from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. An act of employing or putting into play; use: the free exercise of intellect; the exercise of an option.
- n. The discharge of a duty, function, or office.
- n. Activity that requires physical or mental exertion, especially when performed to develop or maintain fitness: took an hour of vigorous daily exercise at a gym.
- n. A task, problem, or other effort performed to develop or maintain fitness or increase skill: a piano exercise; a memory exercise.
- n. An activity having a specified aspect: an undertaking that was an exercise in futility.
- n. A program that includes speeches, presentations, and other ceremonial activities performed before an audience: graduation exercises.
- transitive v. To put into play or operation; employ: Proceed, but exercise caution.
- transitive v. To bring to bear; exert: "The desire to be re-elected exercises a strong brake on independent courage” ( John F. Kennedy).
- transitive v. To subject to practice or exertion in order to train, strengthen, or develop: exercise the back muscles; exercise the memory.
- transitive v. To put through exercises: exercise a platoon. See Synonyms at practice.
- transitive v. To carry out the functions of: exercise the role of disciplinarian.
- transitive v. To execute the terms of (a stock option, for example).
- transitive v. To absorb the attentions of, especially by worry or anxiety.
- transitive v. To stir to anger or alarm; upset: an injustice that exercised the whole community.
- intransitive v. To take exercise.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Any activity designed to develop or hone a skill or ability.
- n. Physical activity intended to improve strength and fitness.
- v. To set into action or practice.
- v. To perform any activity designed to develop or hone a skill or ability.
- v. To take action, enforce.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. 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.
- n. Exertion for the sake of training or improvement whether physical, intellectual, or moral; practice to acquire skill, knowledge, virtue, perfectness, grace, etc.
- n. Bodily exertion for the sake of keeping the organs and functions in a healthy state; hygienic activity.
- n. The performance of an office, a ceremony, or a religious duty.
- n. 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
- n. That which gives practice; a trial; a test.
- transitive v. 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.
- transitive v. 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
- transitive v. 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.
- transitive v. To put in practice; to carry out in action; to perform the duties of; to use; to employ; to practice
- intransitive v. To exercise one's self, as under military training; to drill; to take exercise; to use action or exertion; to practice gymnastics.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A carrying on or out in action; active performance or fulfilment; a physical or mental doing or practising: used of the continued performance of the functions, or observance of the requirements, of the subject of the action: as, the exercise of an art, a trade, or an office; the exercise of religion, of patience, etc.
- n. Voluntary action of the body or mind; exertion of any faculty; practice in the employment of the physical or mental powers: used absolutely, or with reference to the reflex effect of the action upon the actor: as, to take exercise in the open air; corporeal or spiritual exercise; violent, hurtful, pleasurable, or healthful exercise.
- n. A specific mode or employment of activity; an exertion of one or more of the physical or mental powers; practice in the use of a faculty or the faculties, as for the attainment of skill or facility, the accomplishment of a purpose, or the like: as, an exercise in horsemanship; exercises of the memory; outdoor exercises.
- n. A disciplinary task or formulary; something done or to be done for the attainment of proficiency or skill; a set or prescribed performance for improvement, or an example or study for improving practice: as, school exercises; an exercise in composition or music; exercises for the piano or violin.
- n. A performance or procedure in general; a definite or formal act for a purpose; specifically, a feature or part of a program or round of proceedings: as, the exercises of a college commencement, or of a public meeting; graduating exercises.
- n. A spiritual or religious action or effort; an act or procedure of devotion or for spiritual improvement; religious worship, exhortation, or the like.
- n. Specifically— Among the Puritans, a church service or week-day sermon: still occasionally used.
- n. Family worship. [Scotch.]
- n. Formerly, in Scotland, the critical explication of a passage of Scripture, at a meeting of presbytery, by a teaching presbyter, succeeded by a specification of the doctrines contained in it by another, both discourses being judged of, and censured, if necessary, by the rest of the brethren.
- n. Formerly, also, the presbytery.
- n. A disciplinary spiritual experience or trial; spiritual agitation.
- To put in practice; carry out in action; perform the functions or duties of: as, to exercise authority or power; to exercise an office.
- To put in action; employ actively; set or keep in a state of activity; make use of in act or procedure: as, to exercise the body, the voice, etc.; to exercise the reason or judgment; exercise your skill in this work.
- To train or discipline by means of exertion or practice; put or keep in practice; make, or cause to make, specific trials: as, to exercise one's self in music; to exercise troops.
- To give mental occupation or exercise to; cause to think earnestly or anxiously; make uneasy: as, he is exercised about his spiritual state.
- To impart as an effect; put forth as a result or consequence; communicate; exert.
- Synonyms To apply.
- To drill.
- To try, afflict, pain, annoy.
- To use action or exertion; exert one's self; take exercise: as, to exercise for health or amusement.
- To conduct a religious exercise, as the exposition of Scripture.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. the activity of exerting your muscles in various ways to keep fit
- v. put to use
- n. (usually plural) a ceremony that involves processions and speeches
- n. the act of using
- n. a task performed or problem solved in order to develop skill or understanding
- v. give a workout to
- v. carry out or practice; as of jobs and professions
- v. learn by repetition
- v. do physical exercise
- n. systematic training by multiple repetitions
Middle English, from Old French exercice, from Latin exercitium, from exercitus, past participle of exercēre, to exercise : ex-, ex- + arcēre, to restrain.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin exercitium (Wiktionary)