Measurement plays an important role in motivation and evaluating the impact and effectiveness of training.
Although ‘weight loss’ is one of the leading motivators for people to become physically active and join the gym, weight can often times be a distorting and even discouraging measurement of the progress the individual is making. Weight doesn’t always decline as muscle mass increases, deviation from recommended nutritional guidance at times and failure to record and track weight measurements makes it difficult to track progress and demonstrate the effectiveness of training. Other measurements like Body Mass Index (BMI) have also been challenged as failing to take into account differences in physical characterises and muscle mass.
What should we measure?
Beyond weight or BMI, how do you measure fitness and what are its components? The American College of Sports and Exercise Medicine (ACSM) states health related physical fitness has five main components, cardiorespiratory fitness, muscular strength, muscular endurance, body composition and flexibility.
FitQuest focuses on measuring 3 of the main areas of fitness included in this definition, cardio-respiratory endurance, muscular strength and muscular endurance and also includes an additional metric; motor sensory control. This term describes your body’s ability to maintain balance using proprioception and feedback from your inner ear and eyes. This metric is important as we age, reducing injury risk and key to supporting good performance in sport and physical activity.
How should we measure fitness?
There are a range of mechanisms to measure the different aspects of fitness to ensure members and personal training clients understand what their baseline fitness levels are, so they can track their progress and monitor improvements. FitQuest completes eight fitness measurements using five tests conducted in just four minutes, making it a useful tool to support our partners in delivering quick, easy and thorough testing as a part of their member journey.
ArCTIC Centre in Arlington USA, believe that to get the best results for your members you have to get them on the right plan from the start. By understanding as much as possible about your members, this enables you to design the right training programme for them, therefore a comprehensive initial assessment is a fundamental part of an effective training program.
As an injury and rehabilitation training centre, the initial fitness assessment is key. Dr Keith Schreffler, owner at ArCTIC says, ‘ArCTIC fitness assessment tools identify imbalances and weaknesses so that they can be addressed before they develop into an injury’. As such, ArCTIC use FitQuest as a core part of their fitness assessment to measure aspects of their member’s fitness.
In addition to using FitQuest, ArCTIC also use the Functional Movement Screen (FMS) to assess flexibility, another aspect of fitness. By screening movement patterns that are key to normal function, you can successfully and quickly identify functional limitations and asymmetries. Basic movement pattern limitations can reduce the effects of functional training and physical conditioning and distort proprioception (body awareness).
ArCTIC have recently partnered with Orange Theory (OT), to help improve the delivery of the OT Weight Loss programme. OT members take monthly FitQuest measurements at the ArCTIC center in addition to the weight measurements they would usually take as part of the programme. We look forward to providing an update on their member’s progress in the coming weeks.
Touchstone Wellness, in Nottingham UK, offer their members a health and wellbeing support service. As the first and most important step in their member journey, Touchstone offer a ‘Touchstone Health Check’. The Health Check provides accurate measurements that are quick and simple. The Health Check enables Touchstone clients and coaches to create specific wellbeing programmes that are trackable, so members can see real progress.
Touchstone now offer a ‘Results in 6 weeks: Guaranteed’ program with FitQuest measurements at its heart. A FitQuest assessment is done at the start of the program and the trainer designs a personalised training plan based on the outcomes. Two additional FitQuest measurements take place during the programme to help the member see how they are progressing and keep them motivated to adhere to their training.
By focusing on measuring and evidencing the progress that their members make, Touchstone has been able to develop a loyal and passionate fan base, here are some insights from their members:
“The machines, the apps, the high-tech electronic assessments and records make it very easy and motivational.”
“A great example of how modern technology can help improve your wellbeing.”
“I’m finding my sessions to be highly motivational and great to be able to track improvements in my FQ score which translated into faster run speed and better endurance.”
“My results have given me the motivation and confidence to put myself forward for the Nottingham half-marathon, which I would have never even thought about before!”
“The exercises I am now doing seem to be making a positive difference in my body and fitness results.”
If you’re interested in finding out more about how FitQuest assessments can support your members in their fitness journey, contact us for more information.