Would You Do Squats for a Free Subway Ticket?
To whip up Olympic cheer and promote physical fitness, Moscow officials installed a subway ticket machine at Vystavochnaya station that doubles as a personal trainer. The scheme? Do 30 squats in two minutes, and the machine will spit out a free metro ticket.
“We wanted to show that the Olympic Games is not just an international competition that people watch on TV, but that it is also about getting everyone involved in a sport lifestyle,” said Alexander Zhukov, Russia’s Olympic Committee president.
A ride on the Moscow metro costs 30 rubles (about $0.93), so each squat counts for one ruble. (If the same rate existed in New York City, commuters would have to do 80 squats! Ouch.) However, it’s all or nothing. If riders don’t finish in two minutes, they have to pay full price—and then walk to the train with wobbly legs of shame.
The machine was removed earlier this month, but Russia’s Olympic Committee may be offering more fun exercises soon. They plan to convert some public bus handles into exercise bands, while also introducing bicycles that can charge your phone. (If you can’t make the trip to Russia, you can always attach this doodad to your bike to charge your phone.)