When it comes to body composition change there are six possible scenarios including:
1. A Participant can gain body fat (body comp deteriorates)
2. A Participant can lose body fat (body comp improves)
3. A Participant can gain muscle mass (body comp improves)
4. A Participant can lose muscle mass (body comp deteriorates)
5. A Participant can replace body fat with muscle mass (body comp improves)
6. A Participant can replace muscle mass with body fat (body comp deteriorates)
A Huge Problem Created
Of these six scenarios, BMI (Body Mass Index) is accurate ONLY WHEN MUSCLE MASS IS NOT INVOLVED. That is to say, because it treats all weight as body fat, BMI is accurate only 33% of the time (2 out of 6 scenarios) and is INACCURATE 66% of the time. This fact presents a huge problem for anyone who wants to test an intervention and accurately track changes in body composition. (1)
A Huge Problem Resolved
In contrast, ALL activities in which a participant’s own body weight is the primary resistance factor (including running, jumping, skipping, hopping, climbing, crawling, etc.) accurately reflect changes in body composition through changes in functional performance.
For example, lose body fat, gain muscle mass, or replace body fat with muscle mass (improve body comp) and your running performance improves automatically. On the other hand, gain body fat, lose muscle mass, or replace muscle mass with body fat (worsen body comp) and your running performance deteriorates automatically. Mother Nature simply built us this way.
Pull Ups Qualify
Now, since they use a participant’s body weight as the primary resistance factor, conventional pull ups, as well as modified leg-assisted pull ups accurately reflect changes in body composition through changes in functional performance. Thus when body composition improves, pull up performance improves. When body composition deteriorates, pull up performance deteriorates.
33% Accurate VS 100% Accurate
So, instead of giving accurate feedback 33% of the time, functional performance in conventional pull ups as well as modified, leg-assisted pull ups yield accurate feedback in body composition changes 100% of the time. In other words functional performance feedback is THREE TIMES AS ACCURATE AS BMI.
Introducing FORE Score
With that said, a new concept called a FORE (Functional Obesity Risk Evaluation) Score uses conventional pull ups as well as modified, leg assisted pull ups in order to give physicians, educators, and parents a practical tool with which to ACCURATELY document changes in body composition. Implementation costs and time are the same as BMI, but the feedback accuracy is three times better than BMI.
Meaningful and Motivating
It’s also simple enough that even kids understand WHAT they’re doing, WHY they’re doing it, and HOW to generate positive changes in their FORE Score. In other words, an abstract and meaningless BMI score is suddenly made meaningful and understandable when replaced by a FORE Score.
The feedback on body comp changes is also frequent (i.e. weekly), continual (for weeks and months), and tangible, all of which cultivates and encourages motivational momentum, the single most important factor when it comes to childhood obesity prevention and rehabilitation. To learn more about FORE Score check out this link.
1. The bureaucrat’s response to BMI’s well known accuracy problem is, “Yes, BMI is invalid for individuals. But for mass measurement purposes, BMI is valid.” The logical reply to that contention is, “If it’s invalid for one individual, how does it suddenly become valid for ten thousand individuals?”