What is a Skinfold Caliper
A skinfold Caliper is a device which measure the thickness of a fold of skin with its underlying layer of fat. By doing this at key locations, shown by research to be representative of the total amount of fat on the body it is possible to estimate the total % bodyfat of a person. Skinfold Calipers have springs which exert a certain pressure on the skinfold and an accurate scale which measures the thickness in millimetres.
The Importance of % Bodyfat and Body Composition
By monitoring % Bodyfat & weight regularly, there are many things a person can learn about their fitness.
People cannot tell by simply weighting themselves and looking a a height-weight chart what their % bodyfat is of if they are overfat or underfat. Height-weight charts are based on averages and only about 50% of the population conforms to the averages on the charts. The charts make no allowances for muscle development and most people don’t really know what their frame size is. The only way to determine the amount of fat on a person's body is by actual measurement of their % bodyfat.
The way to reduce weight properly is through lots of exercise combined with a proper, well-balanced diet. In this way it is possible to actually gain muscle tissue while losing fat. Measuring bodyfat regularly will determine the effectiveness of the exercise-diet program being used.