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Apr 2, 2013

how to say "exercise" in Hebrew

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The wonderful חַג הַפֶּסַח- Passover holiday - comes with lots of festive meals, and the calories build up. In order to maintain a healthy lifestyle during and after the holidays, one must exercise in some form or another.
Michael Phelps

While the Hebrew word for general fitness is כֹּשֶׁר
(here's an entry on that), the word for exercise - especially aerobic exercise and gymnastics - is הִתְעַמְּלוּת, a gerund that derives from the reflexive-intensive הִתְפַעֵל verb, לְהִתְעַמֵּל.

לַעֲשׂוֹת הִתְעַמְּלוּתis what you're most likely to hear when Israelis say "I'm exercising." It means literally, to do exercise.

People using the verb itself, however, might say:

בְּמַהֲלַךְ הַחַג וְגַם אַחֲרָיו, אֲנִי מַקְפִּיד לְהִתְעַמֵּל בְּאֹפֶן קָבוּעַ.
During the holiday and after it as well, I make sure to exercise on a regular basis.

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