reef rash

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reef rash (countable and uncountable, plural reef rashes)

  1. (surfing) Scraping injury caused by falling on or being dragged over a reef. (Note this is an actual physical injury, not an inflammation like a normal rash.)
    1999: I decided to show the lifeguards my reef rash. "It's just a scratch!" one of them chimed. — Neal Miyake [1]

Usage notes[edit]

It is common to describe even serious injuries caused by a reef as "reef rash", as a form of humorous or macho understatement.