I have swum in this pool every afternoon. this sentence means that I do not swim in this pool now and I won't swim in the pool. But I have been swimming in this pool every afternoon which means I still do this in the pool every afternoon. What is the difference?


1 Answer 1


There is very little difference. A tiny variation in nuance indicating if you view the swim as happening at one or more points in time in the past, or for one or more periods of time in the past.

In most contexts this doesn't make any difference, and so either is possible, and the slightly shorter "I have swum" would be preferred.

I have swum in this river, but I have never fished here.

I love swimming. I've been swimming in this river and it was a lot of fun

In the second case I'm talking about an activity that took a period of time. But in either of the above examples you could use both "have swum" or "have been swimming".

In some situations you are talking about a period of time.

I've been swimming in this river for the last 30 minutes and I haven't seen a single fish.

In this example "I've swum" would be correct, but it is natural to use "been swimming".

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .