V + やすい & V + にくい ( = V + yasui & V + nikui)

nikui yasui


= Kore ohashi de wa tabenikui yo!

= It is hard to eat this with chopsticks.

= Minasan Konnichiwa1
= Hello everyone!

I love プリン(=purin), custard pudding!   boucingheart! !purin!

But how am I supposed to eat this with chopsticks?


= Kore ohashi de wa tabenikui yo!

= It is hard to eat this with chopsticks.

● これ = kore = this

:rrrr: これは= korewa

(=wa = a subject marker)

I know many of you are struggling with  Japanese particles. But we often omit particles in conversation.

● お箸= ohashi

= はし = hashi = chopsticks  (adding ( =o ) makes it sound more polite.)

● では = dewa = with (particle)

(=de) is a particle to express method, mean = with, by , using ~

You can also just say

箸で( = hashi de) with chopsticks

We add は ( = wa) when we want to emphasize what comes before では ( = dewa)

● 食べにくい = tabenikui = hard to eat

We are going to learn this today. !JYANE!


Today’s focus grammar patterns :

!star! verb  + やすい ( = ~ yasui) = easy to do something

!star! verb  + にくい  ( = ~ nikui) = hard to do something

!heartsippai! How to form :

verb ます form

1)  delete ます( = masu)

2)  add やすい ( = yasui) or にくい ( = nikui)

わかる ( = wakaru) to understand

:rrrr: わかります ( = wakarimasu)

:rrrr: わかりやすい  ( = wakariyasui) = easy to understand, simple, clear

:rrrr: わかりにくい  ( = wakarinikui) = hard to understand, difficult, unclear

Ex. この教科書はわかりにくい

= Kono kyoukasho wa wakarinikui.

= This textbook is hard to understand.

Ex. 「よろしくお願いします。」という日本語の表現は英語に訳しにくいです。

= “Yoroshiku onegai shimasu” toiu nihongo no hyougen wa eigo ni yakushinikui desu.

= The Japanese expression “Yosorhiku onegai shimasu*” is hard to translate in English.

( Thank you for your help in advance./ I appreciate you for taking care of something or someone in advance.)

Ex. とても言いにくいんだけど別れてくれない? (Casual)

= Totemo iinikuin dakedo wakarete kurenai?

= It’s difficult to tell you but can you break up with me?

Note : んだけど ( = ndakedo) is a casual way to say  のですが ( = no desu ga)

The original form is 言いにくいのですが ( = iinikui no desu ga)

Ex. マギーはだまされやすい(passive form)

= Maggie wa damasareyasui.

= Maggie is gullible. (Maggie is easily deceived)

Ex. この扉の鍵は開けにくい

= Kono tobira no kagi wa akenikui.

= This door lock is hard to open.

Ex. この携帯は使いやすい

= Kono keitai wa tsukaiyasui.

= This cellphone is easy to use.

Ex. 地下鉄の中は、携帯の電波が届きにくい

= Chikatestu no naka wa keitai no denpa ga todokinikui.

= It is hard to get cellphone reception  in the subways.

:pika: Special note for beginners :

When you make a simple sentence,

!star! Subject  is やすい( = yasui) / にくい ( = nikui)  = Subject is easy to do /hard to do

I found out some of you tend to use を ( = wo) (or に ( = ni) in case of 4)  instead of は ( = wa). I was wondering why but it’s probably because you learned these patterns.

1) A使う ( = A wo tsukau) = to use A

2) B 見る  ( = B wo miru ) = to see (watch, look at) B

3) C着る ( = C wo kiru ) = to put on (wear) C

4) D乗る ( = C ni noru ) = to ride C

Yes, we have to use an object marker,  を ( = wo) (or に ( = ni) here because they are all objects.

However, when we make a sentence “something is easy/hard to do” , we have to use a subject marker, は ( = wa). (or ( = ga) when you show some contrast.)

1) A使いやすい/ 使いにくい

= A wa tsukaiyasui / tsukainikui

= A is easy to use / hard to use

2) Bやすい / 見にくい

= B wa miyasui / minikui

= B is easy to see / hard to see

3) Cやすい /  着にくい

= C wa kiyasui / kinikui

= C is easy to put on (comfortable to wear ) / hard to put on (uncomfortable to wear)

4) D乗りやすい/ 乗りにくい

= D wa noriyasui / norinikui

= D is easy to drive (ride)  / hard to drive (ride)

But of course, we may alternate the particle in more complicated sentences. Will show you more examples later.


:s: Adjective form :


* verb + やすい ( = ~ yasui) + noun

* verb + にくい  ( = ~ nikui) + noun

Ex. わかりやすい説明

= Wakari yasui setsumei.

= Easy-to-understand (simple, clear) explanation

Ex. 彼女は話しやすい

= Kanojo wa hanashiyasui.

= She is easy to talk to.

Ex. 答えにくい質問

= Kotaenikui shitsumon

= a difficult question to answer

Ex. 読みやすい

= Yomiyasui hon

= easy-to-read book

Ex. 履きやすい

= Hakiyasui kutsu

= comfortable shoes

Ex. 見つけにくい

= Mitsukenikui mise

= a store which is hard to find

Ex.  しわ(皺)になりにくいシャツ

= Shiwa ni narinikui shatsu

= wrinkle-resistant shirt

Adverb form :

やすい ( = yasui) →やすく( = yasuku)

にくい( = nikui)  →にくく ( =nikuku)

Ex. トンカツは食べやすく切っておきました。

= Tonkatsu wa tabeyasuku kitte okimashita.

= I sliced the pork cutlet into pieces to make it easier to eat.

Note : You can also say トンカツを ( = tonkatsu wo) using a direct object marker ( = wo) )

Ex. マギー先生、もっとわかりやすく教えて下さい。

= Maggie sensei, motto wakariyasuku oshiete kudasai .

= Maggie Sensei, please teach us more clearly.

Ex. 雪で道が滑りやすくなっているので気をつけて下さい。

= Yuki de michi ga suberiyasuku natte iru node ki wo tsukete kudasai.

= Be careful. The streets have become slippery due to the snow.

Ex. 彼が同じ部署に来てから働きにくくなった。

= Kare ga onaji busho ni kite kara hatarakinikuku natta.

= Since he started to work in the same division, it has become hard to work there.

maggie-senseiマギー先生より = Maggie sensei yori = From Maggie Sensei


= Watashi no ressun wa wakariyasui desu ka? Wakarinikui desu ka?

= Are my lessons easy to understand? Or hard to understand?

えっ? そんな質問は答えにくい

= Eh? Sonna shitsumon wa kotaenikui?

=What? It is hard to answer that kind of question?


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  1. Hey there!

    I’m wondering about using する verbs with にくい and やすい .


    Does this work to mean studying Japanese at home is hard?


    1. Hi Isaac,

      You use a masu-stem します→し+にくい・やすい

      I guess you can say 勉強しやすい・しにくい Under certain circumstances (room, environment ,etc) but you don’t say for example

  2. Hi Maggie! Thank you for this lesson.

    Can you please, explain me the difference between:

    やすい and 簡単

    にくい and 難しい

    1. Hi Eliza,
      The biggest difference is you always use やすい/にくい combining with other verb and
      you don’t use 簡単/難しい in a compound words.

      ~するのは/verb dictionary form + のが簡単です。= Doing something is easy.
      ~するのは/verb dictionary form + のが難しいです。= Doing something is difficult/hard.

      Also when you talk about the characteristic of things/people, you rarely use 簡単/難しい
      Easy to break = breakable
      壊れやすい (You don’t say 壊れるのが簡単)
      Hard to break = durable
      壊れにくい (You don’t say 壊れるのが難しい)

      Easy to talk to (Friendly personality)
      話しやすい (You don’t say 話すのが簡単)

  3. Hello,
    I’ve heard my Japanese teacher say ’この椅子は座りやすい’ how would you translate this into English without it sounding strange?

  4. hello maggie sensei..!
    i’d like to make a sentence. “Watashi wa kono kanji wo kakinikui desu”
    is it correct?

    1. @yaya

      Hello yaya!
      “Watashi wa kono kanji wo kakinikui desu”
      The basic pattern is A is ~ yasui/nikui = Something is easy/difficult to do something
      You put “watashi” as a subject so change the subject particle “(watashi) wa” to “(watashi) niwa” which means “for (me)” and put “kanji” as a subject using a particle “wa”
      I’ll show you
      = Kanji wa kakinikui desu.
      = Kanji is difficult to write

      + add “for me” 私には(=watashi niwa)

      = Watashi niwa kanji wa kakinikui desu.

      You can also say 私にとっては= Watashi ni tottewa for “for me”.

  5. Hello, my book lists “kaze wo hikiyasui” and I was wondering, if you say you use ga/wa with yasui/nikui (and makes all the sense to me since it becomes a some kind of adjective), is my book wrong using wo? (I sometimes spot fails so I wouldn’t be surprised) Or maybe they’re sometimes switched? Thank you

    1. @Lia

      Hello Lia,
      風邪をひく(kazw wo hiku) is an idiom. The original meaning of 引く=ひく= hiku is “to draw” so you need an object marker を
      (FYI We also say 風邪にかかる= Kaze ni kakaru : In this case かかる means “to be infected” so you need a particle for cause, に = ni= by)

      Back to your question, you don’t say 風邪がひきやすい but when you show the contrast you can say 風邪はひきやすい(=kaze wa hikiyasui)/風邪はひきにくい(=kaze wa hikinikui)

      Ex. 大きな病気にかかることはあるがなぜか風邪はひきにくい。
      = Ookina byouki ni kakaru koto wa aru ga naze ka kaze wa hikinikui.
      (Showing the contrast between serious disease and cold.)

      1. Haha yep, I see it’s an idiom, I like it, sounds really strange, to draw a cold or to pull a cold. Anyway I read more often “kodomo ga tabeyasui tabemono”, for example, to say that it’s food that a kid can easily eat so, I guess nikui/yasui is not as much an adjective and has a verb part. I’d have said “kodomo ni tabeyasui” but I understand the ga.
        thank you!!!

        1. @Lia

          Basically it is possible to use many different particles with V+やすい/にくい depending on the verb and context.
          noun が/は/を/に/も/でも, etc… + V+やすい/にくい

          子供が食べやすい食べ物= Kodomo ga tabeyasui tabemono
          子供が食べやすいように切る= Kodomo ga tabeyasui you ni kiru.
          このお菓子は子供に食べやすいように作られています。= Kono okashi wa kodomo ni tabeyasui you ni tsukurarete imasu.

        2. Hi Maggie sensei,

          In the sentence “Kaze wo hikinikui”, the subject is “I” right.
          If I dont want to bury the subject, how would I say?


          Thanks a lot Maggie sensei

  6. Hello Maggie Sensei,

    I have been your site’s reader for quite a time but it’s my first time leaving a comment here ^^
    I just have a small question. Can I use potential verb with ~yasui/nikui? For example, when I want to say something like “It’s easy to see snow in winter”, can I say “yuki ga mirareyasui”? (it does sound strange to be honest T_T).

    Thank you in advance ^^.

    1. @Jolie

      Hello Jolie, Thank you for your first comment!

      There isn’t a potential for of ~yasui/nikui but there is a passive form.
      So if you say
      見られやすい(=mirareyasui) , we automatically think it’s a passive form. “something is easy to be seen”

      Ex. 私は30歳ですが、若く見られやすい。=I am thirty years old but I look younger.

      Will show you other example with a passive form.

      *盗む=nusumu=to steal →盗まれやすい= nusumareyasui = easy to be stolen / 盗まれにくい(=nusumare nikui) hard to be stolen

      Ex. この自転車は盗まれやすい= Kono jitensha wa nusumare yasui = This bicycle is easy to be stolen.

      So if you want to say “It’s easy to see snow in winter”, you just say

      = Yuki wa fuyu ni mirareru koto ga ooi.

      But we usually say

      = Yuki wa fuyu ni furu koto ga ooi.

      1. Sensei, thank you so much ^^

        Through your explaining, I understand the meaning of passive form + yasui/nikui, but here come one more question. Even though “yuki ga mirareyasui” here literally means “Snow can easily be seen”, I guess it still can’t be used to express the likeliness of seeing snow in winter, right Sensei? (i’m a little bit confused here :roll: )

        And a little more, can I say “Yuki wa fuyu ni mirarerukoto ga yasashii”?

        Nice day Sensei ^w^

        1. @Jolie

          Still I would say 雪は冬に見られやすい doesn’t sound natural.
          And you don’t say 雪は冬にみられることがやさしい (“Yuki wa fuyu ni mirarerukoto ga yasashii)

  7. I love reading your lessons so much!! Thank you! I used to think I was learning Nihongo like a turtle but now I am learning many useful and practical lessons in Nihongo. Arigatou, Maggie Sensei~ > u<

    1. @Isay

      Hello Isay! このサイトに来てくれてありがとう!Thank you for visiting this site.
      Learning Japanese like a turtle is good as long as you enjoy learning it. :)
      Hope you come back here to learn more!

      1. Wow, you replied so fast! Your site has become one of my relaxation activities after a long day at work. I love it! And yes, I enjoy learning Japanese, each new word I learn is so colorful, especially when I learn more about the kanji that comprise them. But words are weak without regular usage.. your site shows precisely how to do so correctly, so again, thank you!! <3

  8. なんてすばらしいレッスンなんでしょう!(*⌒∇⌒*)

    マギー先生, ただいま! お久しぶりですね? 私は悪い生徒でごめんなさい。o(╥﹏╥)o 最近、毎日仕事で忙しいですから。 でも, 日本語を上達することを一所懸命に頑張ります!


    1. @Remi Ayumi Lee

  9. マギー先生、教えたことは本当に分かりやすいです。特に「は」と「を」の使い方。それを知るのが便利だと思います。ありがとうございます。

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