T Nation

Height, weight, waist, and wrist measurements. Accurate for BF % ?

I have seen some websites using this to try and determine BF%. How accurate is this method?

Very inaccurate. Based on population averages. If it were based on a population of poeple like you, then it would be more accurate.

Agreed, but wouldn’t it, for the same person, be a pretty good estimate of change over time?

how accurate are those bioelectrical impedence scales that you can by in the stores?

If you put scales in the subject line of search engine there a quite a few threads on BF scales.

If you’re talking about skinfold caliper measurements over time, then yes that would be true. However, you can increase your waist measurement while decreasing body fat by thickening of the abdominal wall and mass gains on the abs and spinal erectors. Wrist and height will stay the same.

What do you mean people like me? You don’t know anything about me.

You just made Brider’s point chief, those are based on averages of people that arent you, by people who dont know you. So you could have a 36 inch waist and a 6 pack, but I would bet that the site would put you as a chubbster.

I believe Brider was referring to the fact that if all the measurement tables were based on people with the same body type, height, bone structure, and genetic features “like you”, than they would be accurate…for you and people “like you” or with your body type only…but since they are based on a typical cross section of the population…trainers and nontrainers alike as well as people of differing body types…then they are a guesstament at best.

Sorry brider, dumbass me read this incorrectly. thanks antny16 for the correction.

No problem. Misunderstandings happen.

I’ll go against the grain and say that it’s not too bad compared to skinfold. I have used the chart in the back of “The Zone Diet” (also available on their web page and felt it to be consistent with a professionaly done 7 point caliper assessment. Yes, you can have a thick, muscular trunk, but somehow I’ve always felt it was within +/- 2-3%. The electric scales have never worked for me, they would usually show me 7-10 % higher than the tape measure method.