“They’re on fire,” this one’s in the bag,” and “we played our hearts out” are a few commonly used phrases in the sports world. These terms or phrases can also be known as a jargon, which are specific words or lingo used by a particular group. According to Leslie Savan in her article “Black Talk and Pop Culture” she states that today’s language is heavily influenced by what she calls black talk. Words like “yo,” “bro,” and “player” have found their way into today’s culture. Similarly many major sports use jargon but three familiar ones are volleyball, baseball, and basketball.
Bump, set, and spike are the three main components of volleyball. These three words are everyday words for lovers of this sport, but for others, volleyball lingo may be a bit confusing. To bump the ball simply means to pass the ball with one’s feet shoulder width apart, knees bent, and forearms together straight forward. Setting is always the second pass and is an overhead pass by just using one’s fingertips. It is important for the setter to use both hands; otherwise, it is an illegal pass. Although bumping and setting are important, spiking is by far the most exciting part of the sport. This is when a front row player jumps up and with an open hand slams the ball. The intention of a spike is to return the ball to the opponent’s side with such force that it is difficult to return. Although these words comprise the main terminology, there are also many other sayings used in this sport. “Kill the ball” is often used when referring to a good spike. This phrase could easily be taken the wrong way; someone may think it physically means to murder the ball, but that is not the case. A “free ball” is another example that is said a lot. This term is basically a gift given to the opponent.
Another sport that has a high usage of jargon is baseball. This sport has been around since the 1800’s, yet many people are still unfamiliar with a few of the terms. For...
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