Some sports are built on pure Torah fundamentals: team effort, determination, hard work, adhering to strict rules, penalties, and earning more money than the rest of the population. Some sports, however, embody a more frum feel than others; that is, they possess and portray several characteristics that are more Torah-esque than other sports. Here’s a presentation of 6 popular sports to consider so that when we have the next giant gathering, this time to persuade Jews from following professional sports (at some big stadium in NY), we can try to figure out which one is actually muttar to follow based on frum principles .
1) Soccer: Soccer has a few halachic issues, the most obvious one being the tznua factor: shorts are simply not tznius. Their shirts also possess an issue in that they have a lot of color to them and the sleeves are too short, but some poskim hold that men are allowed to show their arms and legs because women don’t get turned on by these things. The thing that really makes soccer completely unfrum is the fans. The fans are notorious for being violent, and the only time violence is really good in the Torah is when we push somebody off a cliff and throw stones at them for chopping wood on a Friday night. Ruling: Reform
2) Hockey: Unlike soccer, the players have enough layers on them to make Bais Yaakov in Lakewood look like Florida during Spring Break. They also cover their heads, which is more than most Jews can say. What makes this sport not so Torah-ish is the violence: hockey players fight and push each other into boards, while you’d be hard pressed to ever see or hear of one Jew act aggressively towards other Jews in the name of success. Worse, the referees actually allow the fights to finish, and we can compare them to somebody standing idly by while there is bloodshed. Ruling: Ortho-prax
3) Football: Where to begin? Football is usually never on Shabbos, so that’s one good thing they got going for them. Unlike hockey, however, this sport features a rule that makes tackling mandatory. This idea is so anti-Torah that it doesn’t offset the frum scoring system, which allows you to score 6 points at once and then add another point. This is comparable to doing a mitzvah and getting rewards in bunches. Of course, it also works the other way – – – one averia means you’re now down by 7. In football, like Torah, even the smallest of millimeters counts in one way or the other, but there is always somebody to review it in football and then TELL you afterwards. The biggest drawback for football’s religious chances is that you have one team for offense and one team for defense: in Judaism you’re supposed to be able to master the entire Torah by yourself, so by showing young, impressionable kids that there are sports which allow athletes to master only one skill, you are essentially sending the message that they can focus on only 306.5 mitzvos. Ruling: Pick-and-choose-adox
4) Baseball: Unlike football, most players have to be good at offense and defense. This illustrates to people that they must try to succeed in all aspects of halacha. They also cover their heads and tuck in their shirts.However, baseball is always played on Shabbos, and this would invite people to either break Shabbos or leave on the TV or radio. Moreover, the entire notion of stealing bases is so anti-Torah: Jews. Don’t. $teal. Ruling: OTD
5) Tennis: This might be the most unfrum sport. The players aren’t tznius at all, and even untznius women (gasp) participate in this sport. Plus, the sounds that some of the players make while playing should NOT be made in the holy confines of the Beis Hamedrash. Also, the word “love” is used all too frequently. This word should be used only with regards to Hashem or other yidden, and not for some silly sport, chas v’chalila. Ruling: Neturei Karta
6) Golf: I wish to argue that this is the most frum sport. First off, the players are extremely tznius, and they cover their heads. There is no violence, no theft, and no crazy,drunk mob waiting to riot. Additionally, the choice of golf clubs that the players have is comparable to selecting a sefer to learn: no matter which club you choose, ultimately it is still a club; Similarly, some days you have to learn gemara, other days you have to learn a different type of gemara, but at the end of the day you have to learn A gemara or else you will never succeed. Ruling: Modern-Ultra-Conservadox