Sunday, 16 November 2014

Sandboarding or Sand boarding? One word or two?

Buenos Aires my readers!

I know Buenos Aires means 'good airs' and Buenos Dias means 'good day', I changed the title of the introduction for a bit of a laugh. Anyway thank you for deciding to take the time out of your day, afternoon, morning or whenever you're reading this to view my weekly blog. As I did last week I published the results of the weekly poll and this is how you lot voted:

It has been confirmed, I will put Zig Zags onto my sandboard along with fluorescent yellow stripes (which I haven't yet put on but I will as part of a future blog post). You may be slightly stumped on why I said Buenos Aires on this post introduction, more importantly the use of Spanish words. I am blogging today about whether sand boarding or sandboarding is the correct word for the sport I blog about. A word of warning that I may be a sandboarding writer and enthusiast but in no way does this mean that I graduated at Cambridge University or I got any major English Language or Journalism qualifications; this might make me seem mediocre but everyone starts somewhere, right? Moving on.

The word itself

The word itself is fairly new for some reason because the popularity of the sport only took off quite recently, the Oxford English Dictionary first noted 'sandboarding' as a noun in 1987 and oddly enough 'snowboarding' was first noted in 1984, so you can see a close resemblence of sports and words even though they are 2 completely different things. According to Google's Ngram viewer where the frequency of words have been used in the past; 'sand boarding' has been used since 1858 but have a completely definition to the sport. In 1933, 'sandboarding' was first used but did refer to the actual definition of the sport where you go down a sand dune.

Compound Words

Most spell checkers that don't rely on a dictionary will put a red line underneath 'sandboarding' because it could be considered a compound word. A compound word is where 2 words are put together to make a new word; For example, 'anybody' is a compound word because 'any' and 'body' are merged together to make a bigger word. Back on the subject of spell checkers, the one I use to compose this blog highlights 'sandboarding' as an incorrect spelling, unless I put it in speech marks or in-between apostrophes.


A very good tool that I use is Google's Ngram viewer and 'sandboarding' is undisputedly the more used word rather than the English language variant of 'sand boarding'. What sparked my mind is that from the years 2001 to 2004; 'sand-boarding' spelt with a hyphen which is commonly used in English speaking countries of Africa was used more than the lesser but still popular alternative of 'sand boarding'.
Sandboarding soaring to the top! Source: Ngram viewer


This next bit was rather shocking, whilst sandboarding (I won't put the word in speech marks anymore as I've discovered that the majority agree online that this is the correct spelling) is the name of the sport. In Peru and Latin American regions that refer to sandboarding, it is roughly translated as 'sand surfing' (although 'sand surfing' is also a nickname too). 'sand surfing' was first used in 1958 and was the most popular term to refer to the sport till 1997 when sandboarding was more used. In 2002, 'sand-boarding' and 'sand boarding' passed 'sand surfing' as a more commonly used word.

'sand surfing' used since the 50s, Source: Ngram viewer





Final thoughts

From my experience, I've always felt sandboarding was the correct term hyphen or not, I have never used a space in-between 'sand' and 'boarding' to describe the sport (unless I wanted to fill the word limit on an essay quicker). I conducted the fair amount of research to discover the truth but I want to know: "Which term do you use most?" and the options will be: Sandboarding, Sand boarding and Sand-boarding. The poll will close on the 22nd of November at 6pm (Greenwich Mean Time) and I look forward to publishing the result. Leave a comment as always as everyone's welcome whatever language you speak, I will do my upmost best to converse with you! Next week this blog will not focus on a theme but I will advise and reveal my top 10 countries for sandboarding; It won't be an official list but my own advisory list. Take care and have a great week.

No comments:

Post a Comment