Improving your physical fitness plays a very important part of your health. How does one know that their level of fitness needs improvement? They first need to do an assessment.
How to Assess Our Physical Fitness
This process of self-assessment is not always easy. Some indicators to make an assessment of physical
fitness according to Julian Melgosa are listed below;
- Subjective exertion
- Exertion according to heartbeat
- Expended calories
- Body mass index (BMI)
Julian Melgosa states that, The Indicators of each referent are obtained without much difficulty and are useful to observe our physical condition and its progress through physical exercise.
Subjectively Perceived Exertion
Albeit it is not an impartial measure, this indicator can provide a very valuable result, as it includes components that we observe for ourselves, such as mood, attitude, and other factors of a psychological nature, not reflected in beats per minute.
This self-assessment gives us an idea of the effort made by an athlete at a specific moment and can vary with time and training. For example, at the end of a first aerobic dance session, Marie Louisa perceives the session as exhausting. Two months later, she evaluates a similar session as moderate.
A subjective evaluation is a safeguard against the danger of injury: a wake-up call for prevention. (The power of Physical Exercise by Julian Melgosa).
Exertion According to Heartbeat
Because of its reliability and ease of measurement, heartbeat alone in beats per minute (bpm) is a magnificent indicator of physical fitness. To obtain it, you must know your maximum heart rate. With this information you will be able to establish an initial level and the desired goal of physical fitness that you desire to reach, as well as to make gradual progress. If you are a beginner and have a sedentary way of life, a good goal is 50 percent of your ability. Once reached, you can slowly increase to 65 percent, ideal for maintaining a healthy and fit condition. Athletes set higher levels, such as 85 percent. (The power of Physical Exercise by Julian Melgosa).
There are several reasons people exercise: to improve health, to feel better psychologically, to strengthen muscles and bones, and to increase speed of movements, among others. But perhaps the most common of all may be to lose or maintain weight. For that reason it is advisable to have a clear picture of the relationship that exists between exercise and caloric expenditure. (The power of Physical Exercise by Julian Melgosa)
Body Mass Index (BMI)
Body mass index, or BMI, is a reliable method to determine the relative amount of fat and physical fitness. BMI varies depending on size.
BMI is a tool that warns about possible weight problems and, therefore, about health. Continued physical exercise (particularly if accompanied by a diet rich in fiber and nutrients, and low in fat) ends up being of great value when the right BMI is established, thus staying away from the risks of disease as a result of a high BMI: hypertension, excess of bad cholesterol (LDL), deficiency of good cholesterol (HDL), diabetes type 2, coronary diseases, cerebrovascular accidents, osteoarthritis, and even some types of cancer, such as uterus, breast, and colon.
Finally, it is important to remember that BMI is not a perfect measure and has certain limitations:
- BMI in women tends to be higher than in men. For that reason it tends to be modified according to gender: BMI above 25 is a wake-up call for men; for women, it is not so until a level of 30.
- BMI in older people can be slightly grater, as those who are older possess, without risk, a greater proportion of adipose tissue.
- BMI in athletes tends to result in a value above normal because of high proportion of muscle tissue, which does not have fat. Therefore, these cases must be interpreted in a similar manner.
- BMI slightly varies depending on race, i.e., the Aryan race finds itself at a critical point of possible obesity with a BMI above 25, Whereas a critical point for Thai person is a BMI above 22.1, or for a Polynesian the critical point is a BMI over 29.5. (The power of Physical Exercise by Julian Melgosa).