Family Day Sale
Save 15% on all our monthly plans »

Forming the present progressive/continuous in Spanish with estar + present participle (El Presente Progresivo)

The Spanish present tense has a continuous (progressive) form to express an action which is ongoing in the present. It works in a similar way to the English present continuous:

Yo estoy hablando con mi madre.I am talking with my mother.

Tú estás corriendo la maratón.You are running the marathon.

Ella está aprendiendo a cocinar.She is learning how to cook.

Nosotros estamos cantando.We are singing.

Vosotros estáis mirando la puesta de sol.You are looking at the sunset.

Ellos están viviendo en Caracas.They are living in Caracas.

Ustedes están admirando el paisaje.You are admiring the view.

Learn about El Presente Progresivo in Spanish

 To express a continuing or ongoing present action in Spanish you will follow this pattern for most regular verbs:

First of all you will need estar in El Presente:

yo  estoy
estás
él / ella / Ud. está
nosotros/nosotras 
estamos
vosotros /vosotras 
estáis
ellos / ellas / Uds.  están

And then: 

Estar in El Presente +

-ando (-AR verbs)

 

-iendo (-ER and -IR verbs)

Here's a reminder on how to form the present participle/gerund in Spanish. To form the present participle/gerund of the main action verb (which finishes in -ando/-iendo = the equivalent of the -ing form in English) you need to drop the ending of the infinitive and add the suffix -ando/-iendo):

hablar → habl- = hablando

correr → corr- = corriendo

For regular gerunds/present participles in Spanish see:

For irregular gerunds/present participles in Spanish see:

See also Forming the progressive imperfect with estar + present participle (El Imperfecto progresivo/contínuo)).

Want to make sure your Spanish sounds confident? We’ll map your knowledge and give you free lessons to focus on your gaps and mistakes. Start your Braimap today »

Learn more about these related Spanish grammar topics

Examples and resources

Nosotros estamos cantando.We are singing.
Vosotros estáis mirando la puesta de sol.You are looking at the sunset.
Ustedes están admirando el paisaje.You are admiring the view.
Ellos están viviendo en Caracas.They are living in Caracas.
Tú estás corriendo la maratón.You are running the marathon.
Ella está aprendiendo a cocinar.She is learning how to cook.
Yo estoy hablando con mi madre.I am talking with my mother.
Thinking...