Synonym for Obstacle — Definition, Antonyms, and Examples

Not everything in life goes smoothly, nor do we always…

Not everything in life goes smoothly, nor do we always get what we want. The challenges that prevent us from reaching our goals are called obstacles. They can have physical, psychological, or emotional contexts. An overused synonym for obstacle is “barrier.”

But don’t stop here. Many words are able to describe an obstacle. Let’s go over some of them.

A  barrier with a signage that says
Photo by Raúl Nájera on Unsplash

Definition of the Word “Obstacle.”

According to the English dictionary, the word obstacle refers to anything that prevents something from being achieved. It can also refer to a challenge you might face while pursuing a goal.

Sentence Examples:

  • Spartan Race participants should prepare to meet obstacles.
  • An unreliable internet connection is an obstacle to remote work.
  • This obstacle is prevalent in self-driving cars.
  • His lack of confidence is an obstacle he needs to overcome if he wants to become an actor.

Synonym for Obstacle — Exploring Words with Similar Meanings

The main idea behind an obstacle is that it is something that keeps you from achieving a goal. This definition is broad, therefore, there are plenty of synonyms for “obstacle.” You may want to check a thesaurus if you need more examples apart from the ones below:


An obstruction is anything that blocks, restricts, or impedes the movements of something. We refer to it in a physical context.

For example:

  • The obstruction on the road forced us to take a detour.


An impediment refers to something that limits or impedes an ability. 

For example:

  • Arnold developed a speech impediment after the accident. He has difficulty talking.


A hindrance is a burden or inconvenience that delays action or goal.

For example:

  • The supply chain problems were a significant hindrance to business operations.


A handicap is a condition limiting a person’s ability to compete in certain activities. It is in a physical, psychological, and political context.

For example:

  • handicap introduces a new layer of difficulty to any activity.


This noun refers to a barrier that we have to overcome. As a verb, it refers to jumping over a hurdle.

For example:

  • The quick brown fox jumped over the hurdle gracefully.

Antonyms for Obstacle – Exploring Words with Opposite Meanings

An obstacle impedes progress, while an obstacle antonym should facilitate progress. Here are some examples:


An advantage refers to an ability or trait that increases your chances of succeeding. It also refers to a favorable position or condition.

For example:

  • His keen attention to detail is an advantage over his peers.


A benefit refers to a positive outcome of an action. It also refers to the state of receiving a positive effect from an action.

For example:

  • Regular exercise yields many long-term benefits.


Clearance refers to authority or permission given to a user. It usually describes a document granting one passage through an obstacle or checkpoint.

For example:

  • I have a Level 4 security clearance. I can go anywhere!


As you might already know, there’s always a better way to say and write things. You can drastically improve your fluency by practicing using the precise words that best represent your message. You may also want to check out our guides on other words if you want to learn more.

Frequently asked questions

What are the types of obstacles?

Barriers, obstacles, and stumbling blocks refer to objects, things, actions, or situations that cause obstructions. Physical, economic, biosocial, cultural, political, technological, and military obstacles are different types.

What is an obstacle and examples?

The definition of an obstacle is anything that gets in the way or hinders progress. The fact that many college students do not have the tuition money is one of the obstacles. Your way through an obstacle is blocked from passing each other. noun.

What does obstacle mean in school?

Obstacles make it difficult for you to go where you want to go, since they are in your way.

What is the base word of obstacle?

(n.) and directly from Latin obstaculum “a hindrance, obstacle,” with instrumental suffix *-tlom + obstare “stand before, stand opposite to, block, hinder, thwar.

What are some examples of life obstacles?

  • Resources. A shortage of resources.
  • Health. The time, energy, focus, and resources of individuals are severely affected by health problems.
  • Education
  • Stability
  • Time. As time is a fixed resource, it can be difficult to utilize it.
  • Financial. A lack of funds.
  • Cultural Capital
  • Society

What is obstacle in life meaning?

A problem or obstacle that blocks your progress. In everyday life, disabled people overcome many obstacles.

What are the 20 antonyms?


What is antonyms give 10 examples?

achieve – failgiant – dwarfrandom – specific
arrive – departinnocent – guiltysimple – complicated
arrogant – humbleknowledge – ignorancesingle – married
attack – defendliquid – solidsunny – cloudy
blunt – sharpmarvelous – terribletimid – bold

What is the best definition of obstacle?

Obstacle, obstruction, hindrance, or impediment refers to anything that interferes with or interferes in progress. An obstacle is any thing, material or nonmaterial, that stands in the way of representation or progression: Lack of imagination is an obstacle to progress.

What are 10 examples of synonyms and antonyms?

BoisterousLively, ExuberantQuire, Restrained
IneptIncompetent, UnskilledCompetant
SootheEase, RelieveAggravate
LingerStay put, RemainVanish

What is the synonym for obstacle?

  • hitch
  • hindrance
  • bump
  • hardship
  • handicap
  • difficulty
  • hurdle
  • disincentive

How do you use obstacle in a sentence?

The obstacles posed by poverty and neglect were overcome by him. Before the restaurant can be opened, there are several hurdles to overcome. Her opponent is a bit hesitant due to lack of experience. A road obstacle forced her to maneuver carefully.

Which is an example of a physical obstacle?

There are some examples of physical obstacles, such as bloody nose, back pain, pregnant, sleepy, twitch in the eye, old, cold, stray hair, blind, deaf, drunk, recurring.

What is the noun of obstacle?

noun. noun. /bstkl/ 1obstacle (to something/to doing something) a situation, an event, etc. There are many difficulties to finding work, including a lack of qualifications.

Synonym for Obstacle — Definition, Antonyms, and Examples

Pam is an expert grammarian with years of experience teaching English, writing and ESL Grammar courses at the university level. She is enamored with all things language and fascinated with how we use words to shape our world.

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