able-bod·​ied ˌā-bəl-ˈbä-dēd How to pronounce able-bodied (audio)
: having a sound strong body

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The House passed a bill on April 26 that would require able-bodied adults without children to work, train or volunteer at least part time as a condition of receiving taxpayer support. Nick Stehle,, 12 May 2023 The work requirements say able-bodied adults ages 19 to 55 who don’t have children or other dependents would be required to work, train for a job or perform community service to stay on Medicaid. Amanda Seitz, Fortune Well, 30 Apr. 2023 Part of parents’ disconnect, Cam thinks, might be because able-bodied parents aren’t living the experience of a disabled or chronically ill person, but witnessing it. Fortesa Latifi, Washington Post, 11 May 2023 For the entire season — all his life, really — Escovar had been swimming against able-bodied athletes. Luca Evans, Los Angeles Times, 4 May 2023 In what should have been a routine enlistment required for all able-bodied men, unforeseen events such as the departure of a BIGBANG member and the COVID-19 pandemic canceling his band’s comeback performance for Coachella 2020 complicated a simple musical return. Jeff Benjamin, Billboard, 26 Apr. 2023 In addition, the bill would apply work requirements to able-bodied adults without dependents in Medicaid, the federal-state program that provides health insurance coverage for low-income Americans. Kevin Freking,, 26 Apr. 2023 In the 1930s millions of able-bodied Americans were thrown out of work and onto breadlines through no fault of their own. Naomi Oreskes, Scientific American, 25 Apr. 2023 The bills were introduced the day after the April 4 spring election during which Wisconsinites overwhelmingly voted in favor of a non-binding referendum that said unemployed, able-bodied adults should be required to search for work while receiving benefits. Molly Beck, Journal Sentinel, 25 Apr. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'able-bodied.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1600, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of able-bodied was in 1600

Dictionary Entries Near able-bodied

Cite this Entry

“Able-bodied.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


: having a healthy strong body : physically fit

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