Practice Makes a Man Perfect: Proverb Meaning and Expansion of idea


The Proverb – ‘Practice Makes a Man Perfect’ professes that when you practice something then you will gain mastery over it. By practice, it means that doing the thing repeatedly for several times. It could be anything like, studying, playing, or anything else. If you keep on repeating the act then you will gain excellence in that particular act or field.

Let’s take the example of a student who has to write an exam after a couple of months. He is particularly weak in math and wants to fare well in the exam. If he practices math regularly, that he will become good in the subject and score well. This is what the proverb wants to convey.

Expansion of idea

The proverb ‘practice makes a man perfect’ indicates that a man can achieve perfection on something if he practices it regularly. The proverb applies to every sphere and is not limited to any specific criterion.

Practice here means an act of repeatedly doing whatever you seek to achieve. It has different meanings for different persons. For students, practice means studying again and again; for a sportsperson, it means practicing the particular sports every day; for a teacher, it means to teach the students, etc. All of these people become perfect in their respective fields only by regularly practicing whatever they do.

That is what being perfect here implies. If you practice a particular thing over and over again, you will get perfect in that particular thing.

Short Stories on ‘Practice Makes a Man Perfect’

A good story written centered on the proverb – ‘practice makes a man perfect’ will let you understand the true meaning of the proverb and the message it seeks to convey. Hopefully, these stories will let you well understand the proverb in an entertaining way.

Short Story 1

There was a boy, living in a village in India. Though he was a hard-working student, he was poor in math. However attentively he listens to the teacher he just couldn’t understand the subject. Everyone, including the teachers, could not improve him, despite their genuine intentions. However, his grandfather, who had also been a teacher in older days, had a plan. The old man was confident that he would be able to make the boy do well, even in the subject that he fears the most – Math.

The old man asked the boy for just one hour every day, not a minute more, not a minute less. In that one hour, the grandfather taught the boy math. But they were much disciplined in following their routine. Come what may, there never missed their session, and continued the same way for months.

Then the exams came. The boy was confused about what to revise as every chapter seems so well versed, thanks to his regular practices. Everyone was surprised when the boy scored the highest marks in math, not only in class but also in the school. When asked about the secret of his success, the boy told that he credits his success to his grandfather. He also told that at the beginning of their everyday math practices his grandfather had told him – ‘Practice makes a man perfect’.

Short Story 2

Once, in Japan there lived a young girl who had always aspired to become a singer. Singing was her passion and that is what she ever wanted to do. She got an instructor who was a much-disciplined guy. He asked the girl to practice on a particular song over and over again, for months, every day. The girl got so frustrated that she ran away and thought of giving up on singing. It so happened that by chance she was eating in a hotel, where a singing competition was going on.

The host asked anyone from the public to sing a song of their choice. The girl agreed and sang the one song she had perfected for months. Her performance was so outstanding that the judge felicitated her and asked who his instructor was? Then the girl realized that his instructor had been a true mentor by making her regularly practicing the same thing to achieve perfection. The girl was no one else but the Japanese singer Fubuki Koshiji.


An example sentence is the best way to understand the meaning of a proverb and its message. I have given below some examples on the proverb – ‘Practice Makes a Man Perfect’. I hope that these examples will give an insight into the proverb and let you understand its true essence.

“A surgeon, who is regularly performing surgeries, becomes so perfect that patients blindly trust him/her with their lives”.

“A pilot has to fly hundreds of hour’s solo before he/she is given the responsibility of a commercial plane because only regular practice makes them perfect enough to be trusted with other’s lives.”

“The goldsmith only perfects his skills through lots and lots of practice.”

“Major Dhyan Chand, the greatest hockey player in history, has made himself so perfect in the sport that he was even called a magician. The ball he chased seems too stuck to his stick. He was able to achieve such a level of perfection, only through practice.”

“Sir Dom Bradman, the highly acknowledged batsman of all times, used to practice for hours every day, during his childhood. He practiced so hard that he had scored his first century at the age of 12.”


The origin of the phrase ‘practice makes a man perfect’ could be traced back to the 1550s. There was a Latin phrase popularly in use – Uses Promtos Facit’ which translates to ‘Use makes perfect’ in English.

Though, it is exactly the same as the phrase but conveys that using something over and over again makes it perfect. Also, the person using that particular thing will get well used to it.

The exact proverb – ‘Practice makes a man perfect’ had appeared in the diary and autobiography of John Adams, an American Statesman, and writer.


The proverb ‘practice makes a man perfect’ is an important proverb in a way that it teaches one of the greatest lessons of life. It fits in for every person who is pursuing his/her dream in any field. The message is simple – if you want to excel in your specific field then you must practice whatever you are doing.

It is only through practice that one will reach perfection and be successful. The phrase is as important for the students as it is for working professionals and businessmen.