I'm having some problems differentiating between meanings of sentences. For example the sentence


can mean, very energetic boy or it can mean very healthy kid.

These two are very different in meaning, how can you tell the difference ?

  • 8
    Is は possibly a typo for な?
    – Earthliŋ
    Aug 28, 2016 at 20:30
  • 2
    The only way to tell is by context. But in this case, if you're just making a general statement, it would make more sense to translate it as "energetic" than "healthy."
    – Kurausukun
    Aug 28, 2016 at 21:27
  • 男の赤ちゃんが生まれたとき、助産婦さんが「とても元気な男の子ですよ」ってよく言いますよね
    – chocolate
    Sep 22, 2016 at 13:45

1 Answer 1


Other than in very specific situations, 元気 is usually used to describe 'energetic' or 'lively. So without context, it would be energetic instead of healthy. (Though you sort of have to be healthy in order to be energetic right? )

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