We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Sit and Reach Test?

By B. Koch
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
TheHealthBoard is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At TheHealthBoard, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

The sit and reach test, also known as the V-fold test, is a way of measuring flexibility in the back and legs. It was introduced in 1952 by Wills and Dillon and today, is part of the President's Challenge physical fitness test, an awards program for school-aged children. The sit and reach test is conducted by sitting with legs outstretched, feet against a box, and reaching towards the toes.

The test is conducted by having an individual sit on the floor with his legs together and outstretched in front of him. He should not be wearing shoes. Next, the individual reaches forward as far as he can, bending at the hips and waist. The distance the tips of the fingers reach beyond the toes is measured.

Although many gyms have specially-made sit and reach boxes, this test can easily be completed at home without any specialized equipment. A bottom step can be used instead of a box. A ruler should be placed on top of the step, and the reach can be measured from there.

This type of test is designed to measure flexibility, especially the flexibility of the lower back and hamstrings. Tightness in this area can result in an exaggerated lumbar curve of the spine. This condition is called lordosis, hyperlordosis, or lumbar lordosis and can result in back pain.

There are a number of different ways to measure the distance reached in the sit and reach test. Measurements can start at zero at the toes, and any amount reached beyond that is measured. This does not provide accurate information for statistical analysis as anyone who cannot reach their toes will reach a negative number. Instead, some tests place the scale so that the toes are at 9 inches (23 centimeters), resulting in positive measurements that are useful for analysis.

Another version of the test is the modified sit and reach test. This is used for individuals with very short or very long limbs. In this test, the zero mark is adjusted to each individual's sitting reach, which results in the most accurate measurements.

There is a general scale used to measure sit and reach abilities, ranging from very poor to superior. When the zero mark is at the toes, a -7.5 inch (-20 centimeters) reach for men and a -6.0 inch (-15 centimeters) reach for women is considered very poor. Over 10 inches (27 centimeters) for men and 11.5 inches (30 centimeters) for women is considered superior. Measurements of 0 to 2 inches (0 to 5 centimeters) for men and 5 to 4 inches (1-10 centimeters) for women are average.

TheHealthBoard is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

TheHealthBoard, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

TheHealthBoard, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.