Self-Reported Fitness Survey May Become Useful in Clinical Practice

June 25, 2012

In a newly developed self-reported fitness survey intended to estimate fitness in adults aged 40 years and older, survey items in 4 fitness domains are correlated with analogous Senior Fitness Test items, indicating that participants can use the survey to self-report physical fitness accurately.

In a newly developed self-reported fitness (SRFit) survey intended to estimate fitness in adults aged 40 years and older, survey items in 4 fitness domains are correlated with analogous Senior Fitness Test items, indicating that participants can use the survey to self-report physical fitness accurately. The domains are muscular strength and endurance, cardiovascular fitness, flexibility, and body composition.

Keith and associates developed SRFit items from the previously validated Rikli and Jones Senior Fitness Test battery of physical tests. SRFit item wording was refined with face-to-face patient interviews. Data from a pilot administration of the SRFit survey were used to guide further revisions of SRFit items.

Senior Fitness Test and SRFit response Spearman rank correlations were found for upper body strength, lower body strength, upper body flexibility (left side), upper body flexibility (right side), lower body flexibility, cardiovascular endurance, body mass index, and percent body fat. The values ranged from 0.29 to 0.74, and all values were significant at the P < .01 level. The SRFit instrument took less than 10 minutes to administer and complete.

The authors noted that physical fitness measures indicate health status and they can be used to improve management of patients' overall health.