The AFG Sport 5.5AE is a lighter elliptical trainer than the AFG Sport 5.9AE we previously reviewed. This model does not have an inclination system or Bluetooth connectivity, unlike the 5.9AE model.
Nonetheless, it essentially has the same preset program foundation as a simple model and has far more functions.
The AFG Sport 5.5AE is a mid-range elliptical trainer that may be used at home.
It has a solid frame, a 10-level eddy current resistance system, and a console with various training options. It’s a wonderful machine for mid-to high-intensity cardio exercises, as well as interval-based training.
It’s perfect for reducing weight, toning muscles, developing or restoring stamina, and interval-based workouts.
It isn’t the cheapest machine on the market, but it is significantly less expensive than a light commercial one.
Construction and Frame
The Schwinn 430’s frame structure is similar to the AFG Sport 5.5AE.
Of course, the machine’s primary structural frame is composed of steel. Its pedals and front crank mechanism have a maximum user weight capacity of 275 lbs (125 kg), which isn’t terrible for a household machine.
There are a few non-metallic pieces in the machine as well.
The front covers of the motor, flywheel and resistance system, the rear base cover, the console case, and the pedals are among them.
Even though the upper sections of the pedals are constructed of ABS, they should endure people weighing up to 275 lbs (125 kg) without issue.
All of the metal pieces in the frame structure of the machine are double-coated with abrasion- and corrosion-resistant gray paint finish.
This item comes in only one color: gray.
The entire machine is huge when fully completed.
It is around 74″ (188 cm) in length and 24″ (61 cm) in width. For this reason, it is advised that a usage area of at least 110″ x 60″ be assigned to it (280 x 152 cm).
It’s also a bit of a hulk. Its net weight is around 172 lbs (78 kg); therefore, transport and assembly will almost certainly require two persons.
On the other side, all of this weight gives the unit exceptional stability. Even if you indulge in strenuous aerobic activity, you can be assured that it will not rock or tip over.
On top of that, the machine’s center base and rear base also include adjustable levelers with rubber pads, allowing you to fully steady the unit on any floor.
However, it is advised to be placed and used on a rubberized surface because of its weight.
Despite its weight, relocating the unit after it is set up should not be too difficult.
It has transport wheels on its front base, making it easier to move. You will only be moving 1/3 of the machine’s total weight if you use the front wheels to move it.
Two sets of handlebars are included with this AFG Sport elliptical trainer.
One is fixed and connects to the front mast directly. Its grips are equipped with stainless steel pulse sensors, allowing the console to track your pulse while you exercise.
The other handlebars are attached to the pedal base and are moveable. For this reason, they will continue to travel as long as you pedal; they cannot be stopped.
For maximum comfort, they include long, curved grips with a coating of rubber-foam substance.
High-quality ball bearings are used in the machine’s primary joints.
For this reason, the main arms and pedals move smoothly, and squeaking is less common, especially if the joints are lubricated during construction.
Stride Length and Step-up Height
Like the AFG Sport 5.7AE, this elliptical trainer type does not include an inclination mechanism.
In comparison to the 5.7AE, its stride is a little shorter. It’s around 18″ (46 cm) long, which means it should be able to comfortably fit people up to 6’2″ (188 cm), creating a pleasurable stride and healthy leg extension.
Taller people can also use the machine, but they will have to exercise with a stride length that is less than their maximal range of motion.
The stride length of the machine appears to be non-adjustable.
The machine’s actual Q-factor (the distance between the pedals) is unknown.
They are, nevertheless, rather close together, enabling natural foot placement during exercise and reducing lateral joint stress.
Despite having a front-drive mechanism, the machine’s elliptical route is horizontal.
The ProForm Endurance 920 E, for example, does not have any cushioning or articulation in the pedals.
Extra pedal cushioning isn’t essential, though, because most elliptical trainers with this structured style, like this AFG elliptical, deliver a relatively low-impact workout.
The pedals are rather spacious, and they can suit a wide range of sports shoes.
Their surface is ribbed for better adhesion. They also include a front and side border to keep your feet from sliding around throughout your activity.
The pedals are approximately 10″ above the floor level at their lowest position.
However, their highest point is around 15″ above sea level (38 cm). However, it is advised that you operate the machine in a room with a ceiling at least 20″ (51 cm) higher than your height.
Resistance and Drive System
The AFG Sport 5.5AE is a front-drive elliptical trainer with a flywheel weight of 14.3 (6.5 kg).
This is a mid-range steel flywheel with most of its weight distributed around the circumference.
For this reason, the pedaling action is quite smooth, and the momentum is pretty steady.
In case you were wondering, the flywheel allows you to cycle backward.
Of course, you get the same resistance when cycling backward. In addition, the console continues to track your exercise stats depending on the flywheel’s revolutions.
This elliptical machine’s internal transmission is belt-driven.
The machine is equipped with a long-lasting rubber belt and is virtually entirely quiet when used. In addition, there is no need to lubricate the transmission. You won’t have to bother opening the drive system case until significant internal damage happens for various reasons.
This Advanced Fitness Group elliptical trainer includes a motorized magnetic (eddy current) resistance mechanism.
However, its resistance system consists of a small internal motor and a magnetic brake, and the machine must be attached to a power source.
The machine comes with a power cable with a 3-prong connection common in the United States.
The power cord connector is located right above the machine’s front base.
The resistance control can only be done from the console because the machine’s resistance mechanism is motorized.
There are ten different resistance levels to choose from. The console has progressive adjustment settings and quick-selection resistance controls ranging from 1 to 10.
Additionally, because the resistance system is automated, some training plans automatically modify the machine’s intensity while in use.
A configurable console with an LED-based display is included with the AFG 5.5AE elliptical trainer.
It keeps track of all the major training data, including time, distance, pace, calories, pulse, and resistance level.
The distance is shown in miles, while the speed is represented in miles per hour.
These exercise metrics do not have a metric choice. On top of that, the console can only monitor your heart rate using sensors built into the stationary handlebars.
It’s incompatible with ANT+ and Polar HR transmitters.
There is no Bluetooth connectivity on the console machine, and it is not compatible with any online fitness applications.
It does, however, have five major workout plans, some of which have various degrees of difficulty or variants.
The first is the Manual program, which allows you to exercise freely while manually changing the resistance as needed during your workout.
The Interval Program is the second program. The resistance adjusts, and the portions repeat 30 seconds and 90 seconds for this program.
There are ten degrees of difficulty in this software.
The third program is a weight-loss regimen that focuses on fat loss.
It’s essentially an interval program; however, the parts are 60 seconds apart.
There are ten different degrees of difficulty in this game.
Target – Distance and Target – Calories are the fourth and fifth programs.
You may set distance goals ranging from one mile to a complete marathon. You can pick between 100 and 900 calories as your calorie goal.
Several features are also included in the console.
To begin with, it features its built-in sound system, which comprises two tiny speakers at the unit’s base.
On the top of the machine, there is an audio jack and an earplug connector. For this reason, you may connect your phone, tablet, or MP3 player to the console and listen to music via the built-in speakers.
There is also a little cooling fan provided. It is situated just over the speakers. It only has two-speed settings: On and Off. Finally, a tablet container is located above the console’s LED display.
While exercising, you may set your phone or tablet here to watch your favorite streams.
The machine, however, lacks a USB charging connector and is unable to interface with your tablet.
The machine’s drive and resistance parts are already constructed, with the ABS shrouds covering them and connecting them to the front base frame.
The majority of the other elements, however, must be assembled. As a general rule, join the front base and rail assembly to the front half of the frame first, then connect the console mast, pedals, moving arms, and console.
It might take up to two hours to complete this task. The handbook does, however, include extremely clear assembly directions, as well as all of the necessary equipment.
It is advised that the machine’s rails be kept clean for maintenance purposes; any little items or textile fibers placed on them might harm the wheels.
The unit’s joints may need to be lubricated regularly. Aside from that, you should check the machine for any loose or broken parts regularly.