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."

Yo compito I compete Yo compito por mi país.
compites You compete Tú compites en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ella compite You/he/she competes Ella compite por increíbles premios.
Nosotros competimos We compete Nosotros competimos para ser los mejores.
Vosotros competís You compete Vosotras competís con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellas compiten You/they compete Ellos 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.

Yo competí I competed Yo competí por mi país.
competiste You competed Tú competiste en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ella compitió You/he/she competed Ella compitió por increíbles premios.
Nosotros competimos We competed Nosotros competimos para ser los mejores.
Vosotros competisteis You competed Vosotras competisteis con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellas compitieron You/they competed Ellos 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."

Yo competía I was competing Yo competía por mi país.
competías You were competing Tú competías en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ella competía You/he/she was competing Ella competía por increíbles premios.
Nosotros competíamos We were competing Nosotros competíamos para ser los mejores.
Vosotros competíais You were competing Vosotras competíais con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellas competían You/they were competing Ellos 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.

Yo competiré I will compete Yo competiré por mi país.
competirás You will compete Tú competirás en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ella competirá You/he/she will compete Ella competirá por increíbles premios.
Nosotros competiremos We will compete Nosotros competiremos para ser los mejores.
Vosotros competiréis You will compete Vosotras competiréis con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellas competirán You/they will compete Ellos 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.

Yo voy a competir I am going to compete Yo voy a competir por mi país.
vas a competir You are going to compete Tú vas a competir en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Usted/él/ella va a competir You/he/she is going to compete Ella va a competir por increíbles premios.
Nosotros vamos a competir We are going to compete Nosotros vamos a competir para ser los mejores.
Vosotros vais a competir You are going to compete Vosotras vais a competir con otras mujeres.
Ustedes/ellos/ellas van a competir You/they are going to compete Ellos van a competir en la Copa Mundial.

Competir Conditional Indicative

Yo competiría I would compete Yo competiría por mi país, pero no tengo el puntaje necesario.
competirías You would compete Tú competirías en el campeonato de Uruguay si no estuvieras enferma.
Usted/él/ella competiría You/he/she would compete Ella competiría por increíbles premios si estuviera en el concurso.
Nosotros competiríamos We would compete Nosotros competiríamos para ser los mejores, pero no tenemos rivales.
Vosotros competiríais You would compete Vosotras competiríais con otras mujeres si hubieran más equipos.
Ustedes/ellos/ellas competirían You/they would compete Ellos 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 yo compita That I compete El gobierno demanda que yo compita por mi país.
Que tú compitas That you compete Es buena idea que tú compitas en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Que usted/él/ella compita That you/he/she compete Antonio quiere que ella compita por increíbles premios.
Que nosotros compitamos That we compete Es importante que nosotros compitamos para ser los mejores.
Que vosotros compitáis That you compete Estamos felices de que vosotras compitáis con otras mujeres.
Que ustedes/ellos/ellas compitan That you/they compete Me 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 yo compitiera That I competed El gobierno demandaba que yo compitiera por mi país.
Que tú compitieras That you competed Era buena idea que tú compitieras en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Que usted/él/ella compitiera That you/he/she competed Antonio quería que ella compitiera por increíbles premios.
Que nosotros compitiéramos That we competed Era importante que nosotros compitiéramos para ser los mejores.
Que vosotros compitierais That you competed Estábamos felices de que vosotras compitierais con otras mujeres.
Que ustedes/ellos/ellas compitieran That you/they competed Me alegraba que ellos compitieran en la Copa Mundial.

Option 2

Que yo compitiese That I competed El gobierno demandaba que yo compitiese por mi país.
Que tú compitieses That you competed Era buena idea que tú compitieses en el campeonato de Uruguay.
Que usted/él/ella compitiese That you/he/she competed Antonio quería que ella compitiese por increíbles premios.
Que nosotros compitiésemos That we competed Era importante que nosotros compitiésemos para ser los mejores.
Que vosotros compitieseis That you competed Estábamos felices de que vosotras compitieseis con otras mujeres.
Que ustedes/ellos/ellas compitiesen That you/they competed Me alegraba que ellos compitiesen en la Copa Mundial.

Imperative Forms of Competir

The imperative mood is used for direct commands.

Imperative (Positive Command)

compite Compete! ¡Compite en el campeonato de Uruguay!
Usted compita Compete! ¡Compita por los increíbles premios!
Nosotros compitamos Let's compete! ¡Compitamos para ser los mejores!
Vosotros competid Compete! ¡Competid con otras mujeres!
Ustedes compitan Compete! ¡Compitan en la Copa Mundial!

Imperative (Negative Command)

no compitas Don't compete! ¡No compitas en el campeonato de Uruguay!
Usted no compita Don't compete! ¡No compita por los increíbles premios!
Nosotros no compitamos Let's not compete! ¡No compitamos para ser los mejores!
Vosotros no compitáis Don't compete! ¡No compitáis con otras mujeres!
Ustedes no compitan

Don't compete!

¡No compitan en la Copa Mundial!