Definition of instep in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈinˌstep/


1The part of a person’s foot between the ball and the ankle.
Example sentences
  • Open your stance slightly, play the ball back - opposite the instep of your right foot - and make a steep, aggressive swing.
  • Your stance should be open, and you should play the ball off your left instep.
  • Even the non-gymnasts could see that Miss Korbut wore a bandage of tape on her left ankle and instep for some of the routines, and Miss Tourischeva had an elastic brace on her left knee.
1.1The part of a shoe that fits over or under the instep of a foot.
Example sentences
  • Always be sure that your pants break over your shoe instep to create the illusion of a longer leg.
  • Iron and stone were used for footwear and some 13th-Century, middle-class citizens wore shoes with insteps inlaid with diamonds and rubies.
  • The most popular ones are those with a single band going across the instep.
1.2A thing shaped like the inner arch of a foot.


Late Middle English: of unknown origin; compare with West Frisian ynstap 'opening in a shoe for insertion of the foot'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: in·step

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