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hur·dle / ˈhərdl/ • n. 1. an upright frame, typically one of a series, that athletes in a race must jump over. ∎  (hurdles) a hurdle race: the women's 100-meter hurdles.2. an obstacle or difficulty: there are many hurdles to overcome.3. chiefly Brit. a portable rectangular frame strengthened with willow branches or wooden bars, used as a temporary fence. ∎  a horse race over a series of such frames: a handicap hurdle. ∎ hist. a frame on which traitors were dragged to execution.• v. 1. [intr.] [often as n.] (hurdling) take part in a race that involves jumping hurdles. ∎  [tr.] jump over (a hurdle or other obstacle) while running.2. [tr.] enclose or fence off with hurdles.