I would like to see contrasting examples of the imperatives of to go. What are the differences among these?

  • ходи
  • иди
  • пойди

2 Answers 2


Ходи(те) is primarily used in negative sentences: "Не ходите, дети, в Африку гулять!" Иди, пойди are only used in positive contexts.

Пойди is telling someone to run an errand, to go somewhere with a particular goal: Пойди на кухню, принеси воды. If it's a simple round trip, сходи is preferable: Сходи в магазин, купи молока.

Иди is more concerned with the process of moving: "Стой! Теперь иди." although nowadays colloquially it can mean the same as пойди/сходи and it sounds a bit rude: Иди в магазин и купи молока.

  • "Не иди за мной" is pretty common, иди can well be used with the negative particle.
    – Yellow Sky
    Commented Feb 26, 2018 at 11:34
  • Go away home is only иди домой, not пойди, сходи. But go for some purpose all three can be used.
    – V.V.
    Commented Feb 26, 2018 at 19:01
  • 1
    иди in place of пойди/сходи besides sounding a bit rude has also patronizing aspect, which is at play when it's used for instance by a parent giving an instruction to their kid, but it works in any close relationship where there's hierarchy Commented Feb 27, 2018 at 19:17

The version ходи is about a continuous (going to and fro) or repeated action, while the version пойди is a request to go somewhere once (maybe for doing something there), another version of it is сходи (=пойди и вернись).

Repeated action:

Ходи весь этот месяц к врачу на уколы, и всё пройдёт.

Continuous action:

На тренировке ходи по бревну, пока не устанешь.

Single action:

Пойди в аптеку и принеси аспирин.

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