Spanish Verb Competir Conjugation

Competir Conjugation, Usage, and Examples

javelin throw
Ella compite en lanzamiento de jabalina (She competes in the javelin).

Sol de Zuasnabar Brebbia / Getty Images

The Spanish verb competir is a cognate of the English "compete" and typically has the same meaning. In some contexts, it is better translated as "to compare with," "to rival," or "to fight for." Below you'll find tables with the complete conjugation of competir

How to Conjugate Competir in Spanish?

Competir is a stem-changing verb, in this case meaning that in some situations the e in the stem becomes an i.

The stem always changes when the second syllable is stressed. For example, "I compete" is compito instead of the regular competo.

This change based on stress occurs in most of the indicative present, all of the subjunctive (present and preterite), and most of the imperative (or command) forms.

Additionally, the compet- stem becomes compit- in the third-person indicative preterite and the gerund, even though the change occurs in an unstressed syllable.

All these forms are shown below, along with the forms that follow the regular pattern for -ir verbs—the imperfect indicative, future indicative, and the conditional indicative. The past participle also is regular.

About two dozen verbs follow this pattern. Among the most common are impedir (to prevent), repetir (to repeat), servir (to serve), and vestir (to dress).

Competir Present Indicative

Possible translations for the Spanish present tense include, in addition to "compete," variations such as "is competing" and "does compete."

YocompitoI competeYo compito por mi país.
compitesYou competeTú compites en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ellacompiteYou/he/she competesElla compite por increíbles premios.
NosotroscompetimosWe competeNosotros competimos para ser los mejores.
VosotroscompetísYou competeVosotras competís con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellascompitenYou/they competeEllos compiten en la Copa Mundial.

Competir Preterite

The preterite (sometimes spelled preterit) is the equivalent of the simple past tense in English. It refers to actions that were completed at a definite time.

YocompetíI competedYo competí por mi país.
competisteYou competedTú competiste en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ellacompitióYou/he/she competedElla compitió por increíbles premios.
NosotroscompetimosWe competedNosotros competimos para ser los mejores.
VosotroscompetisteisYou competedVosotras competisteis con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellascompitieronYou/they competedEllos compitieron en la Copa Mundial.

Imperfect Indicative Form of Competir

The imperfect tense is used for past actions that aren't seen as being complete at a definite time. Common translations are "was/were + verb + -ing" and "used to + verb."

YocompetíaI was competingYo competía por mi país.
competíasYou were competingTú competías en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ellacompetíaYou/he/she was competingElla competía por increíbles premios.
NosotroscompetíamosWe were competingNosotros competíamos para ser los mejores.
VosotroscompetíaisYou were competingVosotras competíais con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellascompetíanYou/they were competingEllos competían en la Copa Mundial.

Competir Future Tense

As in English, the future tense of Spanish verbs can be used not only for future actions but also as a type of extremely emphatic command. Thus, for example, competirás can be not just a statement of fact about future competing but also as a way of forcefully telling someone to compete.

YocompetiréI will competeYo competiré por mi país.
competirásYou will competeTú competirás en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ellacompetiráYou/he/she will competeElla competirá por increíbles premios.
NosotroscompetiremosWe will competeNosotros competiremos para ser los mejores.
VosotroscompetiréisYou will competeVosotras competiréis con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellascompetiránYou/they will competeEllos competirán en la Copa Mundial.

Periphrastic Future of Competir

The periphrastic future in Spanish is the equivalent of the "going to + verb" future construction in English.

It is less formal than the standard future tense.

Yovoy a competirI am going to competeYo voy a competir por mi país.
vas a competirYou are going to competeTú vas a competir en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ellava a competirYou/he/she is going to competeElla va a competir por increíbles premios.
Nosotrosvamos a competirWe are going to competeNosotros vamos a competir para ser los mejores.
Vosotrosvais a competirYou are going to competeVosotras vais a competir con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellasvan a competirYou/they are going to competeEllos van a competir en la Copa Mundial.

Competir Conditional Indicative

YocompetiríaI would competeYo competiría por mi país, pero no tengo el puntaje necesario.
competiríasYou would competeTú competirías en el campeonato de Uruguay si no estuvieras enferma.
Usted/él/ellacompetiríaYou/he/she would competeElla competiría por increíbles premios si estuviera en el concurso.
NosotroscompetiríamosWe would competeNosotros competiríamos para ser los mejores, pero no tenemos rivales.
VosotroscompetiríaisYou would competeVosotras competiríais con otras mujeres si hubieran más equipos.
Ustedes/ellos/ellascompetiríanYou/they would competeEllos competirían en la Copa Mundial, pero no clasificaron.

Competir Present Progressive/Gerund Form

The Spanish gerund is much like the "-ing" verb form in English. It can be used with estar in forming the progressive or continuous tenses.

Gerund of Competir: compitiendo (competing)

Ella está compitiendo por increíbles premios. 

Past Participle of Competir

Past participles are used with haber in forming the perfect tenses.

Participle of Competir: competido (competed)

Ella ha competido por increíbles premios.

Present Subjunctive of Competir

The subjunctive mood is used considerably more in Spanish than in English. It can be used in dependent clauses, often to indicate reactions to or specify causes for the stated action.

Que yocompitaThat I competeEl gobierno demanda que yo compita por mi país.
Que túcompitasThat you competeEs buena idea que tú compitas en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Que usted/él/ellacompitaThat you/he/she competeAntonio quiere que ella compita por increíbles premios.
Que nosotroscompitamosThat we competeEs importante que nosotros compitamos para ser los mejores.
Que vosotroscompitáisThat you competeEstamos felices de que vosotras compitáis con otras mujeres.
Que ustedes/ellos/ellascompitanThat you/they competeMe alegra que ellos compitan en la Copa Mundial.

Competir Imperfect Subjunctive

The two choices below are used in the same way, although the first is more common.

Option 1

Que yocompitieraThat I competedEl gobierno demandaba que yo compitiera por mi país.
Que túcompitierasThat you competedEra buena idea que tú compitieras en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Que usted/él/ellacompitieraThat you/he/she competedAntonio quería que ella compitiera por increíbles premios.
Que nosotroscompitiéramosThat we competedEra importante que nosotros compitiéramos para ser los mejores.
Que vosotroscompitieraisThat you competedEstábamos felices de que vosotras compitierais con otras mujeres.
Que ustedes/ellos/ellascompitieranThat you/they competedMe alegraba que ellos compitieran en la Copa Mundial.

Option 2

Que yocompitieseThat I competedEl gobierno demandaba que yo compitiese por mi país.
Que túcompitiesesThat you competedEra buena idea que tú compitieses en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Que usted/él/ellacompitieseThat you/he/she competedAntonio quería que ella compitiese por increíbles premios.
Que nosotroscompitiésemosThat we competedEra importante que nosotros compitiésemos para ser los mejores.
Que vosotroscompitieseisThat you competedEstábamos felices de que vosotras compitieseis con otras mujeres.
Que ustedes/ellos/ellascompitiesenThat you/they competedMe alegraba que ellos compitiesen en la Copa Mundial.

Imperative Forms of Competir

The imperative mood is used for direct commands.

Imperative (Positive Command)

compiteCompete!¡Compite en el campeonato de Uruguay!
UstedcompitaCompete!¡Compita por los increíbles premios!
NosotroscompitamosLet's compete!¡Compitamos para ser los mejores!
VosotroscompetidCompete!¡Competid con otras mujeres!
UstedescompitanCompete!¡Compitan en la Copa Mundial!

Imperative (Negative Command)

no compitasDon't compete!¡No compitas en el campeonato de Uruguay!
Ustedno compitaDon't compete!¡No compita por los increíbles premios!
Nosotrosno compitamosLet's not compete!¡No compitamos para ser los mejores!
Vosotrosno compitáisDon't compete!¡No compitáis con otras mujeres!
Ustedesno compitan

Don't compete!

¡No compitan en la Copa Mundial!