Definition of cleat in English:


Syllabification: cleat
Pronunciation: /klēt


  • 1A T-shaped piece of metal or wood, especially on a boat or ship, to which ropes are attached.
    More example sentences
    • The new facility would come complete with mooring cleats for tying boats, which provides proper access to solid ground and more security for the boats.
    • They shout orders while the voyage crew, the 30 of us aboard for the day, struggle with oversized ropes and cleats under the guidance of the volunteer crew.
    • In addition the cleats on both the docks and boats need to be upgraded.
  • 1.1One of a number of projecting pieces of metal, rubber, or other material on the sole of a shoe, designed to prevent the wearer from losing their footing.
    More example sentences
    • Soccer players should also wear shoes with cleats or ribbed soles to prevent slipping.
    • Its composite platform is designed to optimize the pedal/shoe interface by using a unique cleat design which is adjustable in four directions for a highly tunable fit.
    • They also work with shims on the shoe sole under the cleats.
  • 1.2 (cleats) North American Athletic shoes with a cleated sole, typically used when playing football.
    More example sentences
    • I saw cleats, track spikes, wedding and prom-fancy pumps, reef walkers, scrubs, ballet slippers, figure skates, and one pair of Uggs.
    • He was dressed for soccer, too, with regular athletic socks on with his cleats, instead of the standard soccer gear.
    • He shows no signs of slowing down at the age of 35, when most players have traded their cleats for slippers or golf spikes.
  • 1.3An attachment for the sole of a cyclist’s shoe which clips on to a pedal, keeping the foot in place while cycling and increasing the application of force to the pedal: I think more or less everyone who has used cleats has fallen off at some stage
    More example sentences
    • When a rider can't disengage his cleats from the pedals before falling over, it's called a foot fault.
    • On a bike, the shoe/cleat connection is the point from which all power and biomechanical stability originate.
    • This accident is a reminder to check cleats and pedals for wear.
  • 1.4A projection on a spar or other part of a ship, to prevent slipping.
    More example sentences
    • The cleats give the metal edges another level of defense against wind uplift.
  • 1.5A small wedge, especially one on a plow or scythe.



More example sentences
  • Imagine a time without guidebooks, when all routes were first ascents, when hemp ropes and cleated boots were de rigueur.
  • Also, plastic cleated shoes work well on muddy fields.
  • People passed frequently on the adjacent dirt road; most wore cleated boots, which identified them as enemy soldiers.


Middle English (in the sense 'wedge'); related to Dutch kloot 'ball, sphere' and German Kloss 'clod, dumpling', also to clot and clout.

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