Question:

Is it permissible to receive a professional massage during the Nine Days? The purpose of the massage is to relieve muscle tension, improve circulation, and release stress/relaxation. Although it is done for health reasons, it is somewhat of a treat, as I do not do it regularly, only when I am ready to spend the time and money. (Perhaps akin to swimming, which is done for health and pleasure.)
Thank you.

Answer:

In general we should try not to indulge in pleasures during this time, as it says “m’shnichnas Av mima’atim b’simcha”, halachically though, it is permitted. Getting a massage is different than swimming, because the reason why we don’t go swimming during the nine days is not because not is pleasurable, but because it is considered bathing for pleasure. Getting a massage even though it is pleasurable, it is not included in the custom not to bath.

Sources:

O:CH 551-1, 16.

Tags: nine days

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