Want to know how much longer you’ve probably got to live? Take the sit-down, stand-up test! All you have to do is literally sit down on the floor, and get back up, using only your legs, if possible.
Experts say it’s a quick way to check the current state of your health. Because it measures leg strength, and lower body fitness as well as your balance, flexibility, and motor coordination.
To take the test: Stand up, cross one foot in front of the other, and sit down on the floor. Then lean forward, and stand up again. If you can do it without putting a hand or a knee down, you’ll score a perfect 10. For each body part that touches the ground on your way up or down, you subtract one point. For example, if you use one hand to help you sit, and a hand and a knee to help you get up – your score would be a 7.
Researchers had more than 2,000 middle-aged and elderly people do the sit-down, stand-up test then kept tabs on them for 6 years. The result: Anyone who scored below a 3 was 7 times more likely to die during the study than the people who scored at least an 8.
Researchers point out that knowing how well you can get up and down can give your doctor a good idea of your overall health and show you how able you are to safely live on your own. For example, say you tripped and fell, would you still be able to get up – or would you have to lie there for hours or days until somebody found you?
If you score less than a 7 on the sit-down, stand-up test – you need to get more exercise to increase your body strength. Like walking, yoga, or dance – which can improve balance and coordination. So, talk to your doctor about the sit-down, stand-up test.