The only two pieces of equipment you will need for this test are a stopwatch or a clock and a step. The height of the step you use should be about 12 inches. To perform this test, step up and down at a steady pace while alternating your feet. You should be keeping a four-beat cycle for the entire three minutes. Once the three minutes are up, rest for about five seconds and take your heart rate for fifteen seconds. Then, multiple the number of beats by four to get your Beats Per Minute (BPM).

This test assesses your overall cardiovascular fitness as well as allowing you to determine how quickly you recover. As we all know, the faster your heart rate returns to normal (or your resting heart rate), the better off you are. Once you find out your number of beats per minute immediately after the three minute step session, you will be able to examine where your result fits in.

To analyse your results based on your age and gender as well as to see whether your fitness level is very poor, average or excellent, view the demographic averages via these tables:

Men

Rating18-2526-3536-4546-5556-6565+
Excellent50-7651-7649-7656-8260-7759-81
Good79-8479-8580-8887-9386-9487-92
Above Average88-9388-9492-8895-10197-10094-102
Average95-10096-102100-105103-111103-109104-110
Below Average102-107104-110108-113113-119111-117114-118
Poor111-119114-121116-124121-126119-128121-126
Very Poor124-157126-161130-163131-159131-154130-151

Women

Rating18-2526-3536-4546-5556-6565+
Excellent52-8158-8051-8463-9160-9270-92
Good85-9385-9289-9695-10197-10396-101
Above Average96-10295-101100-104104-110106-111104-111
Average104-110104-110107-112113-118113-118116-121
Below Average113-120113-119115-120120-124119-127123-126
Poor122-131122-129124-132126-132129-135128-133
Very Poor135-169134-171137-169137-171141-174135-155