Calipers, Skinfold, Manual

Definition : Skinfold calipers designed to assess body fat in subcutaneous adipose tissue by measuring the thickness of folds of skin gathered at various areas of the body by mechanical means. These instruments are typically manually operated, handheld, metallic, and/or rigid plastic calipers with an L-shaped frame with a linear scale along its longer arm and a second L-shaped sliding arm that may include an auxiliary graduated scale to facilitate fine adjustment and increase the accuracy of the measurement (i.e., vernier calipers); the long L-shaped arm is usually spring-loaded to ensure even pressure and is conformed for easy grasping by the operator. Devices with other shapes are also available. Some calipers include circular graduated scales (gauges) to facilitate reading. Skinfold calipers are used mainly to measure the skinfold on the posterior aspect of the upper arm; measurements are also frequently performed on the thighs or back or over the lower ribs.

UMDC code : 10547

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