Main definitions of limber in English

: limber1limber2

limber1

adjective

  • 1(of a person or body part) lithe or supple.

    ‘I have to practise to keep myself limber’
    • ‘The woman was incredibly limber and evasive, weaving through everything like she was made out of rubber and not flesh.’
    • ‘She rested comfortably in the lotus position (no trick, given her extraordinarily limber body) and seemed to be quite preoccupied.’
    • ‘I've never been the real limber type, nor much of a stretcher.’
    • ‘Stretching and keeping your body flexible and limber is so important especially as we age so when we reach for something we don't pull our back out or pull a muscle.’
    • ‘We shuffled back and forth in the tracks for a few minutes, trying to stay limber, until the Norwegian ambassador to Canada sounded the ceremonial horn and we took off.’
    • ‘We also did a lot of stretching, and for the first time in years, I started to feel limber.’
    • ‘With limber agility, she propelled herself into the air, in a graceful back flip.’
    • ‘It will not only help you develop a more lithe and limber body, it will improve your strength training as well.’
    • ‘I know dancers are very limber and flexible, what happens if I can never do a split?’
    • ‘Luchey is quicker and more limber than Henderson, and he could be a more complete player if he gets his act together.’
    • ‘Stretch enough to get limber before squatting, but don't over-stretch as this actually weakens your muscles.’
    • ‘Since pregnant women may feel more limber, they often over-stretch and injure themselves.’
    • ‘Her body was limber, lithe with the grace of a cat or that of a ballet dancer, hinting at carefully controlled strength.’
    • ‘He's very limber and agile and would have a few good moves to pull out on Superman.’
    • ‘Throughout his lengthy international career, the much-tattooed and free-speaking Wilson has cultivated a reputation as a renegade in a sport whose image can be as stiff as its athletes are limber.’
    • ‘Fire up the old grill, do a few twelve-ounce elbow bends to stay limber and just kick back.’
    • ‘Putting them last ensures that I'm thoroughly warmed up and stretched out and will be limber enough to work my abs through a full range of motion with intensity and good form.’
    • ‘You don't need to be a stuntman, you just have to have a limber body and some muscle.’
    • ‘With flexibility training, however, we can keep our bodies more limber and youthful.’
    • ‘There is also a foot-well under each table, so those less limber than SE Asians can sit easily.’
    lithe, supple, nimble, lissom, flexible, fit, spry, sprightly, agile, acrobatic, quick-moving, deft, willowy, graceful, loose-jointed, loose-limbed
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    1. 1.1 (of a thing) flexible.
      ‘limber graphite fishing rods’
      • ‘You want to wind up with a sidearm sweep and lob the assemblage far across the open water, and this is best done with the long, limber stick.’
      lithe, supple, nimble, lissom, flexible, fit, spry, sprightly, agile, acrobatic, quick-moving, deft, willowy, graceful, loose-jointed, loose-limbed
      View synonyms

verb

[NO OBJECT]
  • Warm up in preparation for exercise or activity, especially sport or athletics.

    ‘the acrobats were limbering up for the big show’
    • ‘They may not be as quick as Darren Campbell or have the stamina of Paula Radcliffe but a few thousand workers of the emergency service are limbering up for a fiery contest of their own.’
    • ‘A group of nurses from Manchester were today limbering up for a trek up Mount Snowdon to raise money for a new breast cancer centre at their hospital.’
    • ‘Intrepid Hadleigh firefighters are limbering up ready to climb ‘Mount Everest’ in tropical temperatures on Friday.’
    • ‘The council squad has teamed up with staff at the Barbican, Courtney's Gym and Fitness First to limber up for Sunday's big event, and have been training since March.’
    • ‘When the selectors were bussed to the Kelvin Hall in a Strathclyde double decker, they were a mite bemused to find the arena dominated by circus elephants limbering up for their annual Christmas gig.’
    • ‘In the studio, six bodies are silently limbering up for their third run-through of the day; it's barely noon.’
    • ‘Health experts from Sheffield Council are promoting a new fitness regime to get the people who most need the exercise limbering up.’
    • ‘As Henman was going through his trial by Frenchman on the centre court, Stefan Edberg was limbering up for today's exhibition match against Boris Becker.’
    • ‘A fitness instructor is limbering up and inspiring Preston women to get in shape for this year's Race for Life.’
    • ‘Sara is limbering up to run the London Marathon on Sunday.’
    • ‘After skipping their way into the Guinness Book of Records, six Waterford-based athletes have expanded their group and are limbering up for another arduous challenge - a marathon relay from Malin to Mizen Head.’
    • ‘However, neither were too keen to queue up for a rub down by students from the Institute of Physical Therapy who were only too happy to help the women limber up for the 10 km race.’
    • ‘Inside, Yorkshire Phoenix are limbering up for their National League first division match against Essex Eagles.’
    • ‘Cyclists are limbering up for a 25-mile sponsored bike ride covering some of England's finest countryside the opening event of Swindon Cares week.’
    • ‘They are limbering up for the annual Celtic Christmas Ceilidh on December 19 at St Anne's Catholic Club, North Street, Keighley.’
    • ‘At most home-grown spas or gyms, I swear that more women are strutting about as if they're limbering up for a pole-dancing set or a spot of burlesque - all they need is a couple of feather fans.’
    • ‘Seeing two runners limbering up on the deck of a yacht while you race spinnaker is quite fun.’
    • ‘That's if the world's sporting elite find themselves with time to spare between limbering up for races in their hectic schedule.’
    • ‘The Greeks are finally ready, and the world's top athletes are limbering up for the big event.’
    • ‘Kaddy will be limbering up for her strenuous trip with practice cycles around Kent and Sussex, filing reports on her progress from around the region for BBC South East Today throughout next week.’
    warm up, loosen up, get into condition, get into shape, get ready, prepare, practise, train, drill
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Origin

Mid 16th century (as an adjective): perhaps from limber in the dialect sense ‘cart shaft’, with allusion to the to-and-fro motion.

Pronunciation

limber

/ˈlɪmbə/

Main definitions of limber in English

: limber1limber2

limber2

noun

  • The detachable front part of a gun carriage, consisting of two wheels and an axle, a pole, and a frame holding one or more ammunition boxes.

    • ‘Two 12 lb field guns and limbers in the RAN are fitted to the gun carriage configuration.’
    • ‘They are required to carry out a series of manoeuvres with the 1.5 tonne gun and limber, including changing wheels, moving around a track and firing two salvoes of three shells each.’
    • ‘The ammunition limber was the worst for wear and required the most work.’
    • ‘He achieved greater mobility by building lighter gun carriages, and having the guns and limbers drawn by paired horses rather than in tandem, as they had been before.’

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • Attach a limber to (a gun)

    ‘a six-horse limbered gun’
    • ‘Everyone else was spread out in a circular patter, behind some kind of cover, covering the rest of us while our weapons were limbered.’

Origin

Middle English lymour, apparently related to medieval Latin limonarius from limo, limon- ‘shaft’.

Pronunciation

limber

/ˈlɪmbə/