Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Financial, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Like this video? Subscribe to our free daily email and get a new idiom video every day!


1. verb To move or happen at a slower pace than someone or something else. Why are you guys lagging behind? Pick up the pace! We had thought the turnout for these events would pick up, but it's really lagged behind our estimates.
2. noun A period of time between two events or actions. The word often indicates a lull or lack of action. I didn't think you were interested in coming—I mean, there was quite a lag between when I sent the invitation and when you responded.

lag behind

To move or happen at a slower pace than someone or something else. Why are you guys lagging behind? Pick up the pace! We had thought the turnout for these events would pick up, but it's really lagged behind our estimates.
See also: behind, lag

lag behind in (something)

To be or become tardy or late in doing something. The bank started putting a lot of pressure on us when we began lagging behind in our mortgage payments. I know that she is an excellent reader and writer for her age, so I don't understand how Sally can be lagging behind in language arts.
See also: behind, lag
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

lag behind in something

to fall behind in something. I am lagging behind in my car payments. She is lagging behind in her homework assignments.
See also: behind, lag

lag behind (someone or something)

to linger behind someone or something; to fall behind someone or something. Come on up here. Don't lag behind us or you'll get lost. Please don't lag behind the donkeys. Come up here with the rest of the hikers.
See also: behind, lag
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

lag behind

1. To fail to maintain the pace or progress of someone or something; straggle: I lagged behind the rest of the hikers and got lost. Don't forget to do your readings for class, or you'll lag behind.
2. To proceed or develop with comparative slowness: Sales are lagging behind this year compared to last year.
See also: behind, lag
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.
See also:
References in periodicals archive ?
Some people use sleeping tablets to try to alleviate jet lag. This is a dangerous approach as sleeping pills induce a comatose state with little or no natural body movement, and it is well known that prolonged immobility during flight can lead to fatal blood clots (deep vein thrombosis).
A somehow increased risk for occupational injuries was then reported on days having highest [] (lag 0 and lag 1) and [T.sub.max] (i.e., > 95th percentile).
Models were adjusted using a thin plate regression spline for temporal trend and seasonality (4-7 df per year), mean daily temperature at single-day lags of 3 or 5 days (2 or 3 df), and mean daily relative humidity at single-day lag 3 (2 or 3 df), following the methodology used by the ESCALA project (Romieu et al.
So no matter how much you whip your people, the lag will always be there, and that's because of the information gap.
Equity returns exhibit very low autocorrelations, while those for the CDS market are much larger in magnitude, especially at the first lag. Cross-autocorrelations also differ markedly.
To work in the burst frame, a cosmological correction was realized to the spectral lag ([tau] = [[tau].sub.0][[1 + z].sup.-1]).
Ubique's proprietary "Lag Sensing" Swarmio[TM] technology platform drastically reduces lag through dynamic optimization, and hosts an intelligent lobby system for thousands of multiplayer and e-sports games.
You are less likely to feel jet lag if you arrive at your destination in the evening and then stay awake until bedtime.
The next day the patient was operated on where the fracture was fixed with a third-generation short Gamma nail (Stryker, Kalamzoo, USA), using a set screw to control rotation of the lag screw.
Lag BaOmer, the Jewish holiday that marks the 33rd of the 50 days between Passover and Shavuot, a period known as the Omer, begins at sunset.
Along with R&R, home leave, family getaways and the logging of welcome mileage points in the skies comes the bane of many travelers: desynchronosis syndrome, otherwise known as jet lag.
Fixation used an intra-medullary nail (10-12 mm in diameter), a lag screw (8.0mm diameter) and a derotation screw (Hip pin-6.4 mm in diameter).