To scuffle means to engage in a brief, disorderly, and often physical fight or struggle. It can also refer to the sound or movement of feet shuffling or dragging along a surface.


US English

UK English

Part of speech

Scuffle is primarily a verb, but it can also function as a noun to describe a physical fight or struggle.


Fight, struggle, brawl, tussle, skirmish, scuffle, scurry, hustle, jostle.


Collaborate, cooperate, aid, assist, help, support.

Example sentences

  • The two boys scuffled on the playground, wrestling each other to the ground.
  • The security guard had to scuffle with the thief to get the stolen goods back.
  • As we walked through the forest, we could hear the scuffle of small animals in the underbrush.
  • The political opponents scuffled over control of the microphone during the heated debate.


The word scuffle typically describes a brief, disorderly, and often physical encounter between people. This can include a fight or struggle, such as when two people scuffle over an object or when a security guard scuffles with a thief to apprehend them. Scuffle can also be used to describe the movement or sound of feet shuffling along a surface, such as when people are hurrying or rushing to get somewhere.

Scuffle is a dynamic word that connotes a certain level of chaos or confusion. It often describes a situation that is intense and physical, but not necessarily violent or aggressive. For example, a group of people might scuffle to get through a crowded doorway or scuffle for position during a game.

The word scuffle can be modified with prefixes or suffixes to alter its meaning slightly. For example, the prefix “re-” can be added to create the word “rescuffle,” which means to engage in a fight or struggle again. The suffix “-ing” can be added to create the word “scuffling,” which refers to the ongoing movement or sound of feet shuffling along a surface.

Overall, scuffle is a versatile word that can be used in a variety of contexts to describe physical encounters or movement. It is often used to describe situations that are intense, disorderly, and energetic