Verdict from 6 experts and +100 user reviews

6 reasons to buy

  • A good number of purchasers gave high marks to the Altra HIIT XT for its comfortable fit.
  • Weightlifters applauded its top-notch steadiness on the ground.
  • A lot of testers noted that the moderate price was an appealing asset of the trainer.
  • Many reviewers were amazed at how generously padded the shoe was around the ankle.
  • The wide toe box design managed to meet the needs of some testers.
  • The grip of the outsole received positive feedback from a handful of wearers.

1 reasons not to buy

  • Some testers found it too heavy and clunky for running and plyometric exercises.

Bottom line

The Altra HIIT XT is the brand’s debut into the market of training shoes. Even though some found it too bulky, the shoe still managed to deliver good performance for the majority of testers. It was able to win many consumers with its cushioned feel, excellent steadiness, grip, and affordable price.

Tip: see the best training shoes.

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Good to know

The Altra HIIT XT is the brand’s first shoe designed specifically for cross-training. Altra is well-known among the running community for its production of the ZeroDrop platform. The HIIT XT also employs this feature to promote the natural positioning of the foot.

The HIIT XT utilizes a wraparound gum rubber outsole, which extends to the lateral and medial sides of the upper. It provides support during lateral movements, as well as protection against abrasion during rope climbs.

A sticky rubber compound delivers grip and traction on various surfaces. Rubber is also a durable material that makes the shoe’s underfoot area last longer.

The EVA PowerSole platform in the Altra HIIT XT works together with the wraparound outsole to enhance lateral support and steadiness of the foot. It also employs the A-Bound for shock absorption and energy return.

Cushioning is provided by the 5 mm sculpted footbed. It can be removed if the wearer prefers a less cushioned and more grounded underfoot feel. In this case, the stack height goes down from 24 mm to 18 mm.

The shoe features Altra’s renowned ZeroDrop construction, which means that there is no “drop” or difference in the elevation of the sole unit. Thus, the foot remains in flat disposition, which promotes its natural movement.

The upper unit of the Altra HIIT XT makes use of the combination of air mesh and synthetic overlays to offer a snug and breathable fit. The air mesh also makes sure that the shoe stays dry by wicking off any moisture. The toe box and the heel counter are reinforced with a thicker synthetic material for additional support.

The collar and the tongue make use of thick padding to deliver some cushioning to the uppermost areas of the foot. They also prevent the wobbling of the foot during the exercise.

The additional eyelets near the ankle allow a lockdown fit by causing the laces to pull on the back portion of the shoe’s façade. Altra makes an attempt to provide an even more comfortable fit in the next iteration of the shoe, the HIIT XT 1.5.

How HIIT XT compares

This shoe: 79
All shoes average: 84
68 95
This shoe: $100
All shoes average: $126
$90 $200
This shoe: 11.2oz
All shoes average: 10.6oz
6.9oz 14.1oz
Nicholas Rizzo
Nicholas Rizzo

Nick is a powerlifter who believes cardio comes in the form of more heavy ass squats. Based on over 1.5 million lifts done at competitions, his PRs place him as an elite level powerlifter. His PRs have him sitting in the top 2% of bench presses (395 lbs), top 3% of squats (485 lbs) and top 6% of deadlifts (515 lbs) for his weight and age. His work has been featured on Forbes,, Elite Daily and the like. Collaborating along the way with industry leaders like Michael Yessis, Mark Rippetoe, Carlo Buzzichelli, Dave Tate, Ray Williams, and Joel Seedman.