BMI to balance: DIY fitness tests you can do at home

Published on: 28 May 2022, 13:30 pm IST
You can easily do these fitness tests at home to keep a check on your weight, balance and endurance for a healthier lifestyle.
Dr Mithila Pawar(PT)
Testing your fitness levels every once in a while is essential. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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The trend seems to be changing! A lot of people are becoming more aware about their own health and fitness, enrolling for online fitness session and apps for exercise and diet. Do we need to spend a lot of money to get into these lifestyle changes to remain fit every time? Or can simple fitness assessment tests help you guide where you stand? Let us have a look at basic fitness tests which can be easily done at home.

Fitness tests you can do at home

1. Obesity

Weight: This is the ideal way to check your weight is early in the morning on an empty stomach before you have your breakfast. The weight can be then co-related to your height to know whether it’s in the normal range or higher/lesser.

Waist-hip ratio: This helps you with obesity assessment, whether you are pear-shaped or apple-shaped. The measurement needs to be taken at waist (narrowest part) and hips (widest part over buttocks) and take a ratio of waist: hips. Waist hip ratio should be less than 1.00 for males and less than 0.85 for females.

BMI: It is known as the body mass index. It is calculated by considering height in meters and weight. Weight/(height in meters)2. The normal range for BMI for Indians is 18.5-22.9.

BMI is a commonly used obesity indicator. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

2. Cardiorespiratory

Six-minute walk test: This is a walking test which helps you gauge your cardiorespiratory capacity, predominantly for your routine or daily activities. Nowadays it is very commonly asked for by doctors post Covid-19 recovery. Resting HR, RR and BP is measured prior to test and then immediately post a 6-minute walk. The person is supposed to walk for 6 minutes and then count the distance covered in meters. The normative value for healthy subjects is generally 400-700 meters.

Walking can help in gauging your fitness levels. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Balance

Functional Reach Test: It is a clinical fitness test used to assess the dynamic balance of a person in simple tasks. For example, reaching out for a flask at a distance, catching a ball, etc.

Place a measuring tape on the wall and stand touching the start of the tape with one hand’S shoulder at 90 degree. Higher the value, lesser the chances of fall and the dynamic balance is considered good.

4. Endurance

Endurance testing: This can be done by various exercises depending on which muscle group you wish to target.

Lower body squats and lunges: Ideally, 12-15 reps of squats and lunges can be considered normal if you are exercising for the first time. Or calculate how many you can do in 60 seconds before you get fatigued.

Try squatting! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Upper body: Pushups can be done full or half on knees until you get fatigued.

Core strength: Plank can be used to check or measure core strength. Maintain the position until you get fatigued.

For endurance testing, the baseline measures can be considered and as you start exercising, these will go on improving in time. Even the number of repetitions can indicate an increase in your endurance.

So why wait when you can do your fitness tests so easily yourself?

Dr Mithila Pawar(PT)

Dr Mithila Pawar(PT), Executive Physiotherapist, Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Mumbai (Malad)

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