a limp handshake

"Limp" means "soft" and "weak". Imagine a French fry that's been left out for a few hours. It's not crispy any longer; it hangs down when you hold it and feels soft. That's the meaning of "limp".

A "limp" handshake is when someone shakes hands without enough pressure. The correct handshake is a firm handshake. This means to grab the other person's hand and squeeze it just a little bit. But some people just hold the other person's hand without squeezing. This is called a "limp" handshake, and most people don't like it.

Other examples of "limp" things include:

  • Someone's body when they're dead, asleep, or passed out.
  • Hair that's thin or oily.

The word "limp" is also used in some embarassing sexual situations. Use your imagination to figure out what that might be.

This phrase appears in these lessons: