Electromechanical coupling mechanisms in piezoelectric bending actuators are discussed in this paper based on the constitutive equations of cantilever bimorph and unimorph actuators. Three actuator characteristic parameters, (e.g., electromechanical coupling coefficient, maximum energy transmission coefficient, and maximum mechanical output energy) are discussed for cantilever bimorph and unimorph actuators. In the case of the bimorph actuator, if the effect of the bonding layer is negligible, these parameters are directly related to the transverse coupling factor lest. In the case of the unimorph actuator, these parameters also depend on the Young's modulus and the thickness of the elastic layer. Maximum values for these parameters can be obtained by choosing proper thickness ratio and Young's modulus ratio of elastic and piezoelectric layers. Calculation results on four unimorph actuators indicate that the use of stiffer elastic material is preferred to increase electromechanical coupling and output mechanical energy in unimorph actuators.