sarily be extrapolated to youth, and therefore, health markers in youth need to be defined and reviewed.

While the committee provides guidance for developing cut-points (cutoff scores) for and interpreting performance on fitness tests, it did not develop specific cut-points for the recommended test items. Rather, the committee suggests an ideal approach to establishing cut-points. Recognizing that all the data necessary to establish cut-points do not exist for all the recommended tests, the committee also provides alternative approaches for establishing interim cut-points when such data are unavailable. In addition, there are aspects of fitness testing that the committee did not address in depth, such as protocols for the recommended tests, specific training for test administrators, or the appropriateness of fitness components that were not included in the committee’s statement of task. Finally, the studies reviewed were designed to collect evidence on the relationship between fitness tests and health in healthy youth. Studies on overweight and obese youth were included in the review; however, studies in special populations, such as athletes or people with disabilities1 or congenital diseases, were not reviewed. Therefore, the committee’s findings, conclusions, and recommendations do not target those special populations.


This report is organized into chapters dedicated to background on measuring fitness in youth; the committee’s methodology; and its findings, conclusions, and recommendations. Chapter 2 provides a historical perspective on the origins of youth fitness testing and the changes that have occurred over the years both in the tests and in their uses. This chapter includes a table describing fitness test batteries currently used around the world. Chapter 3 describes in detail the methodology used by the committee to identify test items, including the CDC’s systematic review, which was the primary basis for the committee’s conclusions and recommendations. Chapters 4, 5, 6, and 7 present the committee’s rationale for recommending test items for the four fitness components, respectively—body composition, cardiorespiratory endurance, musculoskeletal fitness, and flexibility—highlighting the findings of the scientific literature. As noted earlier in this chapter, the primary purpose of this report was to make recommendations for a national survey. A secondary purpose was to make recommendations for


1A disability is defined as any restriction or lack of ability to perform an activity in the manner or within the range considered normal for a human being. For the purposes of this report, this term should be construed in the broadest sense, covering impairments (i.e., a problem in body function or structure), activity limitations (i.e., a difficulty encountered by an individual in executing a task or action), and participation restrictions (i.e., a problem experienced by an individual in involvement in life situations).

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