spring·​board | \ ˈspriŋ-ˌbȯrd How to pronounce springboard (audio) \
plural springboards

Definition of springboard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a flexible board usually secured at one end and used for gymnastic stunts or diving
2 : something that helps launch an activity, enterprise, etc. … hopes motherhood will be the springboard that relaunches her stagnant acting career.— Roy S. Johnson … Ueberroth is denying claims that he will use the Games as a springboard to high political office.— Ray Kennedy


springboarded; springboarding; springboards

Definition of springboard (Entry 2 of 2)

1 intransitive : to launch upward from or as if from a springboard … cloud-scraping 60-meter punts pulling a half-dozen bodies skyward, each trying to springboard off the small of the other's back …— Gary Smith
2 transitive + intransitive : to start or help start something (such as an activity or enterprise) The company has spent heavily to establish a brand name and reputation from scratch, with no brick-and-mortar stores to springboard its efforts.— Chris O'Malley Fortunately I got the approval, and that springboarded the work.— Andrew Grant

Examples of springboard in a Sentence

Noun The news served as a springboard for a class discussion.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Jeff Johnson believes the Skeeters, who have had 25 players sign with major league organizations since 2018, could provide the best springboard. Los Angeles Times, "Minor Disruption: Robbie Peto signed with Dodgers as undrafted free agent. Now what?," 2 July 2020 Sporting Goods has volleyball sets, basketball hoops and other accessories to keep kids bouncing inside the netted springboard and landing area. oregonlive, "Create summer camp at home, with or without a waterslide," 27 June 2020 The order takes aim at a number of work permits, including the H1B visa that allows skilled workers such as computer programmers to work in the U.S. for a renewable three-year stint that can be a springboard to permanent residency. Phil Wahba, Fortune, "Tesla, Google, and Chamber of Commerce CEOs among business leaders slamming Trump’s visa ban," 23 June 2020 The Rosenbergs were executed for espionage on June 19, 1953, cementing Cohn's image as an anti-Communist crusader, and providing the springboard to his work as chief counsel to Senator Joseph McCarthy. Brian Lowry, CNN, "'Bully. Coward. Victim. The Story of Roy Cohn' documentary benefits from its personal touch," 18 June 2020 Some employees have even spoken up, using the petition as a springboard to launch discussion about whether the July 17 reopening date is unwise. Morgan Hines, USA TODAY, "More than 21,000 have signed petition to keep Disneyland closed amid coronavirus pandemic," 13 June 2020 The solidarity of today’s protesters transcends the bloody racial divides of the past and may be a springboard for more sweeping reforms. National Geographic, "2020 is not 1968: To understand today’s protests, you must look further back," 11 June 2020 Jokowi himself used the job as a springboard to the presidency. The Economist, "Viral marketing Indonesia’s president has a new rival," 4 June 2020 Under normal circumstances, McCants would have used his stellar 1989 season as a springboard to his senior year. Creg Stephenson | Cstephenson@al.com, al, "Keith McCants’ road from No. 1 NFL draft prospect to cautionary tale," 22 Apr. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'springboard.' 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 springboard


circa 1780, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1904, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for springboard

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The first known use of springboard was circa 1780

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Last Updated

9 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Springboard.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/springboard. Accessed 11 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for springboard


How to pronounce springboard (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of springboard

: a strong, flexible board that is used for jumping very high in gymnastics or diving
: something that helps you start an activity or process


spring·​board | \ ˈspriŋ-ˌbȯrd How to pronounce springboard (audio) \

Kids Definition of springboard

: a flexible board usually fastened at one end and used for jumping high in the air in gymnastics or diving

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More from Merriam-Webster on springboard

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with springboard

Spanish Central: Translation of springboard

Nglish: Translation of springboard for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of springboard for Arabic Speakers

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