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Modified Sit & Reach Test

Testing and measurement are the means of collecting information upon which subsequent performance evaluations and decisions are made. In the analysis, we need to bear in mind the factors that may influence the results.


This test aims to monitor the athlete's hip and trunk flexibility development.

Required Resources

To conduct this test, you will require:

  • Box
  • Metre Ruler
  • Tape
  • Assistant

How to conduct the test

  • The athlete warms up for 10 minutes and then removes their shoes
  • The athlete sits on the floor with their back and head against a wall, legs fully extended with the bottom of their feet against the box
  • The athlete places one hand on top of the other, reaches forward to the ruler while keeping their back and head against the wall
  • The assistant adjusts the ruler so that the tip of the athlete's fingers touches the edge of the ruler and secures the ruler with tape
Sit and reach
  • The athlete slowly bends forward and reaches along the top of the ruler as far as possible
  • The assistant records the distance reached (cm)
Sit and Reach


The following normative data is available for this test.

The following table is for adults under 35 years of age (McArdle et al. 2000. p. 562)[1]:

Gender Excellent Above average Average Below average Poor
Male >17.9 17.9 - 17.0 16.9 - 15.8 15.7 - 15.0 <15.0
Female >17.9 17.9 - 16.7 16.6 - 16.2 16.1 - 15.4 <15.4

The following table is for adults between 35 & 49 years of age (McArdle et al. 2000. p. 562)[1]:

Gender Excellent Above average Average Below average Poor
Male >16.1 16.1 - 14.6 14.5 - 13.9 13.8 - 13.4 <13.4
Female >17.4 17.4 - 16.2 16.1 - 15.2 15.1 - 14.5 <14.5

To evaluate the athlete's performance, select the age group and gender, enter the best distance and then select the 'Calculate' button.

Age Gender Distance cm     Assessment


Analysis of the test result compares it with the athlete's previous results for this test. It is expected that, with appropriate training between each test, the analysis would indicate an improvement in the athlete's flexibility.

Target Group

This test is suitable for active individuals but not for those where the test would be contraindicated.


Test reliability refers to how a test is consistent and stable in measuring what it is intended to measure. Reliability will depend upon how strict the test is conducted and the individual's level of motivation to perform the test. The following link provides a variety of factors that may influence the results and test reliability.


Test validity refers to the degree to which the test measures what it claims to measure and the extent to which inferences, conclusions, and decisions based on test scores are appropriate and meaningful. This test provides a means to monitor training on the athlete's physical development.


  • Minimal equipment required
  • Simple to set up and conduct
  • Can be conducted almost anywhere


  • Specialist equipment required
  • Assistant required to administer the test


  1. McARDLE, W. et al. (2000) Essentials of Exercise Physiology. 2nd ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins

Page Reference

If you quote information from this page in your work, then the reference for this page is:

  • MACKENZIE, B. (2003) Modified Sit and Reach Test [WWW] Available from: [Accessed