from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To strike or cause to come into contact: She bonked her head going through the low doorway.
  • intransitive v. To collide against something: His head bonked against the wall as he fell.
  • n. A blow to the head.
  • n. A hollow thud.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To strike or collide with something.
  • v. To have sexual intercourse.
  • v. To hit something with the front wheels of the skateboard, whilst in the air, this pre-dates the snowboarding term,
  • v. To hit something (especially a tree) with one's snowboard, especially while in the air.
  • v. To experience sudden and severe fatigue in an endurance sports event due to glycogen depletion.
  • n. A bump on the head.
  • n. Any minor collision or random meeting.
  • n. An act of sexual intercourse.
  • n. A condition of sudden, severe fatigue in an endurance sports event caused by glycogen depletion.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. hit hard
  • v. have sexual intercourse with


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition




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  • This word is also used widely by endurance athletes. It is a name for the point reached during exercise at which the body has depleted its glycogen reserves and feels as though there is absolutely no energy or fuel in the body to draw from. Roughly equivalent to "hitting the wall."

    Examples from An Ironman is Forever by Tammy Smith (

    "If an athlete fails to notice their nutritional needs, they may feel dizzy, disoriented and extremely tired. To triathletes, this is known as the sensation of "bonking."

    "Before you start to bonk, you start to see stars and get kind of loopy, your muscles no worky," says 31 year old Juan Lang who is training for the Ironman Wisconsin Collegiate Championships in September. "When I actually start to bonk I start to lose coordination and judgment and it becomes kind of dangerous. It's totally dependent on whether you've had enough calories. I've actually seen someone just fall over off her bike."

    "I know when I'm bonking because I look over and think "Oh, it would really nice if I could just go to sleep in that patch of shade right there," says Iley.

    She remembers her worst bonk during the World's Toughest Triathlon in Auburn 2003. "It was during the run and all of a sudden I didn't know where I was and I was so disoriented that I didn't remember the last mile that I'd run. I was so dehydrated. I ended up in the fire station with four firemen around me asking if I was okay and feeding me water."

    June 16, 2009

  • A staple word of the British tabloid press.

    February 5, 2008

  • Your point being?

    October 27, 2007

  • Knob in reverse.

    July 22, 2007

  • O the glory days of youth, the exuberance of childhood, of bonking one's peers on the head with a wiffle bat.

    June 25, 2007