Outreach: Programs and Services
The Human Performance Clinical/Research Laboratory offers several services for a fee. Please call or email for prices and/or to make an appointment.
Phone: (970) 491-3847
We offer body composition by skinfold measurements and hydrostatic (underwater) weighing. The measurements include seven-site skinfold measurements, pulmonary function to determine residual volume and hydrostatic weighing. The cost for the initial body composition measurement is $60. If you choose to return for a follow-up measurement, the cost is $30.
When body composition is calculated, the body is divided into two components: fat mass and fat free mass. Fat free mass (FFM) refers to all of the body tissue with the exception of stored fat. It includes muscle, bone, and nerve fiber coverings, as well as the essential fats the body requires for cell wall construction and other structures. Lean body weight (LBW) is the quantitative expression of the FFM and is usually expressed in kilograms or pounds. LBW is equal to the total body weight minus the weight of fat mass. A more precise breakdown of body composition would be into a 4-compartment model: protein, mineral, fat, and water.
Skinfold testing measures the double fold of skin and subcutaneous fat at various sites on the body but does not measure whole body fat percentage. Whole body fat can be predicted, mathematically via multiple regressions. This method is used quite often in both research and clinical settings because it is less expensive, requires minimal equipment, yields accurate measurement of body fat percentage (if performed correctly), and requires less time and effort upon the subject. Although skinfold testing is quick and less expensive than other methods, a large source of error is that the equations used are population specific and may not account for racial or ethnic differences.
Hydrostatic weight has been considered the "gold standard" for measuring body composition for many years and is often used to validate other body composition measurement procedures. This method is based on Archimedes’ Principle which states that an object placed in water is buoyed by a force equal to the amount of water it displaces. Hydrostatic weight is also based on the knowledge that fat is less dense than water and will, therefore, float and make a person weigh less in water. Conversely, if a person has more lean body mass (bone, muscle, etc.), he/she will weigh more in water because these components are denser than water and will sink. Hydrostatic weight measures body density. That measurement is then entered into various equations that will convert to % body fat.
We offer maximal exercise without oxygen consumption measurement. The test may be performed on a cycle or treadmill. The parameters measured are: heart rate, electrocardiogram, blood pressure and perceived exertion. The cost for maximal exercise testing depends on the parameters chosen and the risk level. Please contact us for pricing.
Maximal exercise testing is used a tool for screening prior to participation in an exercise program. It allows physiologists to observe the body’s reaction to a gradually increasing workload, which is helpful to anyone whether considering establishing an activity program or currently exercising. Your physician may order a maximal exercise test prior to starting an exercise program. This type of testing is helpful in creating individualized training programs based on maximal heart rate and maximal workload and improves the success of the program.
It is to be noted that as more muscles are used in a VO2 max test (up to 50%), the end measurement will be higher. For example the average person will have a higher VO2 measurement on a treadmill versus a cycle.