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Old 02-16-06, 05:23 AM   #1
Zeggelaar
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Bathroom scales and body fat measurement

The other day, I was looking at some bathroom scales which also measure body fat percentage. Usually I go to a testing center or health club to get this done but it would be so much easier if I could do it at home. My question is this: Are these scales reasonably accurate in their readings and if so which would be the best one to buy. I don't mind spending a few bucks for something that works well.

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Old 02-16-06, 08:03 AM   #2
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I have a set of Tanita scales. They state a 1%+/- variation.

The Australian price was $310.

They measure weight, water levels, Body mass etc. etc. You are required to enter your age, height, sex and state either training or dormant.

I have found them very good as a guide to to the level of hydration as I weigh just before and on return.

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Old 02-16-06, 08:10 AM   #3
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From everything that I have read they are considered to be pretty consistant but not accurate. I've heard that there is as much as 10% innacuracy. In other words if it shows you at 20% then you are probably 18% - 22%.
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Old 02-16-06, 08:54 AM   #4
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I enjoy using the scale as a measurement tool. It is consistent, but perhaps not accurate. I find it most helpful in that I can see the body fat % go down even when the scale doesn't show a loss (but usually tape measure also shows reduction). It seems to be in error on the high side, so I am always pleasantly surprised when I have my body fat measured at a gym or a dr.'s office.
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Old 02-16-06, 11:33 AM   #5
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I have one. Sometimes it's a good thing, sometimes it's a bad thing. I try not to obsess about my body fat but, as you can see from one of my threads, it's not possible.
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Old 02-16-06, 03:42 PM   #6
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They're dodgy. Use a tape measure instead.

Cheaper too.
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Old 02-16-06, 04:38 PM   #7
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My tanita scale has me at 5-7 % body fat in athlete mode. Granted I'm probably in the best shape than I've ever been but "grains of salt" come to mind.

One good thing though was I ame from being around 25% body fat 2 years ago so at least the downward trend is consistent.
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Old 02-16-06, 09:22 PM   #8
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You don't need one of these gizmos to tell you your body fat percentage. Look in the mirror.
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Old 02-16-06, 10:00 PM   #9
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I personally like the scales.. I have a newer model that has weight-bodyfat and % of water.. Model BF680w, onsale right now at amazon..

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...=UTF8&v=glance
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Old 02-16-06, 11:10 PM   #10
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I had one of the lower level Tanita's that I liked but I knew I could influence the weight. I got one of the higher level model's and find that my weight - unfortunately -tends to show higher. I still get a fairly broad ranges of body fact but I love the metabolic age measurement which also shows you how many calories you can consume to maintain your weight. I got 19 once and I'm well north of even 19 doubled.
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Old 02-17-06, 09:12 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeggelaar
The other day, I was looking at some bathroom scales which also measure body fat percentage. Usually I go to a testing center or health club to get this done but it would be so much easier if I could do it at home. My question is this: Are these scales reasonably accurate in their readings and if so which would be the best one to buy. I don't mind spending a few bucks for something that works well.

Thanx
they're really not THAT accurate....but loads of fun! Get one for sure if you have the money. couple of points below to make your experience an enjoyable one

1) take measurement at about the same time of day as you compare successive readings...this should be a no brainer, sorry if you didn't already know.

2) take measurements away from workouts

3) take measurements after your bladder void is nearly clear

buying tips:

more money is not necessarily better on these foot contact bioimpedence scales. if you like the other features, great...but don't think the fat analysis is better. however, you probably can achieve more accuracy if you can find a model that sends a current through your hands to your feet. NOT the handheld ones.
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Old 02-17-06, 09:22 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LowCel
From everything that I have read they are considered to be pretty consistant but not accurate. I've heard that there is as much as 10% innacuracy. In other words if it shows you at 20% then you are probably 18% - 22%.
that is too generous. a skilled person using quality calipers is still about +-4%. as in if the calculation says 16, you could be 12 or 20. kind of sucks.

not you Lowcel, but people have to understand its not necessarily a person who doesn't know what they're doing, a tanita that doesn't work, whatever....but the Gold standard these days is DEXA scanning. lets be real, kind of hard to match this precision by these other methods. even plethysmographic methods are not perfect, nor are they the standard any longer. all these methods were based off the same underlying research/formula anyway. error in one will manifest in another, just maybe not to the same degree

Last edited by mx_599; 02-17-06 at 09:32 AM.
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Old 02-17-06, 09:30 AM   #13
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something more like this. using the hands and feet. holy smokes, this one is expensive. i think there are cheaper ones than this that use hands and feet.


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