Jun 24, 2019

Rabbis oppose gyms and fitness centers

A group of rabbonim have published and signed a letter against gyms and fitness centers.

According to the letter, the existence of gyms and fitness centers in Jerusalem is a spiritual and educational problem. It would be one thing if they were just there for the secular public, but some advertise as an appropriate atmosphere for the Haredi community.

These gyms have television screens to watch while working out, and there is inappropriate (at best!) music playing in the background, along with general issues of tzniyus.

The letter continues that while we believe exercise is important and necessary for maintaining one's health, these gyms are not just for health but also promote a culture of body worship. For us it is a means, for them it is an end.

The conclusion is fairly tame with calling on parents to be aware of where their daughters are going to exercise and who else is there.

I am happy it is not a ban, but a call for awareness. Nothing wrong with warning parents to be aware of what is what .

I wonder why parents only need to worry about their daughters and not their sons.

The biggest threat posed by these gyms is the statistics that show that most people who take out gym memberships. According to published statistics in the USA, 80% of people with gym memberships do not use them. I am not sure if that number is the same or similar here in Israel, but it is clear that most people dont use the gym after signing a membership. The rabbis could easily warn people of the waste of money involved and that might be enough for the majority to stay away...

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  1. Are talking separate gender gyms?

    1. based on the fact that mixed population was not an issue raised in the letter, I would assume so


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