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Charleston Personal Training Studio To Use InBody Body Composition Analyzer

Shaping Concepts Personal Training Studios is pleased to announce we’ll now be incorporating the latest in advanced technology to assess body composition. The InBody 520 Body Composition Analyzer by GE Healthcare will now be used for assessments in our Charleston location.

I’m really excited about this new development as it’s the first of several projects I have in the works to differentiate Shaping Concepts in the realm of personalized fitness and nutrition programming.

With new technology and advanced testing methods we’ll be able to better “personalize” all aspects of a client’s program. I think you’re really going to like all the new developments I have in store.

Back to the subject of body composition testing. Fitness professionals typically use hand held bioelectrical impedance analyzers or skin fold calipers to assess an individual’s body composition. The hand held units have been the method of choice here at Shaping Concepts for some time now.

The reason I’ve opted for the hand-held bioelectrical impedance analyzers in the past is they produce a quick reading and are easy for anyone to operate. The downside is the overall accuracy of the readings. While effective at estimating a range for body fat percentages, they’re not extremely accurate in terms of consistent readings. Two point readings on a single frequency have limitations and readings can fluctuate based on factors such as hydration levels.

The plus side is they eliminate the probability of testing errors that can occur with skin-fold calipers when different individuals conduct the measurements. Skin fold caliper measurements can be very accurate in the hands of a trained individual, but the process is somewhat time consuming and has limitations when it comes to advanced testing variables.

The gold standard in body composition testing…

The gold standard in body composition analysis has long been hydrostatic weighing and DEXA (dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry), both of which aren’t very conducive to use in a fitness facility.

The InBody 520 Body Composition Analyzer is one of the few units that’s comparable in terms of accuracy. With the use of patented technology the InBody 520 has achieved a 98% accuracy correlation with DEXA testing. This makes it one of the most reliable and accurate measurements available.

What makes this unit really stand out is its ability to provide additional insight into our client’s metabolism. Not only is body weight and body fat percentages accurately calculated but it also distinguishes between Fat Mass (FM), intracellular and extracellular water, and lean body composition.

Here’s how it works…

The difference in the InBody 520 compared to the inexpensive hand-held or scale bioelectrical impedance analyzers is simply with the technology and testing method.

The InBody 520 uses “direct segmental multi-frequency bioelectrical impedance” which measures the body in a segmental fashion. I know “boring,” but stick with me…

The use of multiple frequencies eliminates the need to use statistical (or empirical) data in calculating values with other methods. In other words, reference ranges to height, age, and body weight don’t come into play.

This is truly a personalized assessment that factors in “bioindividuality” variables.

Instead of a single frequency and two point contact with the hand-held or scale units, this unit incorporates technology that allows for multiple frequencies and uses 8 polar tactile electrodes which measures five different impedance readings for the body’s trunk and four limbs. This is very important because it can accurately measure impedance in the highly sensitive trunk area.

I won’t bore you with the details, but it all goes back to measuring conductivity through out the body in an accurate fashion. This is what the technology in this unit allows us to do.

Basically to get a reading you stand on the unit (with bare feet on the bottom sensors) and hold onto sensors at the hands. The test is easy to perform although all of this may sound complicated.

The technology simply provides us with readings indicating SPECIFICALLY where your body is storing more fat over others and incorporates data on water weight retention along with other readings.

The testing analysis can be printed out into a report which I’ve included a picture of below. It’s hard to read since I had to shrink down but it’s reporting on the following:

  • Weight
  • Lean Body Mass
  • Body Fat Mass
  • Intracellular Water
  • Extracellular Water
  • Total Body Water
  • BMI
  • Percent Body Fat
  • Segmental Lean Analysis (right arm, left arm, trunk, right leg, left leg)

Is the technology used in the InBody 520 Body Composition Analyzer validated with research?

The answer is yes. Here are some references:

  1. Sartorio A, Malavoti M, Agosti F, Marinone PG, Caiti O, Battistini N, Bedogni G. Body water distribution in severe obesity and its assessment from eight polar bioelectrical impedance analysis. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2005 Feb; 59(2):155-160
  2. Malavoti M, Mussi C, Poli M, Fantuzzi AL, Salvioli G, Battistini N, Bedogni G. Cross-calibration of eight polar bioelectrical impedance analysis versus dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry for the assessment of total and appendicular body composition in healthy subjects aged 21-82 years. Ann Hum Biol. 2003 Jul-Aug; 30(4):380-391
  3. Bedogni G, Malavoti M, Severi S, Poli M, Mussi C, Fantuzzi AL, Battistini N. Accuracy of an eight point tactile electrode impedance method in the assessment of total body water. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2002 Nov; 56(11):1143-1148

Specific protocols to follow regarding the test…

The fitness professionals at Shaping Concepts will all be trained on how to conduct the testing to ensure accurate and reliable results. Here are a few protocols to take note of:

  • Individuals can expect a deviation in results if they have a fever, cold, or chill as body composition may not reflect typical body status.
  • For optimal accuracy go to the bathroom to eliminate excess fluid prior to taking the test.
  • Individuals should NOT perform testing after strenuous exercise or physical activity. Yes, this means you’ll want to test prior to your workout and not after.
  • It is not recommended to consume caffeine prior to the testing.
  • Electrolyte tissue should be used to ensure optimal conductivity by wiping down the sensors prior to each testing.
  • Individuals should attempt to test under the same conditions (time of day, time following last meal, etc).

The testing will now be part of our assessment process at Shaping Concepts and is FREE for all active personal training clients. Individuals who are not clients at Shaping Concepts can inquire about receiving the test by submitting the contact us webform or calling the studio at 843-971-8665.

The testing will be added to our array of assessments including RMR (resting metabolic rate) testing. The cost of the InBody 520 Body Composition assessment and reporting is $30.

Shane Doll is a certified personal trainer, fat loss expert, speaker, and founder of Shaping Concepts Fitness Training Studios. If you’re looking for a personal trainer in Charleston, you can receive a no-obligations personal training trial and consultation without risking a dime. Over 1000 Charleston area residents have transformed their bodies following our unique burst training workouts and simplified nutrition programs. Experience the Shaping Concepts difference today.

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Category: Studio News.