Can we use the present continuous with a gerund in instances other than have been + present participle + gerund , am considering + gerund, and "am going to + gerund" ?

I've taken the following examples from "Thinking About Using -ing Words?" at Learning English.

verb + gerund One common situation in which two -ing words can appear next to each other is when the first -ing word is part of a continuous verb tense and the second -ing word is a gerund, as in the first example:

I’ve been avoiding going to the doctor.

Here, have been avoiding is the present perfect continuous form of to avoid. Going is the gerund.

Here’s another example:

I’m considering buying a home in DC.

Here, am considering is the present continuous form of the verb to consider. Buying is the gerund.

go + gerund Two -ing words can also appear together in what we call “go + gerund.” Go + gerund is an example of the verb + gerund construction.

In English, we add the verb to go to certain recreational activities. These activities include fishing, swimming, shopping and skating, plus more than a dozen more.

Because of this, when go is in the continuous verb tense, you will see two -ing words together.


I’m going shopping in Alexandria next weekend.

In this sentence, am going is the present continuous form of the verb to go and the gerund is shopping.

Here’s another:

We’re going skating on Friday in the sculpture garden.

In this sentence, are going is the present continuous form of the verb to go and skating is the gerund.

Note, however, that you will not see two -ing words together when go is not in the continuous tense with these activities. For example: “We went skating in the sculpture garden last Friday” is still part of the go + gerund structure.

Are there any other grammar constructions than these with a verb-ing + gerund?


  • 1
    I should mention that "I'm considering buying," one of the examples quoted, uses neither "have been + present participle + gerund" nor "am going to + gerund." So, that actually answers your question with "yes," without the need to provide anything else … Commented Jul 21, 2020 at 0:45
  • Yes oops , fixed question to show changes. I just want to know if there is a rule to this really, or a list of verbs somewhere ...
    – meepyer
    Commented Jul 21, 2020 at 0:49

1 Answer 1


Great question! A few moments ago, I was sitting enjoying a glass of whiskey, and began to wonder whether [sit] is a transitive verb and whether [enjoying a glass of whiskey] can function as its direct object. A quick search brought me to your unanswered question.

I've now googled a variety of combinations of "[am/are/is/was] sitting [gerund]", and found many common usages, such as: am sitting enjoying, am sitting drinking, am sitting eating, am sitting playing.

The verb [sit] is not listed as a catenative verb, but there are a variety of catenative verbs that would lead to the construction you are inquiring about. For example, the catenative verb [advise] produces, "He is advising leaving now." See this list of catenative verbs that license gerunds.

This process leads me to believe that at least one sense of the verb [sit] is a catenative that licenses gerunds. Or, perhaps [sit] is not catenative, in which case, my gerund, [enjoying a glass of whiskey], in functioning as an adjunct adverbial. I'd appreciate comments on those possibilities.

In either case, my answer to your question is a definitive yes.

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