Sit and Reach Test

The sit and reach test is a basic flexibility test that measures predominately the flexibility of the hamstrings and the muscles of the lower back. The chances are that during your school days you will have performed this test, it is also commonly used during an initial assessment when joining a major health club.

There are some different variations of this test and apart from performing in sat in a chair (mainly for the elderly) or with one leg at a time, the only other variations are regarding where the measurement or score is taken from.

With a standard test the marker will be set at zero from the feet position, so for example if you cannot reach past your toes you will get a negative score. People with long arms and shorter legs will obviously score better at this test so to ensure a fair assessment it is better to use a modified test where the point of zero is adjusted according to the foot position.

You can perform this test yourself anywhere, or you require is a box a ruler and a wall.

Place the box against the wall with the ruler length ways on top with the zero value furthest away from the wall side. Sit down with with your legs straight and the soles of your feet flat against the box. Reach forward and touch as far down the ruler as possible, record how far you can reach and this is your score.

If you are on a stretching program perform this test regularly to record your progress.