On the Run Races

Rent an Olympian’s Skin on eBay

Have you ever wanted a truly unique advertising location? How about an Olympian’s skin? You can do that with this eBay auction going on now!

It is amazing the different ways that people find to make money in this technologically advanced day! Here is a unique opportunity for both the athlete and the winner of the advertising opportunity.

Rent an Olympian’s Skin for Advertising

eBay Link

olympian's skin

Nick Symmonds is the reigning 800 meter US champion and is a 2008 and 2012 Olympian. He is also an athlete that has been speaking out against the way the system is constructed when it comes to how athletes are paid and sponsorships treated (under the USATF/USOC rules). For example, the USATF signs huge, long-term deals with companies like Nike for advertising but that money does not always make its way down to the athletes that are trained within the programs.

As part of that, he is again auctioning off his arm (9 square inches of his right shoulder, to be exact) for someone to have a temporary tattoo on it for advertising purposes. Here is what he says in the auction details:

I am auctioning off 9 square inches of skin on my right shoulder as advertising space during the 2016 Outdoor Track and Field season.

Here is my tentative 2016 competition schedule (subject to change):

May 14: Shanghai DL (Shanghai, China) 800m

May 18: World Challenge Meeting (Beijing, China) 800m

June 12: Portland Track Festival (Portland, OR) 1500m

June 18: Brooks Running PR Invite (Seattle, WA) 600m

July 1-4: USA Olympic Trials (Eugene, OR) 800m

Aug 12-15: 2016 Olympic Games (Rio de Janiero, Brazil) 800m

To be clear, I have not yet been selected to be a member of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team. The U.S. Olympic Track and Field team is scheduled to be selected July 1-10, 2016.

However, I am already a two time Olympian (Beijing, London) and am currently the defending USA Champion at 800m. I also am healthy and in fantastic shape; all of my workouts for this season can be viewed on my Sweat Mobile account (available as a free app for download on iOS and Android).

The winner of this auction is free to use the 9 square inches of advertising space how they choose, but the advertisement must take the form of a logo, website URL, and/or social media username. The advertisement will be adhered to my shoulder as a temporary tattoo.

However, because of those same USOC and USATF rules, he also says this:

Due to antiquated rules, during all IAAF, USOC, and IOC governed competitions, I will be forced to tape over all forms of advertising on my body except the logos of my apparel and equipment manufacturers. Though these absurd rules certainly diminish an investment in an athlete, please know that I will put in extra effort to ensure that the winner of this auction realizes a fantastic return on investment.

The bidding is currently at $10,400 and the eBay auction ends tomorrow. It has even attracted the attention of (fast) marathoner and T-Mobile owner John Legere.


It is certainly an innovative idea! It does seem like you could get quite a bit of advertising attention from this, even before he applies the temporary tattoo! This auction has been written up in many media outlets and will certainly receive additional attention after the auction is over.

So, who is going to rent Nick’s skin for an ad? 🙂

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About the author


Charlie has been an avid traveler and runner for many years. He has run in marathons around the world for less than it would cost to travel to the next town - all as a result of collecting and using miles and points. Over the years, he has flown hundreds of thousands of miles and collected millions of miles and points.
Now he uses this experience and knowledge to help others through Running with Miles.