grip on (something)

a grip on (something)

1. A good physical hold on something. In order to remove the bolt, I needed to get a grip on the wrench.
See also: grip, on

grip on (something)

2. A newfound understanding of a topic or concept. The teacher spent extra time going over the material in class because she wanted her students to have a good grip on the subject matter before they took the exam.
See also: grip, on
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

*a grip on something

1. and *a hold on something Lit. a good grasp on something. (*Typically: get ~ have ~ give someone ~.) Try to get a grip on the ropes and pull yourself up. You should get a hold on the knob and turn it firmly.
2. Fig. a thorough knowledge of some topic. (*Typically: get ~ have ~ give someone ~.) I need to have a grip on the basics of accounting. Try to get a hold on all the facts first.
See also: grip, on
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

get a grip on something

COMMON If you get a grip on a difficult situation, you start to understand it and take control of it. So far the country has failed to get a grip on its inflation rate. Note: You can also say that you take a grip on a situation with the same meaning. It is clear that the new leader has taken a grip on the party machine. Note: You can say that you keep a grip on a situation, meaning that you continue to understand and control it. Somehow, this corrupt band of politicians have managed to keep a grip on power.
See also: get, grip, on, something
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
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