Is Swimming Permissible While Fasting?

20 May, 2019
Q As-Salamu alaykum. Is it permissible for a fasting person to swim during daytime in Ramadan?

Answer

Wa `alaykum As-Salamu waRahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.

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

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.


In this fatwa:

If the swimmer thought that it wasn’t probable that water would reach his throat from the mouth, nose and ears then there is no harm in swimming during daytime in Ramadan because doing so doesn’t invalidate his fast.


Answering your question, the General Iftaa’ Department in Jordan, states the following:

If the swimmer thought that it wasn’t probable that water would reach his throat from the mouth, nose and ears then there is no harm in swimming during daytime in Ramadan because doing so doesn’t invalidate his fast.

However, jurists are of the view that this act is disliked.

It was narrated in the book “Al-Musannaf” that the Prophet (peace be upon him) was seen pouring water over his head while fasting, either because of thirst or because of heat. (Sahih al-Albani)

Al-Imam An-Nawawi said: “It is permissible for a fasting person to dip himself in water, and there is no disagreement among our fellow scholars about this opinion.”

However, if water reaches his throat then he is obliged not to eat or drink until it is called for Maghrib prayer of that day, and he must make up for it after Ramadan.

Moreover, if he thought that it is probable that water would reach his throat then it isn’t permissible for him to invalidate his fast by swimming.

However, if he did swim, and water reached his throat, then his fast is invalidated and he is obliged to make up for that day after Ramadan and offer repentance.

Al-Imam al-Ramli stated: “If he knows that water usually reaches his throat when he engages in swimming and that he can’t avoid it, then it is prohibited for him to swim and his fasting is definitely invalidated.”

Almighty Allah knows best.

Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.