How to Measure Body Fat (IN HOME METHOD!)

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What's up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere,

Today we're going to talk all about body fat. I'm going to help you to learn how to accurately

measure your body fat whether you're going to use maybe the more expensive route, or

go with the more economical route.

Either way you've got to know how to measure and where to measure in order to get the right

number. The key is, you should be focusing on that that number. You don't want to be

focusing on the scale and your body weight because it's not going to tell you the complete


The more accurate picture is going to be revealed when you can figure out what your own body

fat level is and try to maximize your lean muscle mass while diminishing your levels

of body fat. You see, I think that's what we specialize in here at Athlean-X.

Athlean-X is all about creating bodies that are maximal muscle, natural muscle gains while

minimizing body fat so you can have that athletic and lean look. Now, the more expensive route:

you guys have probably seen a Skyndex before, or body fat calipers. These are good.

These are more on the expensive end. These will cost you about $350-$400. However, they're

a really important tool if you're talking about how much you're going to rely on them

to dictate your progress. Again, as opposed to how many times people will buy new scales

and continue to jump on their scales.

So when you're a man what you want to do is: you want to measure in three places. Your

first location is going to be your chest, okay? From here, what you want to do is you

want to divide the line right here, down the middle of the nipple and over here on the

corner of your shoulder.

So somewhere right in between, which would be right here, and you're going to take this

one at a diagonal. Okay, now what you want to do is you want to pinch the muscle right

there on that diagonal and you're going to pull away from the muscle underneath and you

can ensure that you're actually grabbing just the body fat and not the muscle by contracting

your pecs underneath because if you're grabbing the muscle itself, when you contract it it's

going to pull away.

It's going to pull out from underneath. So, you're left with the pinch of what you want,

you grab just to the top of that, like this, and then you click the button here if you're

using this – or whatever calipers you're using – you register that mark. The next

mark is, again, here in the abdomen to the left or right of your navel. It's about 1"


You're going to grab on here, in a vertical way, and then same thing; you're going to

pull away, contract the abs underneath to make sure that you're getting just he muscle,

and then you're going to register that part. Then lastly, for the thigh – again, it's

actually good to lift one leg up as high as you can because you're going to activate the

muscles underneath here – the rectus.

So we do our pinch here, we let it settle and we do that. So now this came back at 4.9.

Routinely I'm usually in the 5-6 range, or so. The most important thing is that you continue

to do your own testing in that you're consistent with it because the one thing you want to

do is you want to gage this progress.

If it's always you doing the measurements then you can rely on that, even if you're

off a little bit it's looking at the relative change between one measurement and the next.

Now, if you're at home and you don't know, or have access to this, and you don’t have

access to a cheap pair of calipers, there's actually an old fashioned way to do this.

I just want to show it to you because there's a tool that I'm going to put a link to below

that you can actually use and put the numbers. All you have to do is get the numbers. So

what you do is – you would probably be best off if you had someone that can help you with

this, but they'll do the same three pinches.

They'll come here, they'll pinch away like this, and then what they'll do is they'll

measure the thickness of that pinch. That's all the calipers are doing anyway. All the

calipers are doing is, they're at a 0 mark and then when you stick something in between

they're measuring how thick the thing that you stuck in between is.

In this case it's the body fat fold. They'll take this and they'll measure how thick that

fold is and they'll go from there. Now let's say it was something like this. We're going

to exaggerate a little bit. They would measure how thick that fold is and you can see that's

sort of like 1.5" or so from there to there.

They've actually come up with some rough estimates. I wrote them down here to where I can read

them to you – the Ellington Dardon equation – that basically says where the pinch and

inch came from. If you can pinch a 0.25" on that location you're basically looking at

about 5% to 8% body fat.

What you would do is pinch and measure, pinch and measure, and pinch and measure, and then

you'd add them all up together and average them. That would give you your rough body

fat idea. Again, this is not an exact science here. Neither are the calipers for that matter.

They're giving you something you could at least use as a tool.

5% to 8%. 0.5" of pinching, 9% to 13%. 0.75" of a pinch thickness, 14% to 18% body fat.

1", if you can pinch an inch, 19% to 23% body fat. 1.5" is 24% to 27%. 2" pinch is 28% to

32%. Then 2.5" yield 33% and up. The key here, again, is focusing on your body fat over your

weight. If you're adding plenty of lean muscle your weights going to go up.

It had better because it's a much more dense tissue and that's what you're looking for.

You're not necessarily concerned about what the body weight is on the scale, it's how

you look and how you feel, and how much lean muscle you can densely pack onto your physique.

It's the body fat that's going to reveal the true picture and you want that number to go


Of course, different people have different goals. Some athletes might want to hover around

the 10% to 14% body fat only because it's going to help them in their sport. NFL players

are going to do better with a little more cushioning to be able to withstand. Even some

MMA fighters will be able to withstand some of the impact of their sport.

One number is not always going to be good for everybody, but from an aesthetics standpoint,

some guys want to get lower and lower. The key is focusing on that number. If you're

looking for a way to get yourself down – as I said in the very beginning – the Athlean-X

training system is all about maximizing lean muscle and minimizing the amount of body fat

that you have in your body.

That's the whole goal. Without having to go through these ridiculous bulking, cutting

bullshit phases that I have ranted about here in the past. If you want one other way that

you can quickly scan for what you might be at right now so you know what you want to

get to, I did another video. I'll link it right here. It was basically a visual scale.

You can go and look at and quickly compare an example of what a 13% or 18% would look

like. You can compare yourself and see where you want to go and get to. All of that is

in that link below and also, like I said, the Athlean-X training system is the fastest

way to get that. You can get that at I hope you guys found this video helpful.

Make sure you leave your comments and thumbs up below.

This isn't Washboard Wednesday because you aren't going to see your abs if you don’t

have a low enough body fat percentage. Let me know what else you want to see me cover

on these videos and I'll do it here, once a week, every week on our channel.

All right, guys. I'll see you back here again soon.