Winning Hands Down

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This is an interesting one, when you win very easily you win hands down. So just what is the origin of this phrase?

Well presumably we need to look at a game or sport where you can win so easily that you don't need to do much with your hands.

Now we come to think of boxing, naturally, as a sport that is surely all about using your hands to punch and fight.

Now some great fighters let their guard down - literally put their hands down - to make a statement to their opponent that even with their guard down they are still good enough to win - and so this is the phrase winning with their hands down, they are just so much better they don't even have to try really hard to win, and so the phrase entered the vernacular as a result of this.

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