Body composition testing (also referred to as percent body fat testing) can be performed using several techniques. Body composition methods available at SFSU include: (1) hydrostatic weighing, (2) air displacement plethysmography, and (3) the skinfold technique.
Hydrostatic (or underwater) weighing
Hydrostatic weighing is one of the most accurate techniques that involves a person being weighed while submerged in a tank of water.(~ ±3% error)
Air displacement plethysmography
Air displacement plethysmography, via our Bod Pod, is also extremely accurate and estimates percent body fat by measuring the amount of air a person displaces. (~± 3% error)
The skinfold technique
The skinfold technique assesses the thickness of skinfolds taken at various parts of the body. This method is quicker, with a slightly higher margin of error. (±3.5% error)