In this guide, we’re taking a look at one of the growing trends in home gyms and answering the question should you buy an assault bike?
The only drawback of home gyms is that they take up precious space, so we have to be savvy about the equipment we buy. In this post, we are going to discuss assault bikes and outline the physical benefits you can reap from using them. This will help you to decide whether an assault bike would suit your fitness goals.
What are assault bikes and why are they so hard?
If you have never heard of an assault bike before, you would probably guess that it is some form of bike and, given the ‘assault’ part, that it delivers a gruelling workout. Well, you would be right! An assault bike is a stationary bike with an in-built fan that creates resistance. It is also commonly known as an air bike.
When in use, you cycle as normal with your legs while pumping the handlebars with your arms. This delivers a whole-body workout that immediately gets the sweat dripping. However, because your body weight is supported at all times, it provides a low impact exercise that is suitable for older people and people recovering from injury.
Used at a slower or moderate pace, it can even aid the recovery process because it enables smooth movement to encourage healing and promote blood circulation.
Assault bikes are often used as part of a HIIT session. Some people like to design a whole programme of different speeds and resistance, much like you would do in a spin class, whereas others like to keep things simple using the ’30 seconds on, 30 seconds off’ method.
This involves going full blast for 30 seconds and then taking an active recovery break at a more comfortable pace.
Looking for a decent air bike that doesn’t cost a fortune? We recommend the JTX Mission Air Bike. Take a look at our review here.
5 Reasons you need an assault bike
- Not much better for losing calories
- Incredibly tough workout
- Great cardio in hardly any time
- Can take a beating
- Great alternative to running that takes less space
What’s a good fan bike to buy?
We’ve seen a real growth in the range of assault bikes up for sale in the UK over the last couple of years and have written a guide to help you navigate some of them. See our Best UK Assault Bikes Guide for the full scoop.
You should also take a look at our JTX Mission Air Bike Review. This is a seriously beefy fan bike that can hold it’s own against the bigger brands, but costs a good bit less.
How good are assault bikes for losing weight?
Using an assault bike properly, in terms of form, is quite easy because the machine guides your movements. However, the physical effort required is high because your lower and upper body are simultaneously being given a vigorous workout.
It is essentially like doing two cardio sessions at the same time! In addition to this, because your position and the weight are constantly changing, the assault bike prevents the body from getting too comfortable with the resistance. This creates a physically demanding workout.
Does assault biking burn a lot of calories?
Yes, absolutely. The great benefit of the
to reflect this. At a regular pace, a person burns around 15 calories per minute. Pushing yourself on this machine really pays off though because you can clock numbers of around 30-40 calories – again, per minute!
It is up to you how hard you push yourself, but even a short spurt of extra effort will garner impressive numbers.
Whether you want to condense your regular cardio session or put in a full 25-minute shift, the assault bike is clearly a great way to burn through fat. The assault bike also conditions your muscles and trains them for endurance.
These machines are absolutely perfect for increasing fitness and blasting calories.
It will not help you to build bulk because it does not put sufficient weight on the muscles to create growth, but it will develop stamina in your ‘everyday muscles’. What we mean by this are the muscles you frequently use in normal life, e.g. when walking, taking the stairs etc.
It is important to work these muscles to retain a full range of movement; too much bulky muscle can reduce mobility if the muscles are only trained for growth.
Are assault bikes just for Cross-Fit?
No. Although these kinds of exercise bikes are often referred to as CrossFit bikes, you don’t even need to know what cross-fit is to get the benefits from using an assault bike. We’ve seen them used by everyone from pensioners to bodybuilders over the years and there’s absolutely no reason anyone, no matter what their sport or level of fitness, shouldn’t use one. These machines are absolutely perfect for increasing fitness and blasting calories.
What are assault bikes good for?
Anyone can use an assault bike, either as the sole focus of a workout or to warm-up before engaging in another activity. However, we are going to be straight with you, the assault bike is not the best option for people who are new to working out.
Quite simply, the workout you will get from this machine is intense and if you do not already have some degree of fitness, then it will be too much for you.
If you are someone who jogs or uses spin bikes and want to turn up the heat on your routine or if you are someone who engages in cardio regularly and wants something new to keep your workouts interesting, then the assault bike is a good option.
Finally, we would really encourage you to try an assault bike session if you are looking for a physical challenge. We can guarantee that it will be an experience like no other! And if you get hooked on it, there is a whole community of assault bike lovers who share their PBs and tips.
It is a great source of motivation for all involved.
References & Further Reading
- Physical Culture Study – The History Of The Assault Bike
- Youtube – How to do HIIT cardio using an Assault Bike
- Daily Mail Online – Assault Air exercise bike burns 80 calories minute
- Pubmed – Caloric expenditure of aerobic, resistance, or combined high-intensity interval training
- Assault Fitness Official Website