Definition of unbalance in English:



  • 1Make (someone or something) unsteady so that they tip or fall.

    ‘the door almost unbalanced him by swinging open’
    • ‘The sudden weight unbalanced me and I fell face first onto the floor.’
    • ‘The opponent's leg can also be lifted to unbalance or to throw the opponent backward.’
    • ‘A high-ranking shihan commits a slight error of timing during his performance and fails to unbalance or even touch his uke.’
    • ‘I managed to wiggle underneath them all, dislodging those on the very top by unbalancing the unsteady column.’
    • ‘The technique, known as galvanic vestibular stimulation, unbalances a person so that they automatically veer left or right in an attempt to rebalance themselves.’
    • ‘Following through, the sudden change in inertia and momentum unbalanced her, and she fell on the bed, then to the floor.’
    • ‘I did try to help by folding his knees under him, but all that did was unbalance him and he ended up bopping the carpet with his nose… oops.’
    • ‘If you have moved to the side of the opponent you can spin, throw, trip, take down, unbalance or control him, or just continue your attack from this position of advantage.’
    • ‘My foot seemed to slide and I was unbalanced by my shopping and unable to right myself with my hands.’
    • ‘‘We couldn't get out because that would have unbalanced the car,’ she recalls.’
    • ‘The force of the blow unbalances him, and he falls backwards onto the ground.’
    unstable, rocky, wobbly, wobbling, rickety, shaky, shaking, tottery, tottering, teetering, unsafe, unbalanced, unreliable, insecure, not secure, unfastened, unsecured, movable, precarious
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  • 2Upset or disturb the equilibrium of (a situation or person's state of mind)

    ‘this sharing can often unbalance even the closest of relationships’
    • ‘Sugar unbalances the endocrine system, which includes the adrenal glands, pancreas and liver, causing the blood-sugar level to fluctuate widely.’
    • ‘My concentration levels had unbalanced the chemistry in my brain to the point that I was borderline hallucinating and convinced I was somehow telepathically influencing my opponent.’
    • ‘I've said it more than once: recent world events have unbalanced the judgement of a lot of people of the well-meaning, right-thinking classes.’
    • ‘Does this also mean that it was also very tightly written, that there was nothing you could cut out without unbalancing everything?’
    • ‘During this time Hanover lost their influential midfielder Sean Kavanagh through injury and this had the effect of temporarily unbalancing their midfield sector.’
    • ‘Those around him worry that her death has unbalanced him, though his narrative voice is sane, if eccentric.’
    • ‘And this, one could argue, slightly unbalances the film - all of the Palestinians are civilians and all the Israelis are in uniform.’
    • ‘Hanks' fatal miscasting and timid performance unbalances a film that is already too careful to thrill.’
    • ‘The latter scene is great drama but seems just slightly too strong for the film, it unbalances what had until that point been a perfectly constructed piece.’
    • ‘Somewhat incongruously, and much to Plater's displeasure, for financing reasons the serial was divided into seven parts rather six, which inevitably unbalances the symmetry of the story.’
    • ‘Spiralling property prices have unbalanced local economies, while small communities have suffered the closure of schools, post offices, shops and petrol stations.’
    • ‘The repressed laughter, the panic, the forced coughing and the exasperation of listening to Sava's story for the second time must have unbalanced his delicate liver functions.’
    • ‘It would also have been wiser if Lee, playing an unconvincing television reporter, had refrained from appearing in the movie himself as his highly recognisable presence unbalances proceedings a little.’
    • ‘Mac could not help feeling that Staten had taken the view that the state of his mind had been unbalanced by recent events.’
    • ‘His threat to allow judges to reveal previous convictions of an accused to a jury in limited circumstances would rip the blindfold off Lady Justice and unbalance her already precariously tipping scales.’
    • ‘So, unbalancing her in one direction are forces of self-disgust and disillusion.’
    • ‘Some of the younger actors from above stairs fail to make an impact which slightly unbalances the cast.’
    • ‘But Depp upstages everyone, getting big laughs every time he comes on - funnier even than his excellent turn in Pirates of the Caribbean - and unbalancing the movie.’
    unstable, of unsound mind, mentally ill, deranged, demented, crazed, troubled, disturbed, unhinged, insane, mad, mad as a hatter, mad as a march hare, raving mad, out of one's mind, not in one's right mind, neurotic, psychotic
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  • A lack of symmetry, balance, or stability.

    ‘an unbalance between the currents in the live and neutral wires’
    mass noun ‘there appears to be very little horizontal stress unbalance’
    • ‘The accumulation of wealth in the western society and no children of homosexuals to inherit them will cause an unbalance someday.’
    • ‘However, any alteration in one, two or in all of these may cause unbalance of the organ itself and a significant, noticeable, aesthetic disturbance to the whole face.’
    • ‘We have identified the psychosomatic traits in modern medicine linked to the reversible unbalance of qi, blood, and body fluid in ill-health.’
    • ‘Someone I won't get defensive with, because getting defensive is a sign of unbalance for me.’
    • ‘When motion occurs, the situation is dynamic and an unbalance of forces is present.’
    • ‘The analysis was repeated by controlling for surgical treatment and stage at diagnosis to assess whether the effect of ethnicity on lung cancer survival persisted after adjusting for unbalances in these factors.’
    • ‘An unbalance in the proportions of these humors was believed to be the cause of ill health.’
    • ‘Doctors studied a patient's urine to detect if there was any unbalance.’
    • ‘And it's a very systematic strategy, which keeps people in a situation of fear and emotional unbalance, in not really knowing what to expect.’
    • ‘But we had a lot of grip with the car and a little bit of an unbalance.’
    • ‘No matter how it's played, though, Rabbit Run exists in a very compelling state of continual unbalance.’
    • ‘This is a couple of country miles from the way mental unbalance is delicately suggested by Henry James.’
    • ‘Yes I am, but even so my powers are still very weak and they will not improve until this unbalance is lifted.’
    • ‘Meygan was laughing so hard she would have shaken the ladder to the point of unbalance if it weren't for Rachel and Nikki holding her steady.’
    • ‘I stepped away from the railing and peered up at him, trying to convey my unbalance and confusion about everything that had happened between us.’
    • ‘But I refer to the teachings - and the unbalance this has caused in our lives - the focus I cannot maintain and still be an official.’
    • ‘The dizzying concoction of living in a moment that feels right or wrong and then being thrust ‘forward’ to the source of the decision that created that moment leaves the viewer in a constant state of unbalance.’
    • ‘In this model, the added unbalance induces a positive correlation between the expected family value and corresponding family size.’
    • ‘He broke from the gate rather hard on his front feet, causing unbalance on his part.’
    • ‘The slight unbalance and distraction (here a loud shout or kiai could also be added) weakens the grab, something that facilitates forcing your arms upwards.’