Using Ultrasound to Measure Body Composition.

Efren Rodriguez Guerrero. CPT, PES, CES, MMAC.

June 22, 2020

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There is another method that rather seems to be kept a secret. It has the practicality of calipers, and the accuracy of DXA (Pineau, Filliard, and Bocquet 2009) and underwater weighing (Utter and Hager 2008).

     The CRUX: One of the best indicators of overall health is the percentage of body fat. Carrying too much, increases the risk of serious medical conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, and even some forms of cancer.  The accuracy of bodyfat measurements using calipers depend on many factors such as the type of caliper used, and the time of the day the measurement is taken. The technician taking the measurements needs at least 2000 trials of experience in order to produce accurate measurement. It's a task that requires a high level of technical skill, and that even proficient technicians have a high number of innacurate measurements.



     Measuring body composition should not be such an esoteric task. Currently the most accurate measuring methods can get quite expensive, specially if they have to be performed frequently, DXA  and underwater weighing  being the most utilized.

There is another method that rather seems to be kept a secret. It has the practicality of calipers, and the accuracy of DXA (Pineau, Filliard, and Bocquet 2009) and underwater weighing (Utter and Hager 2008).


     Surface anthropometry to measure subcutaneous adipose tissue—ultrasound. Ultrasound improves the error associated with compressibility and elasticity of skinfolds (Ramirez 1992), improves the accuracy of skinfold measures in the obese (Kuczmarski, Fanelli, and Koch 1987), and eliminates the learned skill and associated errors in pinching/grasping the fold of skin that is needed when using calipers. In addition to providing accurate body composition values, ultrasound can also provide skeletal muscle cross-sectional area. With this feature, changes to the diet and training programs of the athlete can be monitored in terms of their effects on specific muscle groups. In this manner, if the diet and training program are focused in a manner to increase lean body mass, this specific variable can be monitored with ultrasound technology.



     The increase in availability of easy-to-use ultrasound equipment has made it possible to integrate this technology in the programs of my personal training clients.



In good health,


Efren Rodriguez. CPT, PES, CES, MMAC.

Fortza + Fit Personal Training.

Exclusively at Ultimate Fitness Center in Chula Vista.

email: efren@fortza.fit

web: www.fortzafit.com

ph: (619) 780-6968

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