Fat Measurement Method Verified!

We’ve already discussed the fact that when you’re attempting to lose fat weight, keeping up with your body fat percentage is as important, if not more so, than just looking at your total body weight on a scale (see http://www.darrylpace.com/weight-no-longer-2/).

Also, in the blog post here, http://www.darrylpace.com/measuring-body-fat/, we discussed some methods for measuring body fat levels .

The method I’ve used for years has been the skin caliper method.  However, I’ve always been curious about its accuracy.

Back in 1997 (I think), I had my body fat percentage measured in a Bod Pod.  The calipers seemed to give me results close to what the Bod Pod did.  Still though, I wondered how the calipers compared to the “gold standard” of body fat measurement — hydrostatic weighing.

Fast forward to the present.  After searching high and low for a place where hydrostatic weighing was available to the public, I finally found one.  I got my body fat measured via the hydrostatic method one week ago (March 3, 2010).  My body fat percentage was 9% at a body weight of 222 lbs.

How did this compare with the skin calipers?  According to the calipers my body fat percentage is 9.2%.  So, the two methods seem to be very close.iStock_000008942669XSmall

There are pluses and minuses to both methods.

Concerning Hydrostatic weighing, it is not cheap.  My weighing cost me $50.  Also, as I stated in a previous blog post, you have to strip down to swimming trunks (which can be inconvenient), and it can be difficult just to find a place that provides hydrostatic weighing.

An additional minus regarding the hydrostatic weighing technique is that it is uncomfortable…or at least I found it to be.  The uncomfortable part was the feeling I got after exhaling as much air as I possibly could while under water.  It just didn’t feel good.

The primary plus of the water weighing method is its accuracy.  It is considered THE most accurate method for measuring body fat for a live human being (a cadaver can be more definitively measured by chemical analysis where the body is dissolved in a chemical solution).

In addition to being accurate, the facility that provides the hydrostatic weighing service may provide additional information in their analysis of your body.  For example, along with my body fat percentage, they gave me personalized calorie estimates for maintaining my weight (3552 calories per day), losing 1 or 2 pounds per week (3052 and 2552 calories/day, respectively), or gaining 1 or 2 pounds per week (4052 and 4552 calories).  They also provided personalized estimated calorie expenditures for various activities (basketball, aerobics, swimming, etc.), and a chart of body fat recommendations and categories for various age groups.

Of course, you could just get a pair of skin calipers for around $7.  In the privacy of your own home, you could measure your body fat fairly accurately (within 2 – 4% of a hydrostatic weighing) time and time again, until the calipers wear out.  You might not get the extra informational goodies (maintenance calorie level, etc.) when you take a measurement, but who cares.  It’s your body fat percentage you’re interested in, not the other stuff.

Darryl

Be Sociable, Share!

One Response to “Fat Measurement Method Verified!”


  1. Hi Darryl,

    Thank you for providing such concrete fitness measuring tools. Indeed in every marriage relationship, as you surely know, your vitality and longevity, you care about because of the sweet love of your spouse, right? Using all of these tools is so important for truly the love lifetime of a marriage?

    Mazel tov!

    Happy Dating and Relationships,

    April Braswell

    http://www.aprilbraswell.com

    Dating Expert and Online Dating Coach


Product Review Articles

Matt Furey’s Combat Conditioning – Review | May 13, 2015 |

A few years back a guy told me about Combat Conditioning.  Frankly, I was skeptical.  I was really into just (...)

Adding Muscle with Deadlifts | November 7, 2010 |

Want to build muscle? Then stick with the basics, i.e. the basic exercises — squats, deadlifts, bench press, overhead (...)

Fat Measurement Method Verified! | March 16, 2010 |

We’ve already discussed the fact that when you’re attempting to lose fat weight, keeping up with your body fat percentage (...)

Pre-Review: Matt Furey’s Combat Conditioning | December 31, 2009 |

Some time ago, darrylpace.com reader, Steve Chambers, asked me my opinion of the “Combat Conditioning” (CC) program by Matt Furey.  (...)

Measuring Body Fat | September 30, 2009 |

In a previous blog post, I mentioned that body weight is made up of a lot more than fat, and (...)


Fitness Archive

020117-Rest Day | February 1, 2017 |

Today was a rest day.  The only exercise I did was running beside my daughter while she did sprints. Rest (...)

013117-Choose to Be Built | January 31, 2017 |

Robert Kiyosaki created an audio series called, “Choose to be Rich.”  This is a site dedicated to fitness.  So we’re (...)

013017 | January 30, 2017 |

Today I did the following: Chin-ups Body weight (bw) x 10 (bw + 10 lbs) x 10 (this means I (...)


Health

Body Transformation Preliminaries — Measuring Your Body Fat Level | January 20, 2013 |

Checking Body Fat One of the habits that people who successfully lose fat and keep it off have in common (...)

Body Transformation Preliminaries — Weighing Yourself | January 15, 2013 |

  How to Accurately Weigh Yourself People that are successful in losing weight and keeping it off weigh themselves (...)

Starting a Body Transformation | January 14, 2013 |

So you want to make your body over for 2013 and beyond?  Take the first step toward doing that today! (...)


Success

Dream. Act. Achieve. | October 6, 2015 |

In one of his audio programs, motivational speaker Brian Tracy asked this question: “What would you do if you KNEW (...)

Body Transformation Preliminaries — Measuring Your Body Fat Level | January 20, 2013 |

Checking Body Fat One of the habits that people who successfully lose fat and keep it off have in common (...)

Keeping Fat Off Permanently! | August 13, 2012 |

After a person loses some body fat, how can that person keep the fat off PERMANENTLY?  Well, after you’ve lost (...)

Suscribe RSS