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Can J Appl Sport Sci. 1982 Sep;7(3):189-96.

Steps toward the development of generalized equations for predicting body composition of adults.


The estimation of body density from anthropometric variables is often used to measure body composition. The purpose of this report was to review the development of early published equations and follow the transition from population specific equations to generalized equations for adults. The accuracy of population specific equations were improved and refined with the addition of circumference and diameter measures in combination with skinfolds and the use of populations of varied ages and degrees of body fatness. The major weakness of the population specific equations was their inability to account for aging and the non linear relationship between subcutaneous fat and body density. Regression models using the quadratic sum of skinfolds and age have been developed to account for these sources of variation. Cross-validation research has shown that these generalized regression models are accurate for adult males and females varying greatly in age and body fatness.

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