fall back


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fall back

1. To retreat or withdraw. I fell back when I noticed a gang of teenagers up ahead. Oh please, Grandpa is never one to fall back from his beliefs—you won't change his mind.
2. To recede or move away. The clouds are starting to fall back so that the sun can peek through.
3. To depend on someone or something that one has kept in reserve. In this usage, the phrase is usually "fall back on (someone or something)." With all of these medical bills, I just don't have any more money to fall back on. We can fall back on a few other babysitters if Jane can't make it.
See also: back, fall

fall back

to move back from something; to retreat from something. The gang members fell back, and I took that opportunity to get away. The troops fell back to regroup.
See also: back, fall

fall back

1. Give ground, retreat, as in The troops fell back before the relentless enemy assault, or He stuck to his argument, refusing to fall back. [c. 1600]
2. Recede, as in The waves fell back from the shore. [c. 1800]
See also: back, fall

fall back

v.
1. To give ground; retreat: After an unsuccessful attempt to retake the city, the soldiers fell back.
2. To recede: The waves fell back, leaving frothy white bubbles on the sand.
3. fall back on To use something as a substitute or backup: If we run out of cash, we will have to fall back on the money in our savings account.
4. fall back on To rely on someone or something for support: At least I can fall back on my friends in times of need.
See also: back, fall

fall back

on/upon
1. To rely on: fall back on old friends in time of need.
2. To resort to: I had to fall back on my savings when I was unemployed.
See also: back, fall
References in periodicals archive ?
Lead researcher Ana Lopez told SINC that the objectives of the new study were: "To understand the factors linked to treatment outcomes, in order to help people get the right kind of treatment, reduce their chances of abandoning the treatment, ensure they stop using drugs and don't fall back into the habit".
For example, a coach who wishes to utilize the 2-2-1 full-court press (the # 2) and then fall back into a 1-3-1 half-court zone (the # 3) can do so with a simple and easy call--"23.
x] emissions fall back on countries in the region as acid rain, says Tracey Holloway, who is also an atmospheric scientist at Princeton.
You've got to fall back, fall back,'' Malone yelled at Odom, who was bodying up Milwaukee Bucks forward Marcus Fizer on defense.
This frigid barrier causes water vapor to condense and fall back into the troposphere.
Politicians must promote policies that keep America and its workforce as global leaders, not fall back to the failed notions of economic isolationism and protectionism," said Thomas Donohue, Chamber President and CEO.
Water or ice erupting through the cracks may fall back down as snow, which blocks more sunlight than ice does.
The current account of the balance of payments, which generated a surplus in 2003 for the first time in ten years, is likely to fall back into a small deficit this year because of an expected rebound in domestic demand.
Neanderthals would suddenly jolt awake, take a look around them, feel a little paranoid and check twice for goblins, make sure their leg wasn't being gnawed off by something, mumble ``ugga bugga'' to themselves, then fall back to sleep.
People could fall back asleep much more easily after waking in the middle of the night.
The American Safety & Health Institute (ASHI), a not-for-profit association of professional safety & health educators, is continuing their commitment to first aid training by celebrating the second annual Fall Back on First Aid Day, Saturday, October 25, 2003.
And when you hit a snag, you don't have a foundation to fall back on to get back on track.
Previous studies have shown that certain plants acclimatize to the higher concentrations of the gas: Within 3 years, their photosynthetic rates fall back to those of control plants.
What's easiest for me is to fall back into myself, fall back into the songs, the emotions that caused me to write this song, and feed off that - become a martyr for the music and be devoured on stage,'' she says.