Sport Idioms in English

Sport Idioms in English (Part 1)

You can’t deny that sport is an important part of our life. It causes great excitement among spectators and supporters. English language is full of sport idioms and English speakers use them all the time.

Here are 5 popular sports idioms that you can use in your everyday life:

1) To throw in the towel

Meaning:  to stop trying to do something, give up. This idiom derives from boxing. When the boxer is suffering a beating, his coach throws a towel into the ring in order to stop the fight.


My company threw in the towel after losing all the customers.

He understood that he was losing the match, so he threw in the towel.

2) To get the ball rolling

Meaning: to get the process started or to start something. This idiom derives from soccer. The match has started when the ball starts rolling.


Can we get the ball rolling and start the meeting?

I have to get the ball rolling with my driving lessons.

3) To be out of someone’s league

Meaning: to be much better or successful than someone else. This idiom comes from baseball.


She is never going to date me. Look at her, she’s definitely out of my league.

This management position is way out of my league. I’ve been working here for only a few months.

4) To drop the ball

Meaning: to make a mess out of something, make a mistake. That’s another idiom that derives from baseball. When a fielder drops a ball, another team gains advantage.


She really dropped the ball when she forgot to call back.

They want to see me fail but I won’t drop the ball.

5) To jump the gun

Meaning: to start something too quickly. The idiom alludes to starting a race before the starting gun shots.


You and Ann met 3 months ago. I think it too early to jump the gun and get married.

She jumped the gun and gave the letters too soon. The boss got really angry.

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