Things to do

Sports and pastimes

Please note: There is a short delay when playing the audio clips.

¿Qué haces en tu tiempo libre? - What do you do in your free time?

Nado. - I swim.

Monto en bici. - I ride my bike.

Veo la tele. - I watch TV.

Leo un libro. - I read a book.

Patino. - I skate.

Can you see how all the verbs end in –o? That's how you can tell that it means 'I do it', and why you don't need to say yo (I) every time.

And can you see how the word nado (I swim) is related to the INFINITIVE - nadar (to swim)? (The INFINITIVE is the word you find in the dictionary if you look up 'swim' or 'dance' and it's like saying 'to swim' or 'to dance'.)

To make nado (I swim), the -ar has been taken off nadar and –o added.
To make leo (I read) you do the same. Take off the –er from leer (to read) and add –o.

Obviously there are some verbs that don't exactly follow that pattern (but that's life!).
For example, jugar is 'to play', but juego is 'I play'.

Juego al tenis. - I play tennis.

Juego al cricket. - I play cricket.

Juego al fútbol. - I play football.

Juego en el ordenador. - I play on the computer.

Did you notice that you say juego A and a sport but say juego EN to say you play on the computer?

If you want to show off a bit and say what you're good at doing, you can add the word bien after the verb:

(Yo) nado bien. - I'm good at swimming (literally, I swim well).

(Yo) leo bien. - I'm good at reading.

(Yo) juego bien al fútbol. - I'm good at playing football.

And to say you're not good at something? That's right, add a no before the verb!

No juego bien al tennis. - I'm not good at playing tennis / I don't play tennis well.

To say what you like to do is really easy - you use the phrase me gusta (I like) and the INFINITIVE.

Me gusta bailar. - I like to dance.

Me gusta leer. - I like to read.

Me gusta jugar al fútbol. - I like to play football.

The same is true for saying you can do something, except this time you use (yo) sé (I know how to) and the INFINITIVE. You might hear just + verb without the yo.

(Yo) sé nadar. - I know how to swim.

(Yo) sé leer. - I know how to read.

(Yo) sé cantar. - I know how to sing.

(Yo) sé jugar al cricket. - I know how to play cricket.