stren·​u·​ous | \ ˈstren-yə-wəs How to pronounce strenuous (audio) \

Definition of strenuous

1a : vigorously active : energetic
b : fervent, zealous his most strenuous supporters
2 : marked by or calling for energy or stamina : arduous a strenuous hike

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from strenuous

strenuosity \ ˌstren-​yə-​ˈwä-​sə-​tē How to pronounce strenuosity (audio) \ noun
strenuously \ ˈstren-​yə-​wəs-​lē How to pronounce strenuously (audio) \ adverb
strenuousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for strenuous

vigorous, energetic, strenuous, lusty, nervous mean having or showing great vitality and force. vigorous further implies showing no signs of depletion or diminishing of freshness or robustness. as vigorous as a youth half his age energetic suggests a capacity for intense activity. an energetic campaigner strenuous suggests a preference for coping with the arduous or the challenging. the strenuous life on an oil rig lusty implies exuberant energy and capacity for enjoyment. a lusty appetite for life nervous suggests especially the forcibleness and sustained effectiveness resulting from mental vigor. full of nervous energy

Examples of strenuous in a Sentence

Avoid all strenuous exercise until the sprain heals. Today has been a very strenuous day. The proposal has faced strenuous opposition.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web Susan Sarandon is Lily, whose shuffling, strenuous effort just to get up and down the stairs reveal the way that ALS is ravaging her body. Brian Lowry, CNN, "'Blackbird' showcases Susan Sarandon as a family copes with a fatal illness," 15 Sep. 2020 Speaking at a virtual panel with doctors from Harvard Medical School, per NBC News, Fauci said that the fight against the coronavirus pandemic will only get more strenuous as the year reaches its close. Jessica Flores, USA TODAY, "Coronavirus updates: Adults with COVID-19 twice as likely to eat out; Florida bars to open at 50% capacity; US reaches 191K deaths," 11 Sep. 2020 If the room doesn’t have a ceiling fan or central air-conditioning, a window AC unit and standing fan can make strenuous workouts more comfortable. Jamie Gold, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Can home design help you be healthier? San Diegan’s new book lays out how, room by room," 5 Sep. 2020 But the strenuous effort to redeem Bush-era Republicans will ultimately leave ordinary Americans out in the cold, as well. Eoin Higgins, The New Republic, "The Bush Rehabilitation Trap," 1 Sep. 2020 For hikers who want a much less strenuous trek than Black Swift Falls, there is a relatively secluded coastal trail at Estero Bluffs State Park just north of Cayucos. Dan Fellner, The Arizona Republic, "Driving California Highway 1: The best views, hikes and things to do near San Luis Obispo," 27 Aug. 2020 Exemptions apply to anyone who is eating, drinking, participating in strenuous physical activity or has a medical condition that prevents them from wearing a mask. Justin L. Mack, The Indianapolis Star, "Indiana's mask mandate extended for another 30 days," 26 Aug. 2020 At that point, sensitive groups should avoid strenuous outdoor activities, and everyone else should reduce them. Kellie Hwang,, "When is it OK to go outside if it’s smoky in the Bay Area? How to assess your air quality risk," 26 Aug. 2020 If possible, avoid being outside or doing strenuous activity, like running or cycling, when there is an air quality warning for your area. Luke Montrose, The Conversation, "What’s in that wildfire smoke, and why is it so bad for your lungs?," 20 Aug. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of strenuous

1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for strenuous

Latin strenuus

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about strenuous

Time Traveler for strenuous

Time Traveler

The first known use of strenuous was in 1599

See more words from the same year

Statistics for strenuous

Last Updated

23 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Strenuous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Sep. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for strenuous


How to pronounce strenuous (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of strenuous

: requiring or showing great energy and effort


stren·​u·​ous | \ ˈstren-yə-wəs How to pronounce strenuous (audio) \

Kids Definition of strenuous

1 : showing or requiring much energy and effort a strenuous climb
2 : very active : energetic He leads a strenuous life.

Other Words from strenuous

strenuously adverb

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on strenuous

What made you want to look up strenuous? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!