In the fitness industry there are so many descriptions of the term Fitness. Below are example situations of when I’ve heard it being used.
– Wow that guy on the Bike is pedalling really fast, he’s super fit!
– Look at that lady doing burpees so easily, she’s mega fit!
– Mo Farah is one of the fittest people on earth!
Likewise when I meet with new clients to discuss their goals they will often say that they would like to get fitter which would cue my response “Fitter, but in what way?”
Arguably when we describe someone as being ‘Fit’ the most common image we have would be of someone who is lean and has a good cardiovascular base. However fitness is such a broad term and has different meanings to different people.
British Tennis player Johanna Konta has great cardio fitness whereas World’s Strongest Man Eddie Hall posseses amazing fitness in the form of Power and Strength. Your local Yoga instructorwill have incredible flexibility fitness. When an athlete is injured he or she will likely have a “fitness assessment” by the team physio to determine whether or not that individual is ‘fit’ to play. So my point is fitness can be used to describe many situations.
For the past 7 years I have regularly been working with gym goers, non gym members as well as sporting athletes.
As a result I devised 2 separate bases of assessing their fitness levels. See below
Gym/Non gym Fitness assessment tools:
Cardiovascular (Aerobic and Anaerobic)
Strength (Endurance & Maximal )
Sports Athlete Fitness assessment tools:
To give you an example
New mother wants to exercise to help lose weight and get stronger for everday activity with her baby. The tools I would prioritise would be assessing her lifestyle, taking appropriate body measurements as well measuring her Strength (mainly endurance). I would also recommend some cardiovascular work to also help assist her weight training endurance.
A competitive 100m Sprinter looking to improve speed at the start and mainly out of the blocks. For this specific case the main areas I would focus on would be Speed, Power, Agility, and Co-ordination.
Even though these are separate groups I often combine them to further personalise the assesssment for the individual when necessary.
Relate your fitness assessments to the environment you exercise in. Don’t think that because you can’t match Johanna Konta’s Beep test score or deadlift anywhere near Eddie Hall’s World record means that you’re unfit!
Relate back to my previous blog prior to Christmas on setting SMART goals which will help you further assess and track your fitness levels whatever your goal.