Sportmaster, Russia’s largest sporting goods retailer, has launched a new winter equipment rental service. Available items include snowboards, cross-country skis, skates and field hockey equipment. For example, a Termit Fastlane snowboard with Stream bindings can be rented for 310 rubles (€4.20) per day or 5,850 rubles (€78.70) per month. Nordway Vita fitness skates cost 61 rubles per day or 1,140 rubles (€15.3) per week. Rental is available only to Russian citizens with an address and a valid residence permit and a locally issued bank card.  

Customers can order winter equipment through the retailer’s website or by phone. No deposit is required for rental, and orders can be delivered to the customer’s home address or to a pickup location, Sportmaster said.

Sportmaster began renting treadmills, exercise bikes and elliptical trainers to Russian customers in October 2022. Russian news service New Retail estimates that the launch of this rental service was a justified move, as the market was affected by sanctions and previously by the Covid-19 pandemic.

In 2021, the Russian market saw an 83 percent drop in treadmill sales and an 84 percent drop in exercise bike sales. In addition, Western sanctions led to problems importing spare parts and undermined the financial stability of Russian customers, the release said.