Category: Jurisprudence and Rulings (Fiqh)
Fatwa#: 39710
Asked Country: Australia

Answered Date: Feb 15,2018

Title: Clarification on Yoga Fatwa

Question

----Clarifications on Yoga Fatwa----

Asalaam Walkum.
I am after a clarification on Yoga, is it permissible to preform exercises that may or may not be used in yoga without uttering anything religious. Stretching before exercising is extremely important to prevent injuries, some exercise are also used within Yoga, an example of this is an exercises called the “Plank” this exercise is extremely popular to develop core strength and used wieldy throughout the fitness industry. Another example of an exercise is the Hamstring Pull, where a person lays on their back and brings there knee towards there chest stretching out there hamstring, even something as simple as stretching ones back by laying out wide or almost touching their toes is used within yoga. Physiotherapy will also use such exercises, as they are common. So it doesn’t make sense to disallow all exercises that are used throughout both yoga and other fields.

I have read another fatwa from Islamweb where they have mentioned it is permissible to preform exercises that don’t use any specific religious expressions as they then simply become an exercise and no longer yoga. See Below
“If this sport becomes free of atheist expressions and free of facing the sun, bowing for it and greeting it, it is no longer yoga. It becomes some simple physical exercises practiced by all people and there is no harm to practice it provided two things are met:First, re-odering the exercises in a way different than the one in yoga and introducing some new situations in it to avoid similarity with yoga.Second, avoiding practising these exercises in the times the Hindus observe it like at sunrise. “

Does AskImam also hold this position; I have read a previous fatwa on the site but would like some clarifications. JazakAllah for your time.

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

If the stretch exercises you refer to have nothing to do with yoga, then it is not yoga. We have stated that yoga is impermissible, not the stretch exercises you refer to.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Huzaifah Deedat

Student Darul Iftaa
Lusaka, Zambia 

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

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