ASIA/AFGHANISTAN - Gym only for women, founded by a woman

Friday, 17 February 2017

United Nations Photo

Kabul (Agenzia Fides) – A gym only for women is having big success in Afghanistan. The experiment not only represents a commercial opportunity for the owner of the facility, but also an opportunity for girls, in a country still tied to traditions and strong social dogmas. Five years ago a businesswoman opened "Ladies World", a women only exercise facility with modern equipment, a beauty salon and area for physiotherapy. "Our initiative - reads a note sent to Fides - may come across as something unusual, but those who understand where I am coming from appreciate our efforts and encourage us to expand our business in other areas of Kabul city,
as well". The woman, in fact, got interested in exercise while living in Russia and Uzbekistan, there she developed a passion for gymnastics and body care. When she returned to Afghanistan, she started her business. "It was difficult at first. Cultural values and the novelty of a women-only gym meant I had to work hard on the marketing, educating women and their families about the benefits of exercise". In a country where religious fundamentalism is very strong, and in which the participation of women at work, in politics and not least in sport activities remains very low, a seemingly simple task can make a difference. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 17/02/2017)