In English, we often use verbs followed by gerunds. Gerunds are verb forms used as nouns. In other words, it functions as a regular noun in a sentence. Today, I’ll share some of the more common verbs followed by gerunds, examples, and a worksheet to help you practice. Let’s get started!
What Are Gerunds?
In English, the term “gerund” refers to a verb used as a noun. For example, the word “swimming” is a gerund form of the verb “swim.” Gerunds can come after verbs such as “enjoy,” “approve,” and “suggest.”
For example, I might say, “I enjoy swimming,” or “He suggested swimming.” Sometimes, a gerund can even be used as the subject of a sentence. For example, “Swimming is good exercise.”
When used this way, gerunds often take on the same meaning as the related infinitive form of the verb. For example, the sentence “She likes to swim” could be rewritten as “Swimming is her favorite activity.”
As you can see, understanding how gerunds are used can be helpful in both spoken and written English. Now let’s look at verbs!
What Are Verbs?
They are words that express actions or a state of being. In English, verbs typically change form to indicate when the action is occurring. For example, the verb “walk” becomes “walks” in the present tense and “walked” in the past tense. Some verbs, such as “be” and “have,” are irregular, meaning they don’t follow the standard rules for conjugation.
How Are Gerunds Used After Verbs?
Gerunds are nouns formed from verbs by adding the suffix “-ing.” For example, the verb “run” can be turned into the gerund “running.” They can be used as the subject or object of a sentence and often follow other verbs.
For example, you might say, “I enjoy running,” or “He likes swimming.” In each of these sentences, the gerund is used as an object. To form a gerund, you must add “-ing” to the end of a regular verb.
When used after verbs, gerunds act like direct objects.
- I like hiking.
- I miss smoking in restaurants.
- I dread having to wash the dishes.
- My brother stopped listening to my advice.
- She hates smoking in bars.
When Should We Use -“ing” or “to” After a Verb?
In English grammar, base verbs can be followed by other verbs. To do so, the second verb needs to change its form to either gerund or verb gerund (verb ending in -ing) or infinitive (using “to” in front of it, just like it’s written in the dictionary).
This raises confusion regarding which verb form to use after the main verb in the sentence. Whether you use gerund or infinitive depends on what the first verb is.
List of Individual Verbs Followed by Gerunds
Here is a list of verbs that can be followed by gerunds that I came up with:
- be worth
- can’t help
- feel like
- give up (stop)
- keep (continue)
- keep on
- mind (object to)
- put off
List of Verbs Followed by Infinitives
Here’s my handy list of common verbs that an infinitive can follow:
- can/can’t afford
- can/can’t wait
- grow (up)
- turn out
- would like
Examples of Verbs Followed by Gerunds in Sentences
To better understand how the verb and gerund combo works, here are some example sentences:
- I understand wanting a better life for yourself.
- I don’t recall telling anyone about my new job.
- I was a little late, but Sarah didn’t mind waiting.
- Doctors recommend avoiding heavy meals before bedtime.
- Our professor resumed teaching the class.
The Bottom Line
Just remember that gerunds end in “-ing” and function as nouns. When used after verbs, gerunds act like direct objects. To understand when to use a gerund or an infinitive after the verb, consult my list of verbs. Hope that helps!