- to make someone do what you want by making it difficult for them to refuse
- to persuade someone to do what they don't want
- to pressurize someone
- to coerce, force or cajole someone
- to strongly encourage someone to do what they don't want to do
- I did not want to attend the concert, but he twisted my arm into it.
- They had to twist his arm a bit, but they managed to get him to join the team.
- We had to twist his arm to get the information out of him.
- I've twisted his arm a bit and he will get you the passes to the event.
- Do you intend to cooperate or should we twist your arm?
- If he doesn't agree, you have to twist his arm till you get him to agree.
- The witness was reluctant to cooperate at first, but when the police twisted his arm, he came out with the details.
- If you find him difficult, just twist his arm a bit and he'll comply.
This phrase originated in the mid 1900s and refers to using physical force (by twisting someone's arm) to get something done.
Idiom of the Day