Rulings on Swimming for women By Saudi Grand Mufti


Some Summer centers offer
swimming courses for women, but
the officials in these centers do not
pay any attention to women’s
swimwear, which reveals their
`Awrah (parts of the body that must
be covered in public) in front of
each another. Is swimming lawful
for women? Is it permissible for
them to learn swimming while
wearing immodest clothing?

Women violating the limits of the
Shari`ah (Islamic law) bring about
affliction and corruption for them
and others. If a woman is to learn
swimming at her home, no one can
prevent her, but if she is to go out
of her home to the centers that
teach swimming in clothes that do
not cover the `Awrah, this is
considered a violation of the
Shari`ah. The guardians should fear
Allah with regard to their daughters
and should take care of this trust
which Allah will ask them about.
The spread of these swimming
pools indicates that there is too
much spare time; many girls do not
get married because when suitors
ask for them in marriage, they face
many obstacles in most cases. So
girls suffer from too much leisure
and try to kill time by any means,
such as going to the swimming
pools. It is obligatory for every
Muslim to fear Allah, protect the
`Awrah of female Muslims, and take
speedy action to close these
swimming pools to ward off the
evils that may result from them.
This is because women going out,
intermixing with others, uncovering
their `Awrah in front of other
women, and looking at their `Awrah
is Haram (prohibited). It was related
by Imam Muslim that Abu Sa`id Al-
Khudry reported on the authority of
his father (may Allah be pleased
with them both) that the Messenger
of Allah (peace be upon him) said:
A man should not look at another
man’s `Awrah and a woman should
not look at another woman’s
`Awrah. It was also reported that
the Prophet (peace be upon him)
said to `Aly (may Allah be pleased
with him): Do not uncover your
thigh, and do not look at the thigh
of a living or dead person.

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