1. Not skillful or graceful; clumsy.
George is heavy-handed and seldom catches the ball.
My sister plays the piano badly; she is too heavy-handed.
Tim told a heavy-handed joke about the principal's baldness that embarrassed everyone.
2. Likely to hit or punish hard; harsh or cruel in making (someone) obey.
Years ago many fathers were heavy-handed bosses in their homes.
Many American colonists believed that the English tax collectors were too heavy-handed.
3. See: HAM-HANDED.