according to a grammar site

Try + -ing means that you are trying something as an experiment, especially as a possible solution to a problem, to see if it works or not.


Try + to + infinitive means that something is difficult but you are making an effort to do it.

But in some posts like a StackExchange post

I can't find mention of a degree of effort. In Korea, I've been taught to strictly distinguish two of them(by what "a grammar site" says), so it's confusing to me that they don't talk about a degree of effort.

  • You've written the same definition twice, where presumably you intended to show us two different definitions (one for try doing, and one for try to do). Please edit the post to correct this. Feb 13, 2023 at 11:27
  • @FumbleFingers umm no, I intended to show you two different version of posts which compares try doing and try to do
    – doraemon1
    Feb 13, 2023 at 11:49
  • Check your question text again. You've written exactly the same text in the two consecutive sentences starting with Try + -ing means that... Feb 13, 2023 at 11:56
  • @FumbleFingers I edited the question
    – doraemon1
    Feb 13, 2023 at 11:59
  • @FumbleFingers sorry, no
    – doraemon1
    Feb 13, 2023 at 12:00

1 Answer 1



[1] You should try to eat less.

[2] You should try eating less.

Here, the infinitival and gerund-participial forms of "try" have a difference of meaning.

In [1] "try" means "endeavour"; in [2] "try" means "test the effectiveness of".

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