What Is the P90X Fitness Test?

Women should be able to do one pull-up to pass the P90X fitness test.

Women should be able to do one pull-up to pass the P90X fitness test.

You've probably heard people talk about how worn out they are after doing a P90X training class. The program is a serious commitment that will challenge you physically and mentally. The P90X fitness test helps determine if you're physically ready to take and complete the P90X program. The 90-day at-home classes get you in shape with a variety of challenging exercises, including yoga, cardio and strength. By taking the test, you can also chart your progress. You'll retake the test at the end of the program to see how much you've improved.

Tips for Taking the Test

Taking the P90X fitness test can help you determine if the P90X program is right for you. You'll want to take the test about a week before you start the P90X program so you aren't too sore when you start the regimen. Make sure you take the fitness test on a day when your muscles aren't sore and when you're well rested. Read all the instructions carefully (they will come with your purchased program), and record every result. Be honest and don't exaggerate any of your numbers. You'll want an honest assessment when you finish the program so you can really see how much you've changed.

Equipment Needed

There are several pieces of equipment you'll need before taking the test. You need a heart-rate monitor so you can take your resting heart rate. A body-fat caliper lets you measure your percentage of body fat by measuring your folds of skin. You'll also need a tape measure, a scale, a pull-up bar and a timer or stopwatch. The pull-up bar should be installed securely so you don't have to worry about it falling while taking the test.

Test Components

The test takes approximately 40 minutes. Part one of the test examines your ability to perform pull-ups. Part two tests your ability to perform a vertical leap, which involves jumping straight into the air and subtracting the highest point you can reach during a jump from the highest point you can reach while standing. Part three of the test examines your ability to do push-ups. Women should do a minimum of three traditional push-ups or 15 push-ups on their knees. The rest of the test consists of reviewing your ability to do toe touches, wall squats, bicep curls, in-and-out abdominal crunches (bringing your knees to your chest and then straightening your legs) and two minutes of jumping jacks. Each part has a minimum score that men and women should achieve if they are going to participate in the P90X program.

If You Don't Pass

If you take the fitness test and can't do the minimum requirements, don't give up. Jeremy Yost, a fitness trainer, believes that some people can still do the P90X fitness program even if they don't pass the test if they have the right mindset and a strong motivation. Even if you don't pass the test, it can provide you with motivation when you're 30 days into the P90X program and can compare where you are with where you started. However, if you don't pass and the fitness test concerns you, there are a number of fitness programs for beginners that you can take instead. Yost recommends Power 90, Slim in 6 or Shakeology as alternatives.

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About the Author

With features published by media such as Business Week and Fox News, Stephanie Dube Dwilson is an accomplished writer with a law degree and a master's in science and technology journalism. She has written for law firms, public relations and marketing agencies, science and technology websites, and business magazines.

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