In or into a position in which the hands are on the hips and the elbows are bowed outward: children standing akimbo by the fence.
1. Placed in such a way as to have the hands on the hips and the elbows bowed outward: children standing with arms akimbo.
2. Being in a bent, bowed, or arched position: "There he remained, dead to the world, limbs akimbo, until we left" (Alex Shoumatoff).
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.