2006 Student Research Conference:
19th Annual Student Research Conference

Human Potential and Performance

Correlations Between Body Mass Index and Percent Fat Among Athletic and Non-Athletic College Women
Cathy J. Bledsoe* and Abbie E. Smith
Dr. Alex J. Koch and Dr. Jerry Mayhew, Faculty Mentors

Body Mass Index (BMI) is the most commonly used measure of obesity. BMI tends to overestimate fat mass in muscular individuals, and as a result muscular athletes with a low percent body fat may be erroneously classified as overweight or obese. Skinfolds are the most common estimate of percent body fat. Ideally, the BMI and skinfolds should be correlated. However, due to potential for misclassification with BMI due to greater muscle mass, we hypothesized that a sample of female college athletes (N=74) would have a lower correlation between BMI and percent fat than a sample of non-athletic college females (N=124). Skinfolds were obtained from female non-athletes and athletes from the track, basketball, and soccer teams. The percent fat calculated from the skinfolds was correlated to each participant’s BMI. Our results indicated that BMI was significantly correlated to percent fat in both the athletic (r = 0.741) and non-athletic (r=0.743) samples.

Keywords: Obesity, Body composition

Topic(s):Exercise Science

Presentation Type: Poster

Session: 60-18
Location: OP Lobby and Atrium
Time: 4:15

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