Today, we’re reviewing the assault runner elite treadmill. This is a manual slat belt treadmill. So it does not require electricity. It has unlimited speed. It will go as fast as you do. And it is designed for serious athletes, coaches, and athletic facilities.
We’re going to dive into all the features and specs of the assault runner elite review, as well as cover a little about running mechanics and how this helps facilitate a good stride.
Let’s take a closer look.
Assault Runner Elite: Recommended for?
We recommend it to like serious runners, coaches, fitness facilities and athletic trainers that are looking for something high-end to challenge and improve their athletic performance.
Assault Runner Elite: We Don’t Recommend it to?
Slat belt treadmill for home
|Running surface:||17” wide and 65” long|
|Step-Up Height:||12.5” high|
|Footprint:||70” L x 32” W x 64” H|
|Max user weight:||400 lbs|
|Console:||LCD Console with both Bluetooth and ANT+|
|Frame:||Powder-coated steel frame|
|Belt:||Shock-absorbing slat belt that floats atop 100 ball bearings|
|Display:||Time, Calories, Distance, Speed, Watts, Pace & Heart Rate|
|Warranty:||10-year warranty on Frame|
Lifetime warranty on belt
3-year warranty for Non-Wear Parts
1-year warranty on Parts & Labor
But let’s take a closer look at how it’s constructed and the overall design.
Let’s dive in and take a look at the construction of the assault runner elite treadmill.
As I mentioned, this does have a curved belt. You can kind of see that deck is gently curved and there are a couple of different reasons for that. We’ll dive into that later. But it changes the design of the treadmill itself.
This is a slat belt treadmill. That means that rather than have a single belt that slides along the top of the deck, you have these individual slats that are floating on top of 100 ball bearings that run along the sides of that deck. It also has 12 roller guides to keep it in alignment.
It’s very smooth as you run. It does not go in both directions. So I can’t push it backwards. It’s only going to go forward to allow you to run in a forward position.
They are wider than usual. These side rails are almost 6 inches wide and they’ve got the nice texture. I find on this machine that I have to use the side rails and the handrails to use the machine correctly. This isn’t just you stand on the belt and then you get off.
You’ll find that when you’re doing intervals or you’ve got your speed up, sometimes you have to jump onto those side rails just to let that belt slow down. Or maybe you need to take a breath. So having nice wide side rails makes a difference.
Now, the width of the slats is a little narrower than you’re going to find on a traditional treadmill.
On a traditional treadmill, like a folding normal one that you would have at home. Kind of mid-range is roughly 20 inches wide and usually about like 60 inches long. This particular one is 17 inches wide. It’s a little narrower, so you have considerably more length, which is nice, but you do have to pay attention.
As I mentioned earlier, this is not the kind of treadmill where you just get on and zone out.
You’ve got to make sure that you are centred on that belt and you’re not wandering side to side. They say you go where you look. So even if you look to the side, you might find that you travel that way just a little.
And if your foot comes across that side rail, it’s going to kind of slow you down, maybe trip you up a bit. So you do have to pay attention. And it is slightly narrower. But once again, that helps facilitate good running mechanics.
You’re not wandering all over the place. It keeps your hips in alignment and keeps you moving forward in that sagittal plane.
So the uprights are slightly curved back, which because of the nature of the design, you’re going to find that you kind of position yourself right in between those uprights and you’re going to use them all the time.
That’s the reason it’s designed kind of like this with a bit of a floating.
The machine itself weighs about 270 pounds, pretty heavy. It does have a grab bar back here.
You’ve got nice, good wheels there at the front, so you can roll it if you need to. And it also has these adjustable levelling feet down on the base so that when you put it on your floor, you can adjust the feet, kind of screw them up or down just a little so that the deck doesn’t rock.
So you’ve got good stability underneath.
There’s no motor in this machine. It’s all manual power, which means that you don’t have to plug it in. And that’s one of the reasons that this is very popular for garage gyms, and training facilities because you can put it anywhere and run on it.
And you don’t have to worry about proximity to a plug or electricity or anything like that. The console is battery-powered, so you don’t have to plug it in, which is nice.
The step-up height, it’s a little higher than a traditional treadmill at the lowest point. It’s about 12.5 inches. This is going to require more joint mobility to get on than a standard treadmill. But it’s designed for serious athletes for whom hopefully joint mobility isn’t as much of an issue.
It does have a lifetime warranty on the belt. These belts are very durable. They’re rubberized. They’re flat on the top and they sit down on those ball bearings. But this belt can withstand hundreds of thousands of miles of distance.
The frame and the uprights are all solid steel and then coated to be rust-resistant.
The deck comes fully preassembled, which is nice. You don’t have to attach the slats or worry about any of that. All you have to do is attach the uprights and then the console display and attach the console itself to the kind of plate on the back.
The biggest challenge is just to make sure that you don’t pinch the wires when you’re attaching things. The one thing that’s nice about this, is all the screws were machine drilled. So it was really easy to attach.
This was very clean in the way that it was all drilled out and ready to be assembled. And we always recommend to people simply because you need somebody to hold the upright while the other person attaches things and screws it tight. But it’s certainly not technically difficult.
Assault does cover this with a lifetime warranty on the belt, as I mentioned.
You also get 10 years on the frame and 1 year for parts and labour.
Here you can see the console and it looks relatively simple, but it has some pretty good functionality in it. This console reminds me a little of the concept2 PM 5, simply because you look at it and think, oh, it’s just a simple digital display, but then it has lots of different features that you can dive into and access.
Just to look real quick at your metrics, you do have time and it’s elapsed time. And then it will keep track of your calories.
You have distance, speed, watts and pace. And then down here it will sync with Bluetooth.
You can use a Garmin device or a Bluetooth device, and your heart rate will show up right there down at the bottom.
For the interval programs, if I want to run an interval program, you have a standard Tabata program that you can run, which is your 20 seconds of work, and 10 seconds of rest. You can do an inverted Tabata where it’s 10 seconds of work with 20 seconds of rest or you have a custom option.
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The console is UV-resistant. So it’s protected from high sun rays and stuff like that. You can set it by a window or maybe a garage door or whatever, and you’ll still be able to see it. And the backlit screen does help these metrics.
Even though they’re just digital, they’re really easy to see. Even if I move around, I find that I can see all the different metrics pretty easy. You have to kind of storage pockets. They’ve got a nice water bottle holder right there, a little of a silicone liner so that it doesn’t rattle around too much.
I could drop keys in there or phone, and then you just kind of have that stability from the upright.
It doesn’t move around a lot when you’re running. It feels stable. You have just a little lip right here. If I had a phone, I could set it there or maybe a timer or something. If you had something really small that you wanted to set there, you could do that as well.
It’s just kind of a minimalist design, but it’s very clean and easy to use. Not a lot of clutter. And once you get started, it responds to you very easily.
One thing that I really like about this machine is that it keeps track of your pace in real time. So, as I mentioned earlier, rather than just set a 7-mile-an-hour pace and you have to work to keep up when you’re doing sprints, it’ll record that pace for you.
A few of the benefits that you get, specifically from using a slight belt treadmill. So rather than the treadmill setting the speed and you work to keep up with it on a manual treadmill, you set the speed.
So you are completely in control of the experience. But it requires a lot more energy on your part. As a consequence, a workout on a manual treadmill like the runner early is going to generate burn a lot more calories than if you were on a manual or on an electric treadmill sort of thing. It also is a lower impact than running outdoors.
So even though it’s been designed to kind of mimic an outdoor stride, an outdoor environment where you can train for an outdoor event, still using a treadmill, it absorbs some of that impact so that it’s much better than concrete or asphalt or something like that.
Those rubberized slats do absorb just a little bit of impact. And in the belt is a little shock absorbent. You have unlimited speed potential.
The other thing that I like about this machine is rather than the treadmill, just say it’s running 7 miles an hour and you’re running 7 miles an hour. It responds in real-time to your pace.
So when you kick it up there, it might show us some 5-piece for a few seconds while you generate a lot of speed. And then in real-time, it will slow down when you do. So the speed is very, very precise to exactly the pace that you’re holding in real-time.
It also facilitates good running mechanics. Because the belt is curved in this way, you can’t really feel the strike too much because you’ll end up at the back of the belt and you’ll run out of momentum. You can run more on a 4-foot strike, if you’re doing some sprints or intervals or something like that. But it takes a little more energy.
So let’s just take a closer look at some of the features that facilitate good running mechanics on the run early.
The reason that athletes will use a curved manual treadmill is that you are completely in control of the speed. But the treadmill requires you to kind of hit that sweet spot with a midfoot strike.
If you are sprinting or doing like intervals, you’re going to find that you move farther up on the belt and you’re going to have more of a total of like a 4-foot strike rate. So you got a little more plant or flexion going.
You’re engaging that gastrocnemius and soleus. The Achilles is fired up because you’re just really maximizing that energy output and increasing your speed.
A lot of times when you’re running on a treadmill, it’s easy just kind of wander and you might find that you kind of fall into a heel strike position on this treadmill. You really can’t, because if I come back here in heel strike, it slows the belt all the way down like it takes too much effort. I’m losing too much energy.
So I have to stand right here between the uprights with a nice midfoot strike. It reduces the activation of the tibial S.A. So I reduce my incidence of shin splints. And it just kind of moderate’s that energy so that I am responding to ground forces moving that belt along.
I have a nice stride, not too much forward stride, not too much kickback. Your whole foot has to connect to the belt and then you push off with that big toe.
This is a really impressive machine. It’s designed for a very specific type of use and it performs well for what it’s designed for.
I appreciate the fact that Assault Fitness Treadmill is very quiet compared to other treadmills that you might use. It does not sound like train tracks when you’re running on it.
The slats do absorb just a bit of impact. So even though this isn’t cushioned as you might find on another treadmill, where it has a little of flexibility in the deck, the slats themselves are rubberized. And so you do have cushioning, which I like a lot.
It facilitates good running mechanics, which is something that a lot of us don’t think about a lot of the time.
But if you are a serious athlete, it makes all the difference in the world. And it has been designed specifically for people who want to improve their running mechanics, want to improve their form, want to improve their speed, or are looking for something that just takes that challenge up a notch, and has unlimited speed potential.
We recommend this for coaches, athletes, athletic facilities and other high-end niche gyms.
Assault Runner elite review
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