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This can also be phrased as "I like to study" in English, and it means the same thing to us. When you are actively doing something, or speaking as if something is actively being done, you use gerund in Spanish.
Why do you study? I like to study. OR I like studying! <--infinitive.
What are you doing? I am studying <--gerund
The English gerund -ing' words used as noun or an adjective, does not exist in Spanish. The infinitive must be used instead. Spanish has a gerunio and has a present participle but it is not used as a noun or an adjective, nor is it used to express the near future. it is mainly used as an adverb.
There is a lot info on the net, but here is one reference:
I'm still a little bit confused but I think I get it. So if I said "I like to paint" and "I like (the action of) painting" it would be infinitive in both cases in Spanish? Are there any more examples (or websites) where the infinitive is used in Spanish where the gerund is used in English?
I think the point here is that Duo is showing that in English we can take the present participle and make it into a noun or an adjective, such as studying or swimming and it is called the English gerund. Also in English we can use the infinitive also to be a noun. But in Spanish, we cannot turn the present participle into a noun, and therefore the infinitive must be used.
In Spanish, the verb form that ends in -ndo is called gerundio and in English, present participle. While gerundio sounds much like the English word gerund, they are not quite the same thing.
In Spanish, there is no gerund as the only verb form that can function as a noun in Spanish is the infinitive. The gerundio is the present participle used as an ADVERB (Sigue buscando el perro.).
The participio presente, or present participle, is the verb form that ends in -ndo and is used to indicate something is happening right NOW. (Estoy buscando el perro.).