backpedal


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back·ped·al

 (băk′pĕd′l)
intr.v. back·ped·aled, back·ped·al·ing, back·ped·als or back·ped·alled or back·ped·al·ling
1. To move the pedals of a bicycle or similar vehicle backward, especially to apply a brake.
2. To move backward by taking short quick steps, as in boxing or football.
3. To retreat or withdraw from a position or attitude: The senator later backpedaled on the issue.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.backpedal - pedal backwards on a bicyclebackpedal - pedal backwards on a bicycle  
bicycle, bike, pedal, wheel, cycle - ride a bicycle
2.backpedal - step backwards, in boxingbackpedal - step backwards, in boxing    
step - shift or move by taking a step; "step back"
3.backpedal - modify one's opinion, make it less strong
rethink - change one's mind; "He rethought his decision to take a vacation"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.

backpedal

verb
To move in a reverse direction:
Idiom: retrace one's steps.
The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The stance adopted by the Arab ministers conveys an obvious message to the international sports bodies, the minister said, expressing hope the latter would backpedal on the suspension decision and allow Kuwaiti athletes to participate in international Olympic activities "under the flag of their country." Earlier today, the Arab ministers called on international sports institutions to backpedal on their decision to suspend Kuwaiti sports activities, and to allow Kuwaiti athletes to partake in world sports events "under the flag of their country".
25, one week after his son was detained as part of a corruption investigation, has said he has not changed his mind about relinquishing his status as a deputy, which is still in effect, adding that he will not backpedal on the issue.
A busy Neal then had to backpedal rapidly to deny Randall as the midfielder's audacious 45-yard effort almost caught him napping.
Didn't enjoy watching him backpedal last week and grateful this decision has been made.
The daily cited unnamed sources as saying that Baragwanath informed Lebanese officials whom he has met that all of the court's "verdicts will be issued within three years", adding that claims that the tribunal might stop its mission or "change its trajectory, go against [what is happening] in reality." According to the sources, the STL President clearly stated that the court will not backpedal on its mission.
Backpedal through the combusting office-spaces, the one-
As the DB continues his backpedal, he must pump his elbows behind him, keeping them flexed at 90 degrees.
We of course don't want to minimize the radical social ethic of the reign of God nor backpedal on the prophetic critique of our deformed culture, but we must also recall how we ourselves have been shown grace in Christ, and reach out accordingly.
A move to the common enterprise model, wherein faculty demonstrate "a willingness occasionally to sacrifice for the collective good." ("Occasionally" seems a Last minute backpedal of sorts.)
It's hard to believe that their advice to him was "backpedal like a fiend." If nothing else, the fact that so many Democratic insiders felt that Lieberman had sold the campaign out on national television would seem to indicate the opposite.
In a November 1998 statement, he had to backpedal: "As you periodically scan the skies, remember it's not a bird, it's not a plane--it's a pig flying in Florida!" So what are the changes?
If you sense that someone is intentionally insulting you, look them in the eye and say something like "You're not putting black people down, are you?" If you say exactly what they're doing, they will probably backpedal, Horn says.