1 [U] capacity or power to do sth physical or mental 做体力, 脑力或机械工作的能力或力量
*a machine with the ability to cope with large loads 能处理大负荷量的机器
* He has the ability to do the work. 他有做这项工作的能力.
2 (a) [U] cleverness; intelligence 智慧; 才智
*a woman of great ability 很有才能的女子.
(b) [U, C] talent 天资; 天分
*have a great musical ability 很有音乐天才
* We found him work more suited to his abilities. 我们给他找到了更适合他的能力的工作.
3 (idm 习语) to the best of one's ability => best3.
[Date: 1400-1500; Language: Old French;Origin: habilité, from Latin habilitas, from habilis; ABLE]
the state of being able to do something
ability to do sth
the ability to walk
The health center serves all patients, regardless of their ability to pay.
I don't have the ability to say 'no'.
[U and C]
someone's level of skill at doing something
athletic/musical/artistic etc ability
The test measures verbal and mathematical ability.
It takes hard work and natural ability to make it as a professional athlete.
There are musicians of all abilities in the orchestra.
of great/exceptional etc ability
He's a writer of remarkable ability.
of high/low/average ability
students of average ability
mixed ability classes (=classes that include students who are at different levels)
to the best of your ability
as well as you can
He completed the job to the best of his ability.
1. But until recently, the academic edge gained by participating in sports was thought to come from the increased self-confidence, the better mood, and the ability to concentrate that comes from burning off steam in exercise. 但直到最近，人们还认为因参加体育运动而获得的学业优势来自于增强的自信、更好的心态，以及由运动时消耗体力所带来的集中注意力的能力。
2. But as a woman's power is still strongly perceived to be tied up with the ability to bear children, ageing demonstrates to the world her decline, her uselessness for her primary function. 但由于女性的本领仍在很大程度上被看作与生育能力密切相关，年龄增长向世人显示的是她的衰老，就她的首要作用而言她已无用了。
3. It cannot judge distances, depths. Later, for its personal safety and practical needs, it has to develop (partly by means of touch) the ability to judge roughly three-dimensonal distances. 不会判断距离和深度。慢慢地，由于自身安全和实际需要，儿童必须发展（部分通过触觉）粗略判断三维空间距离的能力。
4. Wrinkles are symbolic of the decline of her ability to reproduce. 皱纹就象征着她生育能力的衰退。
5. Women's survival, both physical and psychological, has been linked to their ability to please men. 女人的生存，不论是生理的还是心理的，都与其取悦于男人的能力有关。
6. What researchers have been trying to understand is how they work together; how one's ability to handle stress, for instance, affects the ability to concentrate and put intelligence to use. 研究人员想要弄清的是两者是如何共同起作用的；举例说，一个人应付压力的能力是如何影响他集中精力，运用智力的能力的。
7. The students have different degrees of ability. 这些学生的能力大小各不同.
8. This ability was first noticed by her father. 是她父亲首先发现她这一功能的。
9. This kind of variability not only loosens the parents' ability to set limits, it also sours the parent-child relationship to some degree, robbing parents and their children of some of the happiness and mutual respect that is present in healthy famili 这样的反复无定不但削弱了父母管教孩子的能力，同时也在某种程度上使父母与子女之间的关系变味 -- 使家长和子女失去存在于健康家庭里的某些幸福和相互尊重。
10. This was because ability to bear children was a very important requirement for women in this culture, 这是因为在这个文化里，妇女的生育能力是一个十分重要、必不可少的条件。