back and forth / to and fro / toed and froed


Senior Member
Chinese - Mandarin

I and my daughter walked in a path. My daughter was very excited, she ran in front of me. First she ran to the front, away from me, then she turned around and ran towards me, then she ran away from me, then she ran towards me, again and again. Can I say the below three sentences to describe what my daughter was doing?

1, She ran back and forth.
I know a branch can sway back and forth, which means a short distance, but in this context my daughter ran a long distance, can I still use "back and forth" here?

2, She ran to and fro.
I read this thread, and I think I can use "to and fro" here, but is it old-fanshioned?

3, She toed and froed.
My dictionary gives a sample sentence "The ducks were toing and froing", but is it old-fashioned? When using the past form of the verbs, can I say "toed and froed"?

Thank you.
  • estoy_lerniendo

    Senior Member
    English - U.S. (Midwest)
    In everyday language, "to and fro" is not used much at all.

    She ran back and forth ​is the most typical way to express this.
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