3 Exercise Tests to Assess Fitness Levels

See how you stack up with other women in your age-group by doing these three classic exercise tests, adapted from The American College of Sports Medicine's Complete Guide to Fitness & Health, by Barbara Bushman, Ph.D. Then use your results to determine your starting point for our age-defying workout.


The pushup is a basic body-weight move that gauges your muscular strength.

Place your hands directly under your shoulders and extend your legs behind you, knees on the floor. Bend your elbows to lower your chest to within an inch of the floor, keeping your back flat, then press back to start. Do as many as you can with proper form in two minutes.

More: 3 Ways Push-Ups Can Help You

Level: Needs Improvement/Fair

Ages 20-29: <14

Ages 30-39: <12

Ages 40-49: <10

Level: Good

Ages 20-29: 15-20

Ages 30-39: 13-19

Ages 40-49: 11-14

Level: Very Good/Excellent

Ages 20-29: 21+

Ages 30-39: 20+

Ages 40-49: 15+

Need tips on improving in this fitness area? Try these 6 Power Moves That Boost Your Speed, Strength, Metabolism.

More: 3 Steps to the Perfect Push Up


Position a measuring tape on the floor with a 12-inch piece of tape across it at the 15-inch mark. Sit barefoot on the floor with your back straight and feet about a foot apart, heels on the edges of the tape. Reach forward (without bouncing) as far down the tape as you can. Try two or three times and count your longest reach.

More: 3 Upper-Body Strength & Flexibility Exercises

Level: Needs Improvement/Fair

Ages 18-25: <18"

Ages 26-35: <18"

Ages 36-45: <16"

Level: Good

Ages 18-25: 19-20"

Ages 26-35: 19-20"

Ages 36-45: 17-18"

Level: Very Good/Excellent

Ages 18-25: 21+"

Ages 26-35: 20+"

Ages 36-45: 19+"

Tip: Try these 10 Best Yoga Moves regularly to boost flexibility.

More: How to Test Flexibility to Avoid Injury