catch (someone) off balance

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catch (someone) off balance

To startle someone; to come upon someone unawares and/or when they are unprepared. Often used in the past tense. The security guard caught the thieves off balance. That essay question on the exam caught me completely off balance. Your opponent is going to try to catch you off balance during the debate, so just be sure to stick to your position.
See also: balance, catch, off
References in periodicals archive ?
The West Derby fighter was the victim of a flash knock down in the first round when he was caught off balance by a big looping left behind the ear.
When you are not as fit you tend to pick up injuries as you are not sharp and you get caught off balance.
TEHRAN: Iran's regime has started to distance itself from militant protesters who stormed Britain's embassy, after seemingly being caught off balance by the retaliatory closure of its mission in London.
I wasn't too hurt, I was more caught off balance but I was ok.
LAST week many traders were caught off balance when Greece -where protests took place yesterday over its required budget cuts - had its credit rating reduced to junk.
Devils' Mike Hartwick, left, has his eyes on the puck as Panthers' David Clarke is caught off balance at the Cardiff Bay Arena last night
Like people in other fields, educators have been caught off balance by a migration of their profession into the online world.
Fields was counted out in the third round against Liam Cotton (Parsons Cross), having gone down after being caught off balance.