put (one) through (one's) paces(redirected from put them through their paces)
put (one) through (one's) paces
To thoroughly test or examine one so as to evaluate one's worth, ability, or functionality. I hope you're prepared for a lot of testing at your interview—the company really puts applicants through their paces, to make sure they can handle the stress of the job.
put someone through his or her paces
Test thoroughly to see what someone can do, as in We put the new programmer though her paces, and she passed with flying colors. The idiom can refer to things as well, as in When we put the electrical system through its paces, we blew a fuse. The expression alludes to testing a horse's ability in the various paces (trot, canter, and gallop). Its use referring to horses dates from the late 1700s; its figurative use was first recorded in 1871.
put someone/something through their paces
COMMON If you put someone or something through their paces, you make them show you how well they can do something. The British coach, Ian Irwin, is putting the boxers through their paces. Dozens of tanks are being put through their paces to check that they're running correctly. Note: You can also say that someone or something goes through their paces if they show what they can do. After watching the machine go through its paces, he asked if it could be adapted to cook other foods. Note: To put a horse through its paces means to test it to see how well it has been trained.
put someone or something through their pacesmake someone or something demonstrate their qualities or abilities.
put somebody/something through their/its ˈpacestest somebody’s/something’s ability to do something by making them/it show how well they/it can actually perform certain actions, tasks, etc: We watched the trainer putting the police dog through its paces. ♢ They’re putting the new machinery through its paces.
These expressions refer to judging the performance of a horse before deciding to buy it.
put (someone) through (someone's) paces
To cause to demonstrate ability or skill; test: The drama coach put her students through their paces before the first performance.