Tag: sports

The language of skateboarding

The language of skateboarding

Skateboarding began in California in the 1940s, invented by surfers looking for excitement when the waves were too flat to surf; the earliest skateboards were devised by adding roller skate wheels to wooden boxes. Over the following decades the boards became more sophisticated, as did the variety of manoeuvres that skaters attempted to carry out. […]

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football terminology quiz

How well do you know football terminology?

Are you man of the match, or merely watching from the sidelines? Click through those eight questions to find out how well you know the language of the beautiful game.

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football team names

The origins of British football team names

Where do British football (or soccer) clubs get their names? The answer may seem straightforward enough, since most clubs are named after the city in which they play: Manchester City, Southampton, Liverpool. But there are exceptions, such as Arsenal, named after the Royal Arsenal in Woolwich, whose workers formed the club in 1886. The Royal […]

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The origins of four NBA teams: the Knicks, the Mavericks, the Jazz, and the Raptors.

4 weird origins of NBA team names

Some of the team names in the National Basketball League (NBA) are fairly straightforward about their origins. It doesn’t take a team historian, for instance, to explain why the team in Phoenix – a city known for its hot desert climate – is called the Suns, or why the team in Orlando – famously the […]

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Video: what is the origin of the word ‘soccer’?

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There are many boxing idioms in the English language.

12 boxing idioms in English

Although the sport still enjoys a relatively large following today, the huge popularity that boxing had over a century ago is obvious when you look at the impact that the sport has had on the English language. In fact, there are plenty of common boxing terms and situations that you use in a figurative sense […]

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marathon running

The language of long-distance running

I imagine it’s much the same when you join a cult. At first, you fool yourself into thinking you won’t be sucked in. You look down on all those ‘fanatics’ who have let it get the better of them, adamant that it’s something you only dabble in occasionally. Yet over time you start to change. […]

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cricket

Playing with a straight bat: the language of cricket

With its long history and central place in English sporting culture, it is hardly surprising that cricketing idioms have been widely adopted into colloquial speech. The traditional association of cricket with fair play and good sportsmanship has given rise to expressions such as play with a straight bat, meaning to behave honestly and decently, and […]

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