17.5%. Not sure I'm actually this low, but I'll take it. Guess I'll ask at the gym I go to if they offer the skinfold test with calipers. I'll check the site M@L mentioned in 3 months to see if there is any progress. Thanks.
Thanks for the replies. Turns out my gym does do the calipers test (I just asked where I could get it done and they told me they could do it right then). The girl doing it didn't seem very experienced, but I got a measurement of 25%, which is average and probably roughly where I am.
Why would you test this? Well, because BFP is a far more meaningful measure of overall health than bodyweight alone. Most people experience an increase in their lean mass if they exercise regularly, and the increase can potentially be significant if they strength train regularly. So there can be little change in the scale, even as people are burning fat.
The link someone has posted above with the photos at various BF percentages in a great visual, but I think we all have a little difficulty in judging ourselves against these photos.
Online BF calculators are free and easy to measure, although they are not all that accurate in an overall sense. But they do make a good way to track your progress over time.
One compromise might be to use an online calculator on a regular basis, then 'calibrate' it against a more accurate method every 3-6 months.
The skinfold test with calipers is a pretty good compromise between accuracy, cost and ease of testing. Most gyms offer this for $10-20.
RUN4FOOD - it's more valuable than knowing your bodyweight, but it's not the most important piece of information ever. Once you're out of the 'danger zone' (over 35% for a woman I think) it's just personal preference (lower body fat can make it easier to excel at sports, and be more attractive) and knowing what, say, 20% looks like can make it possible to set a goal for yourself.
Not sure of the value of knowing your % of body fat. Based on the pictures NAUSIKAA shared I guess I'm between 25% and 30%. What is the value of knowing this percent? Is a hydro or skin caliper test of value?
I am very critical of my body, so I think I'm fatter than I probably am. I have no idea which one I look like, except for knowing I'm not at either extreme. I'm probably in the middle row, which still gives me a range from 25% to 35%
Is there an online body fat calculator that is fairly accurate? I have used 3 and have gotten 22%, 26% and 29%. I don't know where to get a skin fold test done (which I know is more accurate), and there is no where in NZ that goes the hydro one (I have googled my heart out). Is there such a thing as an accurate online calculator?
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