Below are several of the most common flexibility tests you’ll see Health and Fitness Professionals perform with their clients. This is not an all inclusive list, and with time, more will be added.
Sit and Reach Test
The Sit and Reach Test is the most common flexibility test. It measures the flexibility of the lower back and hamstrings. For this assessment, you’ll be asked to sit on the floor with your knees and feet together in front of you. When seated, you’ll be asked to reach forward as far as possible with your hands together. Then you’ll be asked to do it again! Very often, your fitness professional will have a box that you place your feet against. If not, then a tape measure is used.
90-90 Hamstring Test
The 90-90 Hamstring Flexibility Test is used by fitness professionals to determine hamstring flexibility. You’ll be asked to lie down on your back with legs extended. Then your fitness professional will take a leg, flex the hip 90 degrees, and then attemp to extend the lower leg completely. Unless you’re very flexible, your leg will not extend completely. Good flexibility is when your leg extends to between 20 and 0 degrees.
Goniometric testing evaluates the range of motion allowed at the measured joint. To do this, a measurement tool known as the goniometer is used. You’ll be asked to lay down on your back, as the major joints, such as the ankle, knee, hip and shoulder are measured. Very often, the range of motion is limited by muscle flexibility, or lack thereof. A fitness professional that understands how to perform and apply the results of this type of assessment will understand how to address muscle dysfunction and correct movement compensations.