handicap


handicap
/han"dee kap'/, n., v., handicapped, handicapping.
n.
1. a race or other contest in which certain disadvantages or advantages of weight, distance, time, etc., are placed upon competitors to equalize their chances of winning.
2. the disadvantage or advantage itself.
3. any disadvantage that makes success more difficult: The main handicap of our business is lack of capital.
4. a physical or mental disability making participation in certain of the usual activities of daily living more difficult.
v.t.
5. to place at a disadvantage; disable or burden: He was handicapped by his injured ankle.
6. to subject to a disadvantageous handicap, as a competitor of recognized superiority.
7. to assign handicaps to (competitors).
8. Sports.
a. to attempt to predict the winner of (a contest, esp. a horse race), as by comparing past performances of the contestants.
b. to assign odds for or against (any particular contestant) to win a contest or series of contests: He handicapped the Yankees at 2-to-1 to take the series from the Cardinals.
[1640-50; 1870-75 for def. 8; orig. hand i' cap hand in cap, referring to a drawing before a horse race]
Syn. 5. hinder, impede, cripple, incapacitate.
Ant. 5. aid, assist, help.

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In sports and games, a method of offsetting the varying abilities or characteristics of competitors in order to equalize their chances of winning.

Handicapping takes many, often complicated, forms. In horse racing, a track official known as the handicapper may assign weights to horses according to their speed in previous performances; the presumed fastest horse must carry the most weight. In golf, two unequal players may have a close match by allowing the poorer player a handicap, a certain number of uncounted strokes based on earlier performances. In sailboat racing, dissimilar boats compete under handicapping formulas that add time to the faster boats' actual elapsed time for a race; thus, the winner of a race may not be the first to finish but rather the boat that performs best in relation to its design. See also bookmaking; gambling.

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sports
      in sports and games, method of offsetting the varying abilities or characteristics of competitors in order to equalize their chances of winning. Handicapping takes many, often complicated, forms. In horse racing, a track official known as the handicapper may assign weights to horses according to their speed in previous performances; the presumed fastest horse must carry the most weight. In trotting, horses sometimes start at different points; the horse thought to be the best in the race has to run farther than any other. In golf, two unequal players may have a close match by allowing the poorer player a handicap, a certain number of uncounted strokes based on earlier performances. The same system applies to 10-pin bowling. In sailboat racing, dissimilar boats compete under handicapping formulas that add time to the faster boats' actual elapsed time for a race; thus, the winner of a race may be not the first to finish but rather the boat that performs best in relation to its design.

      In the United States the term handicap also denotes the process of setting the odds for two teams in a baseball match, or for the horses in a race, and so on. These odds are assumed to properly reflect the respective winning chances, with a built-in profit margin for the bookmaker (bookmaking) or casino accepting bets according to them. A professional oddsmaker is often called a handicapper in American gambling parlance.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • handicap — [ ɑ̃dikap; ɑ̃dikap ] n. m. • 1827; mot angl., probablt de hand in cap « main dans le chapeau », t. de jeu 1 ♦ Turf Course ouverte à des chevaux dont les chances de vaincre, naturellement inégales, sont égalisées par l obligation faite aux… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Handicap.fr — est un site d actualité et d information destiné à toutes les personnes concernées par le handicap. Ce média indépendant et gratuit, crée en 2002, offre de l information sur toutes les thématiques du handicap. Il informe aussi sur des services et …   Wikipédia en Français

  • handicap — HANDICÁP, handicapuri, s.n. 1. (Sport) Punctaj acordat unui concurent mai slab. ♦ Totalitatea punctelor cu care o echipă a fost pusă în inferioritate de echipa adversă. 2. fig. Greutate, piedică intervenită în munca cuiva. 3. Deficienţă… …   Dicționar Român

  • *handicap — ● handicap nom masculin (anglais handicap, de hand in cap, main dans le chapeau) Épreuve, course ou concours, dans lesquels les concurrents reçoivent ou rendent une avance de temps, de distance, de poids ou de points, de manière qu ils aient tous …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Handicap — auch Handikap (engl. hændikæp ‚Benachteiligung, Vorbelastung, Erschwerung‘) bezeichnet: eine soziale (und/oder körperliche) Benachteiligung aufgrund einer Behinderung im Sport einen Faktor zur Nivellierung unterschiedlicher Leistungsstärken,… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • handicap — hand i*cap (h[a^]n d[i^]*k[a^]p), n. [From hand in cap; perh. in reference to an old mode of settling a bargain by taking pieces of money from a cap.] 1. An allowance of a certain amount of time or distance in starting, granted in a race to the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • hándicap — 1. Voz tomada del inglés handicap (‘desventaja’), que se emplea, en hípica y en algunos otros deportes, con el sentido de ‘prueba en que se imponen desventajas a los mejores participantes, para igualar las posibilidades de todos’: «El resto del… …   Diccionario panhispánico de dudas

  • handicap — / hændikæp/, it. / ɛndikap/ s. ingl. [in origine, gioco d azzardo con monete che si estraevano a sorte da un cappello, alteraz. di hand in cap mano nel cappello ], usato in ital. al masch. 1. a. (sport.) [gara nella quale i diversi valori dei… …   Enciclopedia Italiana

  • handicap — [n1] disadvantage affliction, baggage*, barrier, block, burden, detriment, disability, drawback, encumbrance, hangup*, hindrance, impairment, impediment, injury, limitation, load, millstone, obstacle, psychological baggage*, restriction,… …   New thesaurus

  • handicap — {{/stl 13}}{{stl 7}}[wym. handikap, akcent na pierwszej sylabie] {{/stl 7}}{{stl 8}}rz. mnż I, D. u, Mc. handicappie {{/stl 8}}{{stl 20}} {{/stl 20}}{{stl 12}}1. {{/stl 12}}{{stl 7}} czynnik mobilizujący, ułatwiający zrobienie czegoś;… …   Langenscheidt Polski wyjaśnień

  • handicap — ► NOUN 1) a condition that markedly restricts a person s ability to function physically, mentally, or socially. 2) a disadvantage imposed on a superior competitor in sports such as golf and horse racing in order to make the chances more equal. 3) …   English terms dictionary


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