lose (one's) footing

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lose (one's) footing

1. To slip, stumble, and/or fall during an activity in which one is using one's feet, such as walking, dancing, climbing, etc. I sprained my ankle when I lost my footing on a hike. Be careful not to lose your footing while you're on the ladder!
2. By extension, to lose one's stability by entering a precarious or unsettling situation. I loved my job, so I really lost my footing when I was laid off. I'm just worried that he'll lose his footing if he drops out of school now—there's no guarantee he'll ever go back.
See also: footing, lose
References in classic literature ?
As he was crossing through the water he lost his footing, stumbled and fell, and not being able to rise on account of his load, groaned heavily.
I know this, because I peeped out and saw the whole bluff-side deserted, save for Saber-Tooth, who had lost his footing and was sliding and falling down.
"Thank you, I will." He laughed rather ruefully, as he described how he had discovered a very rare species of fern in an inaccessible place, and in his efforts to obtain it had lost his footing, and slipped ignominiously into a neighbouring pond.
At this Jukes lost his footing and began to flounder.
A young family had lost their way and ended up in broken and steep ground, where the young boy lost his footing and fell around 100ft.
The inquest heard that "shortly after 8am" Mr Obsioma "lost his footing" as he stepped onto the kerb and fell into the path of the truck, which was driven by Michael Wilkins.
Mateo Arteaga suffered the horror fall after he lost his footing while sitting on the cliff's edge in Shankill, South Dublin.
The teen had been out walking with family close to the cliff edge at Frenchman's Bay, near Marsden, when he lost his footing at around 6.50pm.
Daniel Marchbank, 33, was fishing in the River Kelvin in Glasgow when he lost his footing and was pulled under the water.
But two nights before a reunion dinner, he lost his footing at the top of the hotel stairs.
I think if he hadn't lost his footing he would have stuck that away.
Mark Lloyd, 30, was group leader of a recent six-man trek doing the Snowdon Horseshoe Challenge in aid of Oakenholt's St David's Church, when he lost his footing.
Hayden Waller broke his neck after he lost his footing and plunged 30ft onto rocks while trying to rescue a friend who slipped and fell down the mountain.
THANK-YOU to two - Merseyrail passengers who helped our member of staff at Seaforth and Litherland station on February 17 when a blind gentleman, after alighting from a Southport train, lost his footing and fell on to the railway tracks after the train had left.
The man, in his 30s, lost his footing and slipped on a kerb and fell under the crawling truck.