Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Saudi Arabia to start granting licences for female gym operations

Saudi Arabia to start granting licences for female gym operations
February 15, 2017

After years of expectation, Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Sports is to begin issuing licences for women’s gyms at the end of this month.

Three Saudi Government ministries are set to take part in the licencing process - the labour, rural affairs and commerce ministries – with licences to be issued to facilities that contribute to weight loss and fitness, such as swimming, running and bodybuilding.

Licenses will not be issued for gyms that offer competitive activities, such as football, volleyball, basketball and tennis.

The General Authority of Sports (GSA) reportedly aims to open gyms in every district and neighbourhood and will be holding workshops and seminars to motivate women to invest in gyms.

Previously religious authorities have objected to women’s fitness and recreational activities, although some facilities have operated unofficially.

The move constitutes progress in a country that has yet to introduce sport in public girl’s schools and has no public facilities for women’s sport.

At least two years in the making, the licensing rules reflect Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s Vision 2030 plan for social and economic reforms that would rationalise and diversify the kingdom’s economy.

Vision 2030 plans involve streamlining government expenditure, including public health costs in a country that boasts one of the world’s highest rates of obesity and diabetes.

Princess Reema bin Bandar, Vice President for Women’s Affairs at the GSA, told local news outlet Okaz “it is not my role to convince the society, but my role is limited to opening the doors for our girls to live a healthy lifestyle away from diseases that result from obesity and lack of movement.”

Vision 2030 identifies sports “as a mainstay of a healthy and balanced lifestyle and promises “to encourage widespread and regular participation in sports and athletic activities.”

The licensing of women’s gyms is occurring even though Vision 2030 made no reference to facilities for women. The document also failed to even implicitly address demands by the International Olympic Committee and human rights groups that women be allowed to compete freely in all athletic disciplines rather than only ones mentioned in the Koran. 

13th February 2017 - ARABIAN GULF NATIONS TO TAX SUGARY DRINKS

15th June 2016 - FITNESS OPERATORS SHARE TIPS FOR STAYING ACTIVE THROUGH RAMADAN 

23rd June 2015 - ONE IN FOUR FITNESS CLUB MEMBERS WOULD PAY MORE FOR SINGLE-SEX GYMS

28th January 2015 - EXERCISE TONES WOMEN’S MINDS AS WELL AS THEIR BODIES

15th July 2014 - FITNESS FIRST OPENS NEW FACILITIES IN UAE

30th April 2013 - WOMEN’S SPORTS CLUBS APPLY FOR LICENCES IN SAUDI ARABIA

11th April 2013 - SAUDI ARABIA SET TO LICENSE WOMEN’S SPORTS CLUBS

15th June 2010 - SAUDI CLERIC SAYS SPORT IS ‘CORRUPTING’ WOMEN

16th April 2010 - SAUDI OFFICIALS CLOSE ‘ILLEGAL’ WOMEN’S FITNESS CENTRE


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

REGUPOL

Regupol Australia Pty Ltd offers a comprehensive range of recycled rubber fitness and leisure flooring surfaces. Their range of products include everroll rubber flooring, Regupol elastic…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Safety / Surfaces

 
 

Centaman Entrance Control

Turnstile Entry Systems and Access Control Centaman Entrance Controls’ Award Winning Range of Access Control Systems includes tripod & triarm turnstiles, speedgates, full height…

read more

Access / Entertainment / Sport / Ticketing / Venues

 
 

HYPOXI Australia Pty Ltd

HYPOXI®  is one of Europe’s most successful health and weight loss studio concepts.  It’s the first weight loss technology to incorporate exercise with advanced vacuum and…

read more

Fitness / Technology / Wellness

 
 

Fun Wheels Pty Ltd

Fun Wheels Pty Ltd are the premium dealer in Australasia for the Dutch company BERG’s commercial and domestic products. Our flagship product is their revolutionary pedal go-kart – the…

read more

Attractions / Tourism / Venues

 
 

Aussie Strength

We are Aussie Strength. The ultimate supplier for Commercial Gym Equipment that's built to deliver in the toughest environments. From USA-Built hardcore weight training equipment from Arsenal…

read more

Fitness / Technology / Wellness

 
 

Fitness On Demand

Fitness On Demand™ is a market-leading developer of virtual group fitness products. Our innovative video delivery systems offer robust content and a simple-to-use, comprehensive web app. Fitness…

read more

Fitness / Technology / Wellness

 
 
 

Enta Australasia

As of the 1st July 2018, Enta Australasia Pty Ltd/Best Union has been rebranded as VIVATICKET Pty Ltd.  Click here to view the VIVATICKET Pty Ltd listing.  19th July 2018 - ENTA…

read more

Technology / Ticketing / Venues

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business