Sit-Ups (SU)

Back to overview

1. Test objective

Determination of the strength endurance of the trunk muscles.

2. Description of the task



In the sit-up test, the test person is to complete as many sit-ups as possible in 40 seconds. During the performance, the feet are fixed by the test leader and the legs are bent at the knee joint by approx. 80°. The fingers are placed at the temples. During a sit-up from a lying position, the test subject must raise the upper body and touch both knees with both elbows. The upper body must then be lowered again so that both shoulders touch the floor.

3. Test materials

 3.1 Space requirement: 2 m2
 3.2 Time and personal requirement: 1 test leader can test 1 test person within 2 minutes
 3.3 Equipment and materials: Stopwatch, T-rail: 20x40 cm board with an attachment 5 cm high and 2 cm wide


4. Test setup

The T-rail is attached to the floor in a non-slip manner at a safe distance from the wall or other objects. The place is chosen so that the test person has a fixed orientation point available and is not distracted by other test procedures.

5. Measurement recording

All correctly performed sit-ups within 40 seconds are counted.

Hard criteria for this are:

  •     Fingertips to temple and thumbs behind earlobes
  •     Hand position must not be changed during performance
  •     Shoulders must be in contact with the mat when lowering the upper body
  •     Both elbows must touch one knee

Standard values
Numerous studies are available with information on mean values and standard deviations (see Beck & Bös, 1995, p. 118ff). For the push-up there are also comparative values for children and adults in the test literature (Bös, 1996, p. 56), for other test variants in Bös (2004), Fetz and Kornexl (1993), Grosser and Starischka (1981; cf. also chapter 3.1.2). Normal values for children and adolescents 6-18 are published in the DMT Manual (Bös et al., 2009).

6. Test instruction

This test is about doing as many sit-ups as possible in 40 seconds. You'll lie on your back and place your feet as I'll show you in a moment. Then I'll hold you by your feet. You put your fingertips to your temples and your thumbs behind your earlobes. Then you roll up until your elbows touch your knees. Then roll back down until your shoulder blades touch the ground. Then roll your upper body back up. You begin with my start command.

7. Special notes

Check that the correct starting position is assumed, and ensure that the elbows touch the knees each time they are raised. The subject's pelvis must not leave the floor during performance. The loads on the spine that occur during straightening are not problematic for healthy subjects.
The legs of the test subjects are held in place by the test administrator during the test.
The task is performed with sports shoes.

Sources of error
The participants do not touch the knees correctly and go back down too soon.
The hands do not remain at the temples.
The shoulder is not put down correctly.

8. Sources

Beck, J. & Bös, K. (1995). Normwerte motorischer Leistungsfähigkeit: Köln: Strauss.

Bös, K. (1996). Fitness – testen und trainieren. München: Copress Verlag, 54-56.

Bös, K. (2004). Wie fit sind Sie? München: Copress.

Bös, K., Schlenker, L., Büsch, D., Lämmle, L., Müller, H., Oberger, J. & Tittlbach S. (2009). Deutscher Motorik-Test 6 - 18. (DMT 6 - 18) (Schriften der Deutschen Vereinigung für Sportwissenschaft, 186). Hamburg: Czwalina.

Fetz, F., & Kornexl, E. (1993). Sportmotorische Tests: praktische Anleitung zu sportmotorischen Tests in Schule und Verein. Wien: ÖBV, Pädag. Verlag.

Grosser, M. & Starischka, S. (1981). Konditionstests. München: BLV


Zurück zur Übersicht