning, praktisera, uppgift, utnyttja, övning, övaSwedish
  • mazoeziSwahili
  • egzersizTurkish
  • вправаUkrainian
  • ورزش, مشقUrdu
  • bài tậpVietnamese
  • koapaskilükamVolapük

Get even more translations for exercise »


Find a translation for the exercise definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • Chinese - Simplified 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • Chinese - Traditional 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Spanish Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • Japanese 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Portuguese Português (Portuguese)
  • German Deutsch (German)
  • Arabic العربية (Arabic)
  • French Français (French)
  • Russian Русский (Russian)
  • Kannada ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • Korean 한국어 (Korean)
  • Hebrew עברית (Hebrew)
  • Ukrainian Український (Ukrainian)
  • Urdu اردو (Urdu)
  • Hungarian Magyar (Hungarian)
  • Hindi मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesian Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italian Italiano (Italian)
  • Tamil தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Turkish Türkçe (Turkish)
  • Telugu తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • Thai ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Vietnamese Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Czech Čeština (Czech)
  • Polish Polski (Polish)
  • Indonesian Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Romanian Românește (Romanian)
  • Dutch Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Greek Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latin Latinum (Latin)
  • Swedish Svenska (Swedish)
  • Danish Dansk (Danish)
  • Finnish Suomi (Finnish)
  • Persian فارسی (Persian)
  • Yiddish ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • Armenian հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norwegian Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English English (English)

Discuss these exercise definitions with the community:

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:


Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


"exercise." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2019. Web. 14 Dec. 2019. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/exercise>.

Are we missing a good definition for exercise? Don't keep it to yourself...

Free, no signup required:

Add to Chrome

Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

Free, no signup required:

Add to Firefox

Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

Nearby & related entries:

Alternative searches for exercise:

Thanks for your vote! We truly appreciate your support.