Spanish Present Progressive Forms
The Spanish present progressive tense (el presente progresivo), also called the present continuous tense (el presente continuo), is used to talk about something that is happening now.
How to Form the Present Progressive
The present progressive is generally formed using the verb estar , plus a present participle.
Present Progressive Formula
estar + present participle
Regular present participles are formed as follows:
- Present participle of -ar verbs = verb stem + -ando (Example: hablando)
- Present participle of -er and -ir verbs = verb stem + -iendo (Examples: escribiendo, comiendo)
Learn more about regular and irregular present participles here!
Check out these examples of the present progressive.
The present progressive is formed with the present tense of the verb estar (to be).
Here's an example showing the present progressive of the verb hablar (to speak). Only the estar part of the present progressive changes to match the subject. The present participle (hablando) does not change.
Present Progressive and Present Simple
In both English and Spanish, the present progressive is used to talk about what a subject is doing right now. However, it is also possible to use the simple present to talk about what a subject is doing right now in Spanish. Check out the pair of examples below; the first set uses the present simple, while the second uses the present progressive.