Spanish Reflexive Verb Conjugation (2023)

Learn about Spanish reflexive verb conjugation, then come back and review what you learned with these audio flash cards and the Lingo Dingo review game.

Spanish mini-course

Moving on with reflexive conjugation, now we’ll try conjugating the Spanish verb “Bañarse” which means “to bathe (oneself)”

I bathe (myself) would be: me baño We bathe (ourselves) would be: nos bañamos
(Juan) you bathe (yourself) would be: te bañas You bathe (yourselves) – if you are on a first-name basis with a group of people in Spain- would be: os bañáis
He, she or Dr. Garcia, you bathe (yourself) would be: se baña And finally: They or all of you bathe (yourselves) would be: se bañan
(Video) REFLEXIVE VERBS: How to use (conjugate) them in Spanish

Remember that the verb endings are the same as those in present tense, the difference is that here we add the “reflexive pronouns”. Now we’ll look at one more concept, then have a practice session. Before learning this concept, we need to learn a few new Spanish words.

They are:
Hand(s) – mano(s), las manos
arm – el brazo
finger – el dedo
hair – el pelo
foot – el pie
hat or cap – la gorra
face – la cara
watch – el reloj

Now on to our new concept. This is one of those things that they simply do differently in Spanish that you just have to learn. The way they do it may sound strange at first, but you have to realize that the way we say certain things in English also sound strange to a Spanish speaker at first. It has to do with things that you do to yourself.

Here’s how it Works:

If I want to say “I wash my hands” in Spanish I would say “I wash myself the hands” or “me lavo las manos
If I want say “I dry my arm” in Spanish I would say “I dry myself the arm” or “me seco el brazo
If I want say “I brush my hair” in Spanish I would say “I brush myself the hair” or “me cepillo el pelo
“I shave my face" would be “I shave myself the face" or “me afeito la cara
And finally, I take off my hat would be “I take myself off the hat” or “me quito la gorra”.

(Video) Using Reflexive Verbs in Spanish!

I realize that this is a new concept and it sounds very different from what you’re used to, but it’s simply the way it’s done in Spanish. The next lesson will review this concept and help you practice it.

Spanish Practice Session

Now, let’s have a verbal quiz. We’ll practice a few verbs that use this concept, then a few plain reflexive verbs. Are you ready?

(Juanita) You brush your hair Te cepillas el pelo
He burns his finger Se quema el dedo
She dries off her arm Se seca el brazo
(Dr. Garcia) You break your foot Se rompe el pie
All of you shave your faces Se afeitan las caras
I take my hat off Me quito la gorra
She washes her hands Se lava las manos
I bathe (myself) Me baño
We get sick Nos enfermamos
He showers Se ducha
All of you get angry a lot Se enojan mucho

Now we’ll take a look at some unique cases with reflexive verbs. Remember, we learned that some verbs can be reflexive or not reflexive. For example, the phrase “I look at the cars” or “Miro los carros” is not reflexive” but the phrase “I look at myself” or “Me miro” is reflexive because the subject is repeated twice. Now, if we take that idea a little farther, a few reflexive verbs can actually change meaning depending on whether they are used as reflexive verbs or not.

For example, the word “Levanto” means “I lift” and, used as a reflexive, “Me levanto” means “I get up” as in “to get up out of bed”. Another example is the verb “arreglar”. “Yo arreglo” means “I fix” and, as a reflexive, “Me arreglo” means “I get (myself) ready”.

Take a look at the following chart of verbs that can change meaning when changed from non-reflexive to reflexive. You don’t need to memorize all of these right now, but just know that they exist. After you see them all, click the “Next” button when you are ready to continue.

(Video) Reflexive Verbs in Spanish | The Language Tutor *Lesson 37*

Llamar Means To call Llamarse Means To be named
Arreglar Means To fix Arreglarse Means To get ready
Reunir Means To gather together Reunirse Means To meet
Dedicar Means To dedicate Dedicarse a Means To work (at a particular job or field)
Levantar Means To lift Levantarse Means To get up

Some verbs are always reflexive no matter what. A verb that does this is quejarse which means “to complain”. It is “always” used as a reflexive verb. Let’s try a few sentences with “quejarse” so you can see how it works.

“I complain” would be “Me quejo”
“I complain about them” would be “Me quejo de ellos”
“She complains about me” would be “Se queja de mí”
“They complain a lot” would be “Se quejan mucho”.

Now let’s take a look at a couple more verbs before going continuing on to our practice session. The first one is “preocuparse” which means “to worry”. If I say, “to worry about”, I would say, “preocuparse por”. Usually the word “about” in Spanish is “de”. This case is an exception where “por” takes the place of “de”. If I said “They worry about us”, in Spanish it would be “Se preocupan por nosotros”. The phrase, “She worries about me” would be “Se preocupa por mí”.

Now we’ll look at two more verbs that require extra words called prepositions on the end. Prepositions are words like about, with, for, in, upon and so forth. With the verb “to forget”, if you add another word on after, you need to add the Spanish word “de” which means “of” “from” or “about”. For example, if you say “I always forget to go” in Spanish it would be “Siempre me olvido de ir” and the phrase “I always forget about them” would be “Siempre me olvido de ellos”.

Now, for the last unique case before the practice session. In English, when we talk about marrying someone, we say “She is getting married to him.” But in Spanish, we say “She is getting married with him” or “Ella se casa con él”. The phrase “Carlos is getting married to Rosa” in Spanish would be “Carlos se casa con Rosa”. As you go on to the next practice session, see if you can pick out the special cases we talked about in this lesson.

(Video) Learn Spanish Grammar - Reflexive Verbs in Spanish

Practice Session

Keep these concepts in mind as we have our next practice session. A few of the verbs fit into the concepts we just covered. See if you can pick out which ones do:

I get married to her Me caso con ella
Her name is (she calls herself) Rosa Se llama Rosa
We are getting ready Nos arreglamos
I am meeting with her today Me reuno con ella hoy
They complain Se quejan
(Juan) You worry about her Se preocupa por ella
What do you do? (What do you dedicate yourself to?) A qué se dedica?
They get up Se levantan
(Mrs. Garcia) You get tired Se cansa
He forgets to eat Se olvida de comer
We are staying here Nos quedamos aquí
They worry about me. Se preocupan por mí.


How do I conjugate reflexive verbs in Spanish? ›

To conjugate reflexive verbs, the verb is conjugated according to the subject and the reflexive pronoun matches subject in person (1st, 2nd, or 3rd) and in number (singular or plural). In the example, levantabas is conjugated in the second person singular and te is also second person singular.

What are 10 reflexive verbs in Spanish? ›

List of reflexive verbs:
  • aburrirse - to get bored.
  • acercarse - to get close to.
  • acordarse de - to remember.
  • acostarse - to go to bed.
  • acostumbrarse a - to get accustomed to (to get use to)
  • afeitarse - to shave.
  • aficionarse a - to become interested in.
  • alegrarse - to become (be) happy.

What are the rules for reflexive verbs in Spanish? ›

In simple terms, reflexive verbs in Spanish are used when a person performs an action to or for him/herself. For example, I wake (myself) up, he gets (himself) dressed, she showered (herself), and so on. In other words, the subject and direct object of the reflexive verb is the same.

What are the 7 reflexive pronouns? ›

Grammar explanation. Reflexive pronouns are words like myself, yourself, himself, herself, itself, ourselves, yourselves and themselves.

What are all 4 reflexive pronouns in Spanish? ›

What Are The 5 Reflexive Pronouns In Spanish?
  • me (myself)
  • te (yourself),
  • se (yourself (formal), himself, herself).
  • nos (ourselves)
  • se (yourselves, themselves).

What are the 5 most important Spanish verbs? ›

The top 12 most common Spanish verbs you'll want to learn are:
  • Hacer = To do or make.
  • Ir = To go.
  • Venir = To come.
  • Decir = To say or tell.
  • Poder = To be able.
  • Dar = To give.
  • Ver = To see.
  • Saber = To know.

What are the 7 most used verbs in Spanish? ›

Teaching the Super 7 Verbs in Spanish
  • 1 está (is at a place / is feeling)
  • 2 hay (there is / there are)
  • 3 tiene (has)
  • 4 es (is)
  • 5 le gusta (likes / is pleasing to)
  • 6 va (goes / is going)
  • 7 quiere (wants)
7 Feb 2019

What are the 18 tenses in Spanish? ›

  • Present Simple Tense.
  • Imperfect Tense.
  • Preterite Tense.
  • Future Simple.
  • Simple Conditional Tense.
  • Present Perfect Tense.
  • Past Perfect Tense (Pluperfect Tense)
  • Past Anterior Tense (Preterite Perfect Tense)
28 Oct 2022

What are the 14 tenses in Spanish? ›

In total, there are 14 (7 simple and 7 compound): Present, Imperfect, Preterite, Future, Conditional, Present Perfect, Pluperfect, Preterit Perfect, Future Perfect, Conditional Perfect, Present Subjunctive, Imperfect Subjunctive, Present Perfect Subjunctive, and Pluperfect Subjunctive.

What are the 7 tenses in Spanish? ›

The following are the simple tenses and their uses:
  • Present (presente)
  • Imperfect (pretérito imperfecto)
  • Preterite (pretérito indefinido)
  • Future (futuro simple or futuro imperfecto)
  • Simple conditional (condicional simple or pospretérito)
  • Present perfect (pretérito perfecto)

What are the 50 most common verbs in Spanish? ›

The 50 Most Common Spanish Verbs
12 more rows
26 Sept 2012

How do you remember reflexive in Spanish? ›

The Easiest Way to Learn Spanish Reflexive Verbs
  1. Yo me (myself) Nosotros nos (ourselves) Tú te (yourself) Vosotros os (yourselves) ...
  2. Me baño. – I bathe (myself). ...
  3. Remember that if you are using a reflexive verb in a command, you must always include the pronoun.
5 Mar 2018

How do you know if a verb is reflexive? ›

A reflexive verb, simply put, is when both the subject AND the object of a sentence are the SAME. Essentially, a person is performing the action on oneself. Some examples of reflexive verbs are: cansarse, ducharse, despertarse, vestirse.

How do you know if a sentence is reflexive? ›

Reflexive pronouns are words ending in -self or -selves that are used when the subject and the object of a sentence are the same (e.g., I believe in myself). They can act as either objects or indirect objects.

What is the rule for reflexive pronouns? ›

A reflexive pronoun is a specific type of pronoun that is used for the object of a verb when it refers to the same noun as the subject of that verb. In English, these are the pronouns that end with “self” or “selves”: e.g., “himself,” “myself,” “ourselves,” etc.

What are the 3 main pronouns? ›

Types of Pronouns with Examples
  • Relative Pronouns are pronouns that are used to relate one part of the sentence to another. ...
  • Possessive Pronouns are pronouns that are used to show possession. ...
  • Reflexive Pronouns are pronouns that are used to refer back to the subject in the sentence.

What are the 12 types of pronouns? ›

There are 12 personal pronouns for a person or group, and they are: I, you, he, she, it, we, they, me, him, her, us and them. Personal pronouns help to avoid repetition of the same word used to refer to somebody. If the noun is plural, then the pronoun replacing it is also plural.

How do you use me te se nos se? ›

The singular reflexive pronouns are: me (myself), te (yourself), and se (yourself (formal), himself, herself). The plural reflexive pronouns are: nos (ourselves), os (yourselves - informal Spain), and se (yourselves, themselves). For example, consider the sentence, "Yo me baño," (I bathe myself, or I take a bath).

What are the 4 tenses in Spanish? ›

There are four past tenses in Spanish; the perfecto, the indefinido, the imperfecto and the pluscuamperfecto. These four tenses dance together when we tell stories about the past or anecdotes… The four are necessary to express when the action happens, but also to set up the context of that past story.

What are all six reflexive pronouns in Spanish? ›

In this post, we'll explore the world dominated by me, te, se, nos, and os. These weird little words enable reflexive words to work.

How do you memorize a verb quickly? ›

The 8 Top Tricks for Remembering Irregular English Verbs
  1. Group common irregular verbs together. ...
  2. Learn all new vocabulary with its tense forms. ...
  3. Memorize the 10 most common irregular verbs first. ...
  4. Turn memorizing into a game. ...
  5. Learn in sentences. ...
  6. Learn with songs. ...
  7. Leave lists where you can see them. ...
  8. Ask people to correct you.
27 Feb 2020

What verbs should I learn first in Spanish? ›

The three main tenses you should learn first in Spanish are the present (el presente), the past (also called the preterite, el pretérito), and the future (el futuro). They're the ones you'll run into most. You can get a lot of things across from these tenses and still be understood in the beginning.

What are the 23 main verbs? ›

Helping verbs, helping verbs, there are 23! Am, is, are, was and were, being, been, and be, Have, has, had, do, does, did, will, would, shall and should. There are five more helping verbs: may, might, must, can, could!

What are the 3 irregular verbs in Spanish? ›

The verbs ser (to be), ir (to go), and ver (to see) are completely irregular in the imperfect tense.

What are the 25 main verbs? ›

25 Most Common Verbs
  • be.
  • have.
  • do.
  • say.
  • get.
  • make.
  • go.
  • know.

What is the hardest Spanish tense? ›

The Subjunctive Tense in Spanish

This is one of the most confusing verb tenses for English speakers to understand. The reason? There really is no such tense used in English language, hence all the mind-boggling confusion.

Is French or Spanish easier? ›

Hopefully you now have a better understanding of why neither French or Spanish is easier to learn. The fact of the matter is that they share many similarities, and are equally different from English, so you can learn either one as a second language with relatively the same difficulty.

Is Spanish SVO or SOV? ›

The word order in Spanish is not as rigid as it is in English. It is normally SVO (subject - verb - object): Juan comió una manzana (Juan ate an apple)

What are the 5 ER verbs in Spanish? ›

Common -er Verbs
aprenderto learn
comprenderto understand; to comprehend
correrto run
creer (en)to believe (in)
leerto read
5 more rows

What are the 100 most used verbs in Spanish? ›

Common Spanish Verbs - Top 100
Ser (to be)Estar (to be)Top 100 Quiz
Haber (to have)Hablar (to speak)Hacer (to make)
Ir (to go)Jugar (to play)
Lavar (to wash)Leer (to read)Limpiar (to clean)
Llamar (to call)Llegar (to arrive)Llenar (to fill)
41 more rows

Do all languages have 3 tenses? ›

Some languages have all three basic tenses (the past, present, and future), while others have only two: some have past and nonpast tenses, the latter covering both present and future times (as in Arabic, Japanese, and, in some analyses, English), whereas others such as Greenlandic, Quechua, and Nivkh have future and ...

What are the 12 irregular verbs in Spanish? ›

Since the future simple tense is so regular, you'll be happy to know that there are only 12 basic future Spanish irregulars:
  • caber (to fit)
  • decir (to say)
  • haber (to have)
  • hacer (to do)
  • poder (can, to be able to)
  • poner (to put)
  • querer (to want)
  • tener (to have)
19 Feb 2021

How many 12 tenses are there? ›

The simple tenses (past, present, and future) are the most basic forms, but there are 12 major verb tenses in English in all.

What is the rarest verb? ›

Anyway, just in case you're still interested in finding out (and my students always are), the rarest verb tense in English (we should properly call it an aspect) is the future perfect continuous in the passive voice.

What are 5 easy Spanish words? ›

Basic Spanish Words
  • Hola (Hello)
  • Adios (Goodbye)
  • Gracias (Thank you)
  • Por favor (Please)
  • Si (Yes)
  • Claro (Of course)
  • No (No)
  • Amor (Love)
25 Aug 2021

What are the 3 most used verbs? ›

The ten most heavily used verbs in the English language are be, have, do, say, make, go, take, come, see, and get. The linguistic feature all these words share is that they are irregular.

What are 2 parts of a Spanish reflexive verb? ›

How are Spanish reflexive verbs formed? Reflexive verbs are formed with two main parts. The main verb is who is performing the action, and the reflexive pronoun is who the action is directed at. In the case of reflexive verbs, these will both refer to the same person.

Do you forget a reflexive verb in Spanish? ›

In Spanish there are different ways to express "to forget". The verb olvidar can be used as well as its reflexive form, olvidarse.

How do you say I go to bed reflexive in Spanish? ›

' The Spanish verb acostarse (ah-kohs-TAHR-seh) means: 'to go to bed'. As you see, it ends in se, which means it is a reflexive verb. 'Reflexive' means that the action of going to bed is done by and for the person who does the action.

What's the difference between reflexive and regular verb? ›

The reflexive verb pattern could be explained as referring to an instance when the subject completes action on itself. On the other hand, with a regular verb the subject completes an action on another subject or object.

Can all Spanish verbs be reflexive? ›

The behavior of Spanish reflexive verbs varies greatly. A large portion of Spanish verbs can be found in both normal and reflexive forms. But, when you look more closely you can see that some Spanish verbs are almost always reflexive, some rarely reflexive, and of course some in between.

What is a reflexive verb example? ›

A reflexive verb is a transitive verb whose subject and object always refer to the same person or thing, so the object is always a reflexive pronoun. An example is `to enjoy yourself,' as in `Did you enjoy yourself?'

How do you conjugate reflexive verbs examples? ›

Reflexive verbs are always conjugated with the reflexive pronoun that agrees with the subject: me (myself), te (yourself), se (himself, herself, itself, themselves), nous (ourselves), and vous (yourself, yourselves). These pronouns generally precede the verb.

What makes a sentence reflexive in Spanish? ›

A "reflexive" sentence is one in which the subject does something to him/herself. Or put another way, the subject and the object of the sentence refer to the same person. The action of the verb in a reflexive sentence is "reflected" back onto the subject.

How do you form reflexive in Spanish? ›

Reflexive verbs are much more common in Spanish than in English, and many are used in everyday language. The infinitive form of a reflexive verb has se attached to the end of it, for example, secarse (meaning to dry oneself). This is the way reflexive verbs are shown in dictionaries.

What are the three steps for conjugating a reflexive verb? ›

  1. First. infinitive+se at the end *ie. ...
  2. second. remove 'se' to determine the type of verb (ar, er, ir)
  3. third. conjugate the infinitive using the correct verb ending for the type of verb and person *this conjugation is for the person completing the action.
  4. fourth. ...
  5. fifth.

What are the steps for conjugating and using a reflexive verb? ›

To conjugate a reflexive verb, it is necessary to identify the verb group in which it belongs (-ar, -er, -ir) and follow the verb endings for that group. Additionally, the reflexive pronouns need to be changed to match the subject that is performing the action.

How do you conjugate verbs in Spanish? ›

To conjugate a verb in the present indicative, remove the infinitive ending from the regular verb, in this case -ar , -er or -ir, and replace it with an ending indicating "the person" who performs the action of the verb. For example, the word "caminar" (walk) is the infinitive of a common regular verb that ends in -ar.

How do you conjugate ar IR and ER verbs? ›

In Spanish, you conjugate verbs by changing the ending. If the subject is I (yo), conjugate by dropping the ending and add -o. If the subject is you – informal (tú), conjugate by dropping the ending and add -as (for -ar verbs) or -es (for -er and -ir verbs).

What are the 6 conjugations? ›

To be verb conjugation

In English, we have six different persons: first person singular (I), second person singular (you), third person singular (he/she/it/one), first person plural (we), second person plural (you), and third person plural (they). We must conjugate a verb for each person.

What are the 6 endings for ar verbs? ›

Lesson Summary

-Ar verbs have six endings: o, as, a, amos, áis, an. To conjugate the verb, we remove the -ar and add our endings: 'Hablar' becomes 'habl-.

How do you make a verb reflexive in Spanish? ›

The infinitive form of a reflexive verb has se attached to the end of it, for example, secarse (meaning to dry oneself). This is the way reflexive verbs are shown in dictionaries. se means himself, herself, itself, yourself, themselves, yourselves and oneself. se is called a reflexive pronoun.

How do you conjugate present reflexive verbs? ›

To conjugate a reflexive verb in El Presente in Spanish you need to use the reflexive pronoun matching each person, and then conjugate the verb normally.

What are the two parts of a reflexive verb? ›

Reflexive verbs are formed with two main parts. The main verb is who is performing the action, and the reflexive pronoun is who the action is directed at. In the case of reflexive verbs, these will both refer to the same person.

How do you master reflexive verbs in Spanish? ›

Here are the most important things you need to remember about reflexive verbs in Spanish: They express action performed by a subject on oneself. Reflexive verbs always work with a reflexive pronoun that cannot be left out. The verb form and the pronoun conjugate according to the grammatical person.


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