Take On This Week’s Friday Fitness Test: The Sit-Up
Men's Health teamed up with the Sports Science Institute of South Africa to define a new fitness standard.

November 25, 2013

man doing a sit-up in gym

Want to find out if you’re MHFit? Take the test now!

Equipment: None.

Goal: Get the max amount of pull-ups with correct form.

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Take The Test

Lie face-up on the floor with your knees bent, feet flat on the ground. Two testers are required for this test, one tester should hold your feet while the other tester keeps their hand on the floor behind your back to validate the downward movement. While touching your ears with your hands, curl up and touch your knees with your elbows and then descend back to the start in a controlled manner.

The second tester you should put their hand (palm facing up) under your upper back so that his or her wrist makes contact with your spine, in line with the bottom of your shoulder blades. The rep doesn’t count if you take your hands off your ears, if your elbows don’t touch your thighs, or if your back doesn’t touch the tester’s hand on every rep. The max number of sit-ups performed in two minutes is recorded. You are allowed to rest within the two minutes and then do more reps, but the total rep count for the two minutes is your score.

Related: The 6 Common Fitness Tips That Are Actually Bad Advice

Training Tip

To crack out more reps, you should focus on your breathing. If you don’t, you will be fatigued by the time the first 30 seconds pass, and you’ll struggle through the rest of the test. Rather start off controlled, and focus on breathing out on the way up of the sit-up, and then breathe in on the way down.

Reasons For Disqualification

1. Failure of knees to touch thigh.
2. Failure of scapular to touch tester’s hand.
3. Your hands come off ear while performing the sit-up.

Level 1 – 0-31
Level 2 – 32-37
Level 3 – 38-44
Level 4 – 45-51
Level 5 – 52-59
Level 6 – 60-65
Level 7 – 66-72
Level 8 – 73-79
Level 9 – 80-84
Level 10 – 85+

Related: Try These Two Simple Exercises To Improve Your Core

To workout your final score, add up your seven totals to get one number. Then divide that number by 7 and times by 10. That will be your final MH Elite score for the leaderboard.

(Total score ÷ 7) X 10 = MHELITE score