kick back(redirected from kick-back)
Also found in: Dictionary, Medical, Legal, Financial, Encyclopedia.
Like this video? Subscribe to our free daily email and get a new idiom video every day!
1. verb To recoil, as of a gun that has been fired. If you're not careful, that rifle will bruise your shoulder when it kicks back.
2. verb To relax, typically by reclining and/or engaging in a sedentary activity. Often used in the phrase "kick back and relax." After a long day of yardwork, I love to kick back and relax on a lawn chair with a tall glass of lemonade. I like going to the movies, but I prefer kicking back with a good book at home.
3. noun A percentage of a profit paid to someone who facilitated the profit, typically through illegal means, such as using a government position to ease restrictions on a business deal. In this usage, the phrase is often hyphenated or written as one word. The politician was receiving kickbacks for years, and now the full extent of his corruption has been revealed.
4. noun The recoil of a gun. In this usage, the phrase is often hyphenated or written as one word. Careful, that rifle's got a heck of a kickback.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
kick something back (to someone or something)
to move something back to someone, something, or some place by kicking. I kicked the ball back to Walter. He kicked it to me, and I kicked it back.
kick back (at someone or something)
to kick at someone or something in revenge. She kicked at me, so I kicked back at her. If you kick me, I'll kick back.
1. Inf. to relax; to lean back and relax. (See also lie back.) I really like to kick back and relax. It's time to kick back and enjoy life.
2. . Inf. [for an addict] to return to an addiction or a habit, after having "kicked the habit." Lefty kicked back after only a few days of being clean. A lot of addicts kick back very soon.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. Recoil unexpectedly and violently, as in This rifle kicks back a lot when you fire it. [Early 1800s]
2. Return stolen property to the owner, as in The pawnbroker kicked back the paintings to the gallery. [Colloquial; first half of 1900s]
3. Pay back a part of one's earnings, as in The workers were forced to kick back half their pay to the agent. [Colloquial; first half of 1900s]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. To return something by kicking it: I'll roll the ball to you, and then you kick it back. The goalie kicked back the soccer ball.
2. To recoil unexpectedly and violently: Be careful with that power saw—if it kicks back, you could be badly injured. Hold the rifle tightly—otherwise it will kick back and bruise your shoulder.
3. To relax, especially by resting: I was too tired to work last night, so I just kicked back at home and watched TV.
4. Slang To pay someone in return for an illegal favor: The corrupt official kicked $1,000 back to the politicians who helped him get the grant money. If you can kick back some of your profits, I'll make sure you win that contract.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. in. to relax (and enjoy something). I like to kick back and listen to a few tunes.
2. n. money received in return for a favor. (Usually kickback.) The kickback the cop got wasn’t enough, as it turned out.
3. in. [for an addict] to return to addiction after having been detoxified and withdrawn. (Drugs.) They may kick back a dozen times before it takes.
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.