Hit below the belt


      • Unfair or unsportsmanlike behavior
        Describing actions or words that are unethical, inappropriate, or take advantage of someone's weaknesses or vulnerabilities.

      • Low blow or attack
        Describing a physical or verbal attack that is directed towards sensitive or private areas, such as the stomach or personal beliefs.

      • Cross a line or boundary
        Describing actions or words that go beyond what is considered acceptable or appropriate, causing discomfort or harm to the recipient.

    Examples of Hit below the belt

    • After losing the important game, the opposing team's coach made a comment about our star player's personal life, which was considered as hitting below the belt.

      The idiom "hit below the belt" refers to an unfair or underhanded attack on someone, especially when it involves criticizing or attacking their personal life, rather than their actions or abilities related to the topic at hand. In this example, the opposing team's coach made a comment about our star player's personal life, which was not related to the game they just played, and it was considered as an unfair and underhanded attack, as it involved criticizing their personal life.


    The idiom "hit below the belt" is typically used to describe behavior or actions that are unethical or unfair. It can also refer to physical or verbal attacks that target sensitive areas or beliefs. Additionally, it can be used to convey the idea of crossing a line or boundary that is considered acceptable.

    Origin of "Hit below the belt"

    The origin of this idiom can be traced back to the sport of boxing, where there are rules in place to protect the safety and well-being of the fighters. One of these rules is that punches should not be directed below the belt, as this area is considered a low blow and can cause significant harm. Therefore, "hit below the belt" became a common phrase to describe any action that goes outside the boundaries of fair play.

    Over time, the idiom has evolved to encompass a wider range of behaviors and actions that are seen as unethical or inappropriate. It is now commonly used in everyday language to describe any action or words that are considered unfair or hurtful. The phrase has also been adapted to non-physical contexts, such as in business or personal relationships, to describe actions that are seen as crossing a line or boundary. Overall, the origin of this idiom highlights the connection between language and sports, as well as the evolution of language over time.