What's freylach, builds muscle tone, and has people humming oy vey iz mir to the tune of "By Mir Bist Du Sheyn"? SHVITZ! My Yiddisheh Workout, that's what! This 30-minute exercise videotape, produced entirely in Yiddish (with English subtitles), is a follow-along exercise routine that the viewer can do at home without special equipment.

The half-hour workout sequence is a series of simple exercises for strengthening and toning muscles, all set to klezmer music and Yiddish songs. The music mix is an eclectic variety of styles, from an authentic 1940's recording of Sidor Belarsky to Janice Rubin's Yiddish music with a down-home Texas feel (not quite der alter heym, but a whole lot of fun). Work up a sweat with singer Rhoda Bernard and the Klezamir klezmer orchestra's rendition of "The Miami Beach Rhumba", or The Casco Bay Tummlers doing a four-voice bluesy version of "Abi Gezunt" (as long as you've got your health!...). Michael Spudic and his klezmer accordion accompany exercises with some "original" selections like "My Yiddisheh Workout" (better known as "My Yiddisheh Mama"!).

SHVITZ! is the brainchild of several committed young Yiddishists from The Workmen's Circle Branch 105 in New York City. "I made this tape for Yiddishists like myself. There are quite a lot of us out there. If people think the idea is funny because it's in Yiddish, let it be funny. They can laugh their way to good health!" says producer Roland (Ruvn) Millman, himself a gym junkie.

Stephen Dowling, manager of the Jewish Book Center of The Workmen's Circle, admits that many of his customers purchase the tape as a gag gift. "Most people don't really think there's a serious exercise video inside," he says, pointing at the eye-catching purple and yellow video box. The title SHVITZ!, in Yiddish and English, surrounds a well-toned man in a fedora and ear locks, pumping up with a dumbbell emblazoned with the Star of David.

But serious exercise it is. The routine, designed by a professional workout trainer, starts with pre-exercise warm-up stretches and tips for novices. Three Yiddish actors, most notably veteran actress of the Yiddish stage Shifra Lerer, explain and demonstrate exercises for arms, legs, and abdomen. Ms. Lerer illustrates variations for beginners and seniors, including seated versions of the floor exercises. Advanced exercise buffs can follow Yekhiel Geller-Katz and Betty Silberman's demonstrations of the more strenuous workout.

As an added bonus, a Yiddish-English terminology list is available for Yiddish workout queries. Bet you didn't know how to say push-up (arof-shtup), leg stretch (fus-oyftsi), or shoulder shrug (aksl-kvetsh) in Yiddish!

SHVITZ! My Yiddisheh Workout, is the one and only exercise video in Yiddish. So, nu, why are you shlepping to the gym? Shvitz at home, in Yiddish!

SHVITZ! is available from The Workmen's Circle Book Center, 45 Sholem Aleichem Place (East 33rd Street), New York NY 10016, (212) 889-6800/(800) 922-2558 ext. 285. E-mail: