Body Composition Essay

1219 words - 5 pages

Body composition is one of the five health related fitness components and it is the percent body fat, bone, water and muscle found in your body. Although fat is associated with negative connotations, it has important functions in our body such as the cushioning of organs, shock absorption and temperature regulations. This ‘positive’ fat is known as essential fat, and the ‘negative’ fat is known as nonessential fat. The percent body fat is used to determine the total fat found in your body and it is based on gender and size of each individual. In the textbook “Concepts of Physical Fitness: Active Lifestyle for Wellness” by Corbin, he states that fat location influences health risk; based on where the fat is located you could be considered an apple or a pear. A person considered an apple has fat in the upper body. This is often found in men and in menopausal women. A pear shape, which is most common in women than men, has more fat located in the hips and upper legs. Corbin defines visceral fat as fat located at the core of the body (abdominal cavity), and subcutaneous fat as fat located under the skin.
There are different ways to determine your body composition and the risks that they involve. In this lab, body measurements are taken to find the body percent fat, waist-to-hip ratio, body mass index (BMI), and basal metabolic rate (BMR). Skin folds for the chest, abdomen, and thigh were taken for males, and triceps, iliac crest, and thigh for females. Age, height, and weight for each person were recorded as well as the waist and hip circumference.
The skin folds for triceps, iliac crest, and thigh are 21mm, 34 mm, and 19mm respectably, giving a sum of 74 mm. Using the sum of skin folds (mm) and current age (19), the percent body fat equaled to 28.4% body fat classifying as healthy with a risk being optimal for good health. According to Corbin one half of our body fat is located around organs and muscles, while the rest of the fat is located under the skin (skin folds). Corbin says that the more skin folds you take, the more accurate your results are, and it can help detect the subcutaneous fat.
The waist-to-hip ratio equaled to .74 with a measurement of 28 inches at the waist and 38 inches on the hips. This ratio is classified as a low risk. Waist-to-hip ratio helps determine the risk of diseases dealing with how your fat is distributed throughout your body (Corbin 2013). Waist measurements can help indicate visceral fat, which increases health risk. Based on the measurements above, subcutaneous fat or pear shape would be a better description of my body fat. The human body type can also be divided into three extreme body types; endomorph, mesomorph, and ectomorph, known as somatotypes (Mackenzie 2001). Endomorph body type is characterized as a person with short arms and legs with a lot of fat on the body. Mesomorph has a medium structure and height with a minimum amount of fat. People with this body type tend to gain muscle and strength easiest....

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