Definition of waddle in US English:

waddle

verb

  • no object, with adverbial of direction Walk with short steps and a clumsy swaying motion.

    ‘three geese waddled across the road’
    • ‘He sneers at her approach and waddles forward to block her passage.’
    • ‘I can't remember the last time I was in a zoo; I vaguely recall penguins waddling past me when I was not much taller than they were.’
    • ‘Long queues into the car parks and hundreds of people waddling around with ‘sale’ bags in their hands.’
    • ‘Laughing, he opened the door and lumbered up to her, the shorter man waddling behind him.’
    • ‘She was nearly as wide as she was tall, and waddled like a duck when she walked.’
    • ‘On a recent day, the squawking penguins were busily finding partners, preparing nests and waddling about the mating grounds.’
    • ‘By half seven we were out of the door, heading for the bus stop, Lauren waddling in her short denim skirt and knee-length boots.’
    • ‘So, waddling as fast as she could after the waitress, she ordered onion rings - something appropriate to go with the ketchup, of course.’
    • ‘Sue has been busy this week rescuing a swan that crash landed on the Lechlade road and another that was waddling down Station Road.’
    • ‘Perhaps because they can only waddle from their TV sofa to their car and back again.’
    • ‘As the bus meanders on, ducks waddle across the golf course and red cows and calves amble along the roads.’
    • ‘Two large white geese waddled across our path in leisurely fashion.’
    • ‘So I presume the airline will set a weight ceiling and make everyone who waddles up to the check-in counter step on a scale - probably the baggage scale.’
    • ‘As customers mill about, James waddles up the store's main aisle in search of a white dress shirt for his wedding this Saturday.’
    • ‘Black, brown, orange, yellow, must be a few thousand fluffy little birds, waddling determinedly away from the train that passes noisily above them.’
    • ‘The toddler waddles freely into a neighbourhood yard.’
    • ‘Just then a short man waddled out of a nearby doorway, barely squeezing through.’
    • ‘Now that the main character has a fat belly and can't do anything except waddle around buying baby clothes, the show is guaranteed to be non-stop action and drama.’
    • ‘There's a stiff breeze coming off the Indian Ocean and the surfies are clustered in groups, waddling around in their wetsuits like hipster penguins.’
    • ‘Of course, if we carry on putting on weight as we have been doing, we will all be waddling around in extremely baggy clothes before long.’
    toddle, dodder, wobble, totter, shamble
    View synonyms

noun

  • A waddling gait.

    ‘I walk with a waddle’
    • ‘After a moment, the turtle creeps out of its shell and resumes its waddle across the highway.’
    • ‘Walking is starting to have a slight waddle quality to it.’
    • ‘All the idiosyncrasies for which he was known within his homeland, the hesitant mannerisms and trademark waddle, do not look quite so loveable in the world at large.’
    • ‘We had a walk, or rather a brisk waddle, in the morning, then cold turkey and home-made chutney by the fire for lunch.’
    • ‘One observer compared his action to a duck waddle.’
    • ‘It is rather a celebration of birds in flight (or in waddle, in the case of the flightless penguins), as close to their majestic surroundings as possible.’
    • ‘A sore back explains his painful-looking waddle to the coffee shop.’
    • ‘There's the small head on top of the inflated body - and the waddle.’
    • ‘Even Viktor's stooped, pot-bellied waddle eventually resolves itself into a hearty stride.’
    • ‘Children may walk with toes pointed in or walk with a waddle.’
    • ‘He walked, well I'd like to say walked but it was more of a waddle, to the door and turned the shiny brass doorknob.’
    • ‘This initially affects the muscles of the buttocks and legs, and causes a characteristic waddle when walking.’
    • ‘Without tipping at the shoulders, concentrate on shifting your weight from one skate to the other between each waddle.’
    • ‘With a series of ungainly steps, clumsy lunges, and eventually a kind of painful waddle, he made his way to the phone.’
    • ‘How come the fashion industry is still peddling the image of six-footer, stick-insect girl models with that funny cross-over catwalk waddle?’
    • ‘Zack was fascinated with the baby geese, laughing at their ungainly waddle, watching them as they foraged through the grass.’
    • ‘They attempted to stifle their chuckles and hide their amused smiles as Suna moved towards their table in the manner that could only be described as a waddle.’
    • ‘Perhaps Krishnan senior's ponderous waddle on the court could be excused.’
    • ‘In this form, they manage a penguin-style waddle toward the camera.’
    • ‘The athletic spring that had once been in my step had slid disgracefully into a slothful waddle and I was metamorphosing into a thirty-something marshmallow instead.’

Origin

Late 16th century: perhaps a frequentative of wade.

Pronunciation

waddle

/ˈwɑdl//ˈwädl/