“Gung Ho” Meaning, and How Do You Use this Idiom in Conversations?

You may have heard the phrase ‘gung ho’ used in English conversation, but what does this saying mean? Where did this term come from and how can we use it in our conversations? We are going to answer all of these questions as we look into the meaning behind this term.

Gung Ho

“Gung Ho” Meaning

The meaning of the phrase ‘gung ho’ is to be enthusiastic or overly excitable about something.

Origin of this term

The term ‘gung ho’ originally comes from the Chinese language, from the term ‘gong he’ which means to work together. The idiom was picked up by sailors and was then used to encourage the seamen onboard military ships.

“Gung Ho” Examples

Examples in Statements

A statement made to show how enthusiastic someone is about something.

  • ‘Ian is going into his driving test very gung ho.’

A statement to show personal eagerness.

  • ‘I am feeling very gung ho about this new job.’

Other examples:

  • Oh yeah! George is gung ho about Annie now.
  • Why is everyone so gung ho to connect those two conditions?
  • Mr. Li was gung ho about his new job.

Conversation Examples

Here are some examples of how you might use the term ‘gung ho’ in a conversation.

The first conversation is between two friends discussing someone’s attitude to their new career.

  • Person 1: “Michael is really enjoying his new job, isn’t he.”
  • Person 2: “Yes, he has gone into it with a real gung ho attitude.”

This conversation is between two acquaintances talking about travel.

  • Person 1: “Aren’t you going traveling soon?”
  • Person 2: “Yes, I am going to travel around South America for six months.”
  • Person 1: “Wow, that sounds exciting, how are you feeling about it?”
  • Person 2: “I’m feeling very gung ho, I can’t wait to get going.”

Other Ways to Say the Phrase

There is more than one way to express the meaning of the term ‘gung ho,’ here are some examples of other ways you can say it.

  • Zealous
  • Eager
  • Overly keen
  • Excited
  • Enthusiastic

“Gung Ho” Meaning | Image

Gung Ho