Friday, June 24, 2016

Go, Play, or Do: Verbs for Hobbies, Sports, and Activities in the English Language

In English, there are three verbs that we love to use when we talk about our hobbies. These verbs are to go, to play, and to do. How we use these verbs is very simple, and today we're going to tell you what you need to know in order to use them correctly.


The verb "go" is arguably the simplest of our three verbs to use. If you have an activity that ends in -ing, you should use go. For example, fishing, swimming, hiking.

Don't forget to conjugate go when you use it. For example:

On Saturdays, I go fishing.
Yesterday, I went swimming.
Have you ever gone hiking?

However, as always in English, there are a few exceptions to this rule. Boxing (as a combat sport), takes the verb do, which we'll see soon.


Most competitive team sports, especially those with a goal, net, basket, or a system for scoring points, use the verb to play. This also includes games and video games.

Here are a few examples: football, basketball, hockey, video games.

Let's look at some examples:

John likes to play football.
We played video games all weekend.
Do you play hockey?

You can "do" this crossword but you can't "play" it.

We use the verb to do with activities like martial arts, combat sports, exercises, and puzzles. Examples include karate, push-ups, crosswords.

Here you can see the verb to do being used:

She's done karate since she was 6.
Did you do last week's crossword?
I did a lot of push-ups yesterday.

And that's it! That's how we use some of the English language's most important verbs when we talk about hobbies, sports, and activities.

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