Aside from accuracy issues, which we’ll address shortly, the biggest downside to conventional body composition measurement tools (including hydrostatic weighing, the skin fold method, bio-electronic impedance, and of course BMI) is that they are all abstract and as such they offer very little in terms of motivational inspiration. Think about it. Have you ever seen anyone give a Tiger Pump over the opportunity to get their body comp or BMI tested? Odds are you’ve not.
The Big Downside of Conventional Measurement Tools
In all four cases they involve complicated formulas that are hardly ever understood by those who are being tested. Data is gathered, entered into the formula, which in turn generates a number that can be improved upon by eating better and exercising more. But the frequency of change is so infrequent that almost no one is interested in retesting on any regular basis. And this lack of frequent feedback leads to a void in motivation and inspiration to keep on keepin’ on.
Regular Return on Your Investment of Time and Effort
On the other hand, the FORE Score protocol revolves around a participant’s ability to physically pull their own weight (do conventional or leg assisted pull ups). And when the stage is set correctly this strategy yields regular, tangible, documented, frequent feedback and improvement week after week for months on end.
The result of frequent improvement is that participants generate a consistent, predictable “return on their investment (ROI)” of time and effort. And as long as that investment keeps paying off, the motivation to continue investing remains strong. In fact it actually grows stronger (a phenomena known in some circles as motivational momentum) instead of fading off into the sunset like the annual new year’s resolution.
And Then There’s the Accuracy Issue
So the single most important advantage of the FORE Score metric over the competition is it’s ability to motivate and inspire its users to eat better and exercise more until their respective goals have been reached. The second most important advantage is FORE Score’s ability to yield accurate, meaningful feedback on body composition changes. That is to say when you lose fat or gain muscle, your FORE Score always improves. But when you gain fat or lose muscle, your FORE Score always deteriorates.
In contrast, BMI in particular is completely unable to distinguish between body fat and muscle mass. It throws all pounds into the general category of “weight” and it makes no attempt whatsoever to distinguish between body fat or muscle mass.
We confess that BMI has two major advantages over the conventional competition. First, it’s significantly cheaper. And secondly it’s universally accepted. And to be honest it’s universally accepted BECAUSE it’s cheap. The skin-fold method, electronic impedance, and hydrostatic weighing (in particular) are all so labor-intensive that they’re too expensive to use in mass (i.e. in schools). Thus in this race, BMI wins by default.*
A Much Bigger Bang for Your Buck
Interestingly though, the labor-intensiveness and so the cost of generating a FORE Score is effectively the same as BMI. The big difference is that a FORE Score gives participants a motivational, inspirational leg up through frequent improvement. It also yields accurate feedback on body composition changes. And those are two huge advantages when it comes to finally winning the war on obesity!**
*There are also accuracy issues/problems with skin-fold, bio-electronic impedance, and hydrostatic weighing. Hydrostatic weighing however is the most expensive and is currently considered the gold standard by most exercise physiologists.
**At the original stages of FORE Score we suggest you use BMI + FORE in order to take full advantage of BMI’s current universal acceptance and lack of expense. In the long run (when the public recognizes and understands FORE) we suggest that you drop BMI in favor of FORE Score exclusively.