Break a leg

Learn the meaning and story behind "Break a leg" and its role in wishing someone good luck in English.


Ever heard someone shout “Break a leg!” and wondered why they’re wishing harm on someone? Don’t worry, they’re actually doing the opposite! This quirky idiom is all about sending good vibes and luck.

Here’s a quick guide to make “Break a leg” a hit with the kids!

What does “Break a leg” mean?

First things first, no one’s getting hurt here! “Break a leg” is a fun way to wish someone good luck, especially before a big performance or event. So, if your little one has a school play or a dance recital coming up, toss them a cheerful “Break a leg!”

Where does “Break a leg” come from?

Imagine stepping onto a stage, the spotlight’s bright and the audience’s eyes all on you. Nervous? Just whisper, “Break a leg!” to yourself. It’s the theater’s quirky way of wishing luck without saying it.

”Break a leg” isn’t just a quirky saying; it’s a wish for good luck in the theater world, where saying “good luck” directly is considered bad luck. This fun phrase is thought to encourage the opposite outcome, so wishing someone to “break a leg” is actually hoping for their success on stage.

Stemming from a blend of superstitions and sayings from the 20th-century American theater, it’s all about hoping for a performance so dazzling, it’s like making an energetic leap on stage.

How to use “Break a leg”

Ready for the spotlight? Here’s how your child can start using “Break a leg”:

  • “Break a leg at your spelling bee, Sarah!"
  • "You’re giving a presentation? Break a leg!"
  • "Dad, break a leg at your big meeting today!”

Other show-stopping ways to say “Good Luck”

Tired of the same old boring phrases when you’re trying to wish someone good luck? Here are some fresh alternatives:

  • Knock ‘em dead - Go out and wow the audience!
  • Go get ‘em! - Be aggressive and confident.
  • You’ve got this - A vote of confidence.

The phrase “Break a leg” is a quirky and entertaining way to wish someone good luck. It’s a great line for your child’s ever-growing language toolkit. Ready for the curtain call? 🎭