Commuters sometimes complain when they arrive at the train station and realize they have run out of rides on their metro card. Their groans may take a different form this week, however, as riders will be offered the opportunity to do exercises for tickets.
A vending machine that will sell single tickets for squats instead of money will be installed in western Moscow as part of the government's attempt to promote a healthy lifestyle ahead of the Sochi Olympics in February, an announcement on the Russian Olympic Committee's website said Friday.
The machine will be planted at Vystavochnaya station on the Filyovskaya line and will sell one ticket in exchange for 30 knee bends instead of 30 rubles ($0.9) for a one-way trip.
"A special device will count the squats using modern technologies," the Olympic Committee's announcement said, without elaborating.
The opening ceremony will be hosted by the committee's chief, Alexander Zhukov, and Olympic champion gymnasts Alexei Nemov and Yelena Zamolodchikova, who will probably look less ridiculous than most Muscovites doing squats at a metro station.
More similar machines are planned for other metro stations in the future, though it is not yet clear when and where they will be installed.