A pronominal verb always uses a reflexive pronoun. (e.g. Te ves cansado.).
1. (to become tense)
a. to tighten
Cuando llegó su exmujer, se le tensaron todos los músculos.When his ex-wife arrived, all his muscles tightened.
b. to become strained
Con la creciente inflación y el desempleo, la situación en el país se tensó.With growing inflation and unemployment, the situation in the country became strained.
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A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
2. (to stretch)
a. to tighten
Estoy tensando las cuerdas de tender la ropa porque estaban flojas.I am tightening the clotheslines because they were sagging.
b. to tense
Estar todo el día sentada en la computadora me tensa el cuello.Sitting at my computer all day tenses my neck.
c. to tauten
Tensó la cuerda y saltó.He tautened the rope and jumped.
d. to draw
Para lanzar la flecha correctamente hay que tensar el arco primero.In order to shoot the arrow properly you have to draw the arch first.
3. (to put under strain)
a. to strain
Las mentiras constantes de Graciela tensaron su relación al punto de separarse.Graciela's constant lies strained their relationship to the point that they split.
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