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Chair Sit and Reach Test

The Chair Sit and Reach Test is a modified version of the traditional sit and reach flexibility test. It is specifically designed to assess the functional fitness of seniors as part of the Senior Fitness Test Protocol.

Purpose

The purpose of this test is to measure lower body flexibility in seniors.

Equipment Required

To conduct the Chair Sit and Reach Test, you will need the following equipment:

  • Ruler
  • Straight back or folding chair (about 17 inches/44 cm high)

Procedure

  1. The subject sits on the edge of a chair, ensuring that one foot remains flat on the floor.
  2. The other leg is extended forward with the knee straight, heel on the floor, and ankle bent at 90°.
  3. Place one hand on top of the other, ensuring that the tips of the middle fingers are even.
  4. Instruct the subject to inhale, and as they exhale, reach forward towards their toes by bending at the hip.
  5. Emphasize the importance of keeping the back straight, head up, and avoiding bouncing or quick movements.
  6. Advise the subject to never stretch to the point of pain.
  7. Instruct the subject to hold the reach for 2 seconds.
  8. Measure the distance between the tip of the fingertips and the toes. If the fingertips touch the toes, the score is recorded as zero. If they do not touch, measure the distance between the fingers and the toes (a negative score). If they overlap, measure by how much (a positive score).
  9. Perform two trials to ensure accuracy.
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Scoring

The score for the Chair Sit and Reach Test is recorded to the nearest 1/2 inch or 1 cm as the distance reached, either as a negative or positive score. Additionally, record which leg was used for measurement. The recommended ranges for this test, based on age groups, are shown in the table below (Jones & Rikli, 2002).

Men’s Results

Age Group Recommended Range (in inches)
60-64 0-10
65-69 -1 to 8
70-74 -2 to 6
75-79 -2 to 4
80-84 -2 to 2
85+ -2 to 2

Women’s Results

Age Group Recommended Range (in inches)
60-64 0-15
65-69 -2 to 12
70-74 -3 to 10
75-79 -4 to 8
80-84 -5 to 6
85+ -5 to 4

Target Population

The Chair Sit and Reach Test is specifically designed for the aged population, who may find it difficult to perform traditional fitness tests.

Advantages

Some advantages of the Chair Sit and Reach Test include:

  • Does not require participants to get up and down from the floor like the traditional test.

Disadvantages

However, it’s important to note that the Chair Sit and Reach Test usually measures only one leg, which means it may not show any differences between sides.

Reliability

The reliability of this test depends on the amount of warm-up prior to testing. If retesting, ensure that the same procedures are followed each time, and standardize the order of tests to maintain consistency.

Contraindications

Individuals with severe Osteoporosis should not perform this test.

Additional Comments

The Chair Sit and Reach Test is a variation of the standard sit and reach test, specifically adapted for the elderly population. For a list of other test variations, please refer to the review of the sit and reach test.

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References

  • Anna Różańska-Kirschke, Piotr Kocur, Małgorzata Wilk, Piotr Dylewicz, “The Fullerton Fitness Test as an index of fitness in the elderly,” Medical Rehabilitation, 2006; 10(2): 9-16.
  • Jones C.J., Rikli R.E., “Measuring functional fitness of older adults,” The Journal on Active Aging, March-April 2002, pp. 24-30.

The Test in Action

This test is part of the Senior Fitness Test Protocol.

Similar Tests

  • Sit and Reach
  • Kraus-Weber Floor Touch Test
  • Toe Touch

Related Pages

  • The general Sit and Reach test procedure, including links to other versions of the sit and reach test.
  • Other flexibility tests
  • Sit and Reach Test Videos and other Flexibility Test Videos
  • Read a discussion about testing the elderly
  • All about the Senior Fitness Test
  • Read about Fitness Testing for Specific Groups and Special Populations

Related Products

  • Buy the Senior Fitness Test Manual
  • Browse other sit and reach boxes in the online store.
  • Flexibility Store — items to measure flexibility.

FAQs

Q: How does the Chair Sit and Reach Test differ from the traditional sit and reach test?

A: The Chair Sit and Reach Test is a modified version of the traditional sit and reach test that is specifically designed for the aged population. It eliminates the need for participants to get up and down from the floor, making it more accessible for seniors.

Q: What does the Chair Sit and Reach Test measure?

A: The Chair Sit and Reach Test specifically measures lower body flexibility in seniors.

Q: Are there any contraindications for performing the Chair Sit and Reach Test?

A: Yes, individuals with severe Osteoporosis should not perform this test.

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Q: How reliable is the Chair Sit and Reach Test?

A: The reliability of this test depends on the amount of warm-up prior to testing. It is important to ensure the same procedures are followed each time, and the order of tests should also be standardized for retesting.


Summary

The Chair Sit and Reach Test is a modified version of the traditional sit and reach flexibility test, designed to assess the functional fitness of seniors. It measures lower body flexibility and is performed using a ruler and a chair. The subject sits on the edge of the chair, extends one leg forward with the knee straight, and reaches towards the toes. The distance reached is recorded, and recommended ranges are provided based on age groups. The test is advantageous because it doesn’t require participants to get up and down from the floor. However, it only measures one leg and should not be performed by individuals with severe Osteoporosis. The reliability of the test depends on proper warm-up and standardized procedures.