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V-sit Reach (or Sit and Reach)

This activity measures flexibility of the lower back and hamstrings.

V-sit Reach Testing

Two students demonstrate the v-sit reachHere’s what you do:

  • A straight line two feet long is marked on the floor as the baseline.
  • A measuring line four feet long is drawn perpendicular to the midpoint of the baseline extending two feet on each side and marked off in half-inches. The point where the baseline and measuring line intersect is the “0” point.
  • Student removes shoes and sits on floor with measuring line between legs and soles of feet placed immediately behind baseline, heels 8-12 inches apart.
  • With hands on top of each other, palms down, the student places them on measuring line.
  • With the legs held flat by a partner, the student slowly reaches forward as far as possible, keeping fingers on the measuring line and feet flexed.
  • After three practice tries, the student holds the fourth reach for three seconds while that distance is recorded.
V-sit Reach Tip

Participants are most flexible after a warm-up run. Best results may occur immediately after performing the endurance run.

V-sit Reach Rules

Legs must remain straight with soles of feet held perpendicular to the floor (feet flexed). Students should be encouraged to reach slowly rather than “bounce” while stretching. Scores, recorded to the nearest half inch, are read as plus scores for reaches beyond baseline, minus scores for reaches behind baseline.

Sit and Reach Testing

An instructor measures a students results on the sit and reach boxHere’s what you do:

  • You’ll need a specially constructed box with a measuring scale marked in centimeters, with 23 centimeters at the level of the feet.
  • The student removes shoes and sits on floor with knees fully extended, feet shoulder-width apart and soles of the feet held flat against the end of the box.
  • With hands on top of each other, palms down, and legs held flat, student reaches along the measuring line as far as possible. After three practice reaches, the fourth reach is held while the distance is recorded.
Sit and Reach Tip

Participants are most flexible after a warm-up run. Best results may occur immediately after performing the endurance run.

Sit and Reach Rules

Legs must remain straight, soles of feet against box and fingertips of both hands should reach evenly along measuring line. Scores are recorded to the nearest centimeter.

Constructing a Sit and Reach Box
  • Using any sturdy wood or comparable material (3/4" plywood is recommended), cut the following pieces: two pieces of 12" x 12", two pieces of 12" x 10", and one piece of 12" x 21".
  • Assemble the pieces using nails or screws and wood glue.
  • Inscribe the top panel with 1 centimeter gradations. It is crucial that the 23 centimeter line be exactly in line with the vertical plane against which the subject’s feet will be placed.
  • Cover the apparatus with two coats of polyurethane sealer or shellac.
  • For convenience, you can make a handle by cutting a 1" x 3" hole in the top panel.
  • The measuring scale should extend from 9 cm to 50 cm.
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