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Old 05-14-2004, 12:44 PM   #1
Kevin Anderson
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I would like to get a better idea what my body fat percentage is and was wondering if these scales that also measure BF% really work. I've heard they may not give the correct percentage but as long as I can track changes it should suffice. Also, I've started gaining a bit of weight and would like to make sure it isn't fat. I don't think it is because my waist size has stayed the same but who knows.
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Old 05-14-2004, 01:35 PM   #2
Sebastian
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You might want to get some calipers and get someone to do it for you once a week or every two weeks or whatever. It may not be the most accurate way to do it, but should give you a relative idea of how you are doing from week to week.

You could even take a poloroid of yourself every couple weeks and just compare how you look.
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Old 05-14-2004, 01:55 PM   #3
John Frazer
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I had one of those scales until last year -- it died for some reason, not a battery problem and I didn't bother to mess with it.

My wife just bought another one, though, and I wonder about accuracy. The old one usually showed me at about 18-20% fat until it went belly up last year -- possible but always seemed kind of high for my build. The new one shows me at 13-15%, which is exactly where I'd come out from several web calculators based on height/weight/waist/wrist measurements and/or skinfold guesstimates.

So -- fun, maybe, essential NO. Also don't get hung up on small changes because I measured 15% at 10:30 last night, 13% at 6:00 this morning...
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Old 05-15-2004, 05:30 AM   #4
Larry Lindenman
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I have a small digital caliper (FatTrack II). You measure three sites (tri, stomach and thigh) and it caculates BF. I don't beleive it's the most accurate way to measure BF, but you get a very good idea of your progress. For me my tri and thigh measurements are always very low (1 to 3 mm). The stomach is where I retain fat, so all I have to do is take a stomach skinfold measurement to track my progress.
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Old 05-16-2004, 02:38 PM   #5
Graeme Cunningham
 
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It makes me wonder when someone states there BF is 6% how they get this number,surely the only accurate way is during autopsy
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Old 05-17-2004, 04:41 AM   #6
Sebastian
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I think the underwater weighing is a pretty accurate measure as well. I did it once a few years ago. It is kinda expensive, it cost me ~$100. I was in the best shape of my life and just had to know. FYI I was a little less than 5% with fairly good strength for me which is very very very hard for me to maintain so I am a little plumper now, of course.
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Old 05-17-2004, 10:19 AM   #7
Steve Shafley
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I've always felt it best to use calipers and keep records.

Take ~3 pinches on locations that matter to you. For me it'd be above the hip bone, the middle of the pectoral, and probably a mid-triceps or mid-thigh position, and track those numbers. Downward trends indicate a loss of bodyfat, upward trends indicate a gain of bodyfat. It is important to take regular measurements, if only to get a feel for doing it.

Steve
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Old 05-18-2004, 07:18 AM   #8
Kevin Anderson
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I will look into the calipers. I had this done once when I was in college. It seems like a logical way to track relative changes and get an idea of movements. I don't really care what the actual percentage is. Thanks for all the help.
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