HSK 5 Words: 缩短 (suō duǎn) VS 减轻 (jiǎn qīng)

Monday, April 15, 2024

In the rich tapestry of Chinese vocabulary, words often carry multiple layers of meaning, nuances that can be challenging to capture in translation. Among these, the verbs 缩短 (suō duǎn) and 减轻  (jiǎn qīng) stand out as prime examples of terms that, while seemingly straightforward, hold subtle differences in their applications and implications. Understanding these differences is crucial for accurate communication in both spoken and written Chinese.

缩短 (suō duǎn) primarily refers to the act of reducing the length, duration, or distance of something. It is often used to describe the process of making something shorter or faster.


  1. The schedule has been shortened by two hours.
    rì chéng bèi suō duǎn le liǎng gè xiǎo shí。
  2. We need to shorten the distance between the two points.
    wǒ men xū yào suō duǎn liǎng diǎn zhī jiān de jù lí。
  3. The project was delayed, but we managed to shorten the delay.
    xiàng mù yán qī le, dàn wǒ men guǎn lǐ le suō duǎn yán qī de shí jiān。

On the other hand, 减轻 (jiǎn qīng) is used to describe the reduction of weight, burden, or intensity. It often implies a lessening of pressure or difficulty.


  1. The new technology has greatly reduced the workload, thus lightening the burden on employees.
    xīn jì shù dà dà jiǎn qīng le gōng zuò liàng, cóng ér qīng miǎn le yuán gōng de fù dān。
  2. The pain in my back has gradually eased off.
    wǒ bèi shàng de téng tòng zhú jiàn jiǎn qīng le。
  3. The doctor prescribed medication to help reduce the severity of the headache.
    yī shēng kāi le yào lái bāng zhù jiǎn qīng tóu téng de yán zhòng chéng dù。

In summary, 缩短 (suō duǎn) and 减轻 (jiǎn qīng) are two distinct words in Chinese. 缩短(suō duǎn) is used to refer to the reduction of length, duration, or distance, while 减轻(jiǎn qīng) focuses on the lessening of weight, burden, or intensity. Understanding the specific meanings of these words and their appropriate usage can enhance your Chinese language proficiency and communication skills.

Quiz: Please decide whether to use 缩短 (suō duǎn) or 减轻 (jiǎn qīng) in the following sentences.

  1. 为了______负担,他决定放弃一些不必要的任务。
    wèi le ______ fù dān, tā jué dìng fàng qì yī xiē bù bì yào de rèn wù。
  2. 由于新的交通规定,上下班通勤时间被______了。
    yóu yú xīn de jiāo tōng guī dìng, shàng xià bān tōng qín shí jiān bèi ______ le。
  3. 他一直在寻找方法来______学习新语言所需的时间。
    tā yì zhí zài xún zhǎo fāng fǎ lái ______ xué xí xīn yǔ yán suǒ xū de shí jiān。


  1. 减轻 (jiǎn qīng)
  2. 缩短 (suō duǎn)
  3. 缩短 (suō duǎn)

Sign up for a free trial now!

FAQ / Tips

No, the tuition fees you have paid cover all costs.There are no additional fees or hidden charges. We strive to be transparent and upfront with our pricing, ensuring that our clients receive the best value for their investment.
Our students come from a wide range of ages, from 3 years old to over 80 years old. Our courses are tailored to each student's age and proficiency level to ensure they can receive maximum benefit and progress. Whether you want to learn Chinese as a second language or improve your existing Chinese skills, we can provide you with courses and resources that are suitable for you
We offer highly flexible class schedules that cater to your needs, with lessons available from 7am to 10pm Beijing time, seven days a week.This allows you to conveniently take lessons at any time and from any location that suits your schedule.
We offer a referral program that rewards both you and your friend with free classes.To participate, simply refer a friend to our program and once they successfully enroll, both you and your friend will receive free classes.We appreciate your support and look forward to helping you and your friend achieve your language learning goals.
Our teaching methodology is centered around our students and their individual learning objectives.We provide personalized learning plans, innovative and flexible teaching materials and methods, and strive to make learning Chinese a joyful and enjoyable experience.Our approach is designed to engage students and foster a deep understanding of the Chinese language, culture, and customs. We believe that learning should be fun and meaningful, and we work hard to ensure that every student enjoys their Chinese language learning journey with us.
Our Chinese learning method is focused on personalized and interactive one-on-one lessons with a professional teacher. The lessons are conducted live through our online teaching platform, which allows you to see and talk to the teacher. You can schedule the lessons at a time that suits you, and the teacher will tailor the lesson content to your specific needs and goals. During the lesson, you can ask questions and receive feedback from the teacher to ensure you understand and master the knowledge and skills being taught. We also have a student service team and academic coordinator team to assist you with your learning and provide any additional support you may need.Overall, our method is designed to be flexible, personalized, and interactive to help you achieve your language learning goals.