Movement and speed

Move is the basic verb for all movement, but do not forget it also means ‘to move to a new house/flat’, e.g. We’ve moved. Do you want our new address?

Particular types of movement

– Cars, lorries, etc. travel/drive along roads.
– Trains travel along rails.
– Boats/ships sail on rivers / across the sea.
– Rivers/streams flow/run through towns/villages.

Things often have particular verbs associated with their types of movement. You should learn these as collocations as you meet them, and record them with a phrase or sentence.

– White clouds drifted across the sky.
– The flag fluttered in the wind.
– The leaves stirred in the light breeze.
– The trees swayed back and forth as the gale grew fiercer.
– The car swerved to avoid a dog which had run into the road.

Useful verbs to describe fast and slow movement



– Everyone was hurrying/rushing to get their shopping done before closing time.
– The train was just trundling/plodding along at about 30 miles per hour. I knew we’d be late.

Nouns describing speed and their typical contexts