shin·​ny | \ ˈshi-nē How to pronounce shinny (audio) \
variants: or less commonly shinney

Definition of shinny

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a variation of hockey played by children with a curved stick and a ball or block of wood also : the stick used
2 : an informal game of ice hockey played usually outdoors


shinnied; shinnying

Definition of shinny (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to move oneself up or down something vertical (such as a pole) especially by alternately hugging it with the arms or hands and the legs

Examples of shinny in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Julian Ganton, now 31, recounted summers spent sleeping in tents high in the trees and winters spent playing shinny — that’s Canadian for pickup hockey — right outside his house. Catherine Porter, New York Times, "Shivering? That’s for City Folk. For Islanders, Ice Time Is Play Time.," 16 Jan. 2018 The Predators were the last team to qualify for this year’s shinny tournament and the first to get to the final. Steve Rosenbloom,, "Stanley Cup playoffs’ breathless drama > NBA postseason’s predictable excellence," 26 May 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

There are now escape chutes (basically, giant collapsible fabric tubes for shinnying down) and small parachutes. Alex Williams, New York Times, "How to Survive the Apocalypse," 23 Sep. 2017 Daedalus ignored her and started shinnying up the pole. John Kelly, Washington Post, "‘The Taking of Bird Feeder 123’: The new heist film starring an all-squirrel cast," 20 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'shinny.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of shinny


1672, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1851, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for shinny


perhaps from shin entry 1


alteration of shin entry 2

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Statistics for shinny

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Time Traveler for shinny

The first known use of shinny was in 1672

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More Definitions for shinny



English Language Learners Definition of shinny

US : to climb up or down something (such as a pole) by grasping it with your arms and legs


shin·​ny | \ ˈshi-nē How to pronounce shinny (audio) \
shinnied; shinnying

Kids Definition of shinny

: to climb (as a pole) by grasping with arms and legs and moving upward by repeated jerks

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More from Merriam-Webster on shinny

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with shinny

Spanish Central: Translation of shinny Encyclopedia article about shinny

Comments on shinny

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