The Cooper Institute

Founded in 1970 by the "Father of Aerobics"
Kenneth H. Cooper MD, MPH


FITNESSGRAM® is a health related physical fitness assessment. Each of the test items was selected to assess important aspects of a student's health related fitness, not skill or agility. Students are compared not to each other, but to health fitness standards, carefully established for each age and gender, that indicate good health. More information on the standards is available in the Reference Guide.

Once the assessment has been done, the FITNESSGRAM report provides objective, personalized feedback and positive reinforcement which are vital to changing behavior and serve as a communications link between teachers and parents and students.

Three Areas of Fitness

The FITNESSGRAM assessment includes items in following three areas of fitness:

  1. Aerobic Capacity
  2. Body Composition
  3. Muscle Strength, Endurance, and Flexibility

Aerobic Capacity

  • The Pacer: 20 meter progressive, multi-stage shuttle run set to music (The PACER is also available in a 15 meter distance)
  • One Mile Walk/Run
  • Walk Test: Available for secondary students

Body Composition

  • Percent Body Fat: Calculated from triceps and calf skinfold measurements
  • Body Mass Index: Calculated from height and weight

Muscle Strength, Endurance, and Flexibility

  • Abdominal Strength: Curl-up Test
  • Trunk Extensor Strength and Flexibility: Trunk Lift
  • Upper Body Strength: 90 degree Push-up, Flexed Arm Hang, Modified Pull-up
  • Flexibility: Back-saver Sit-and-reach, Shoulder Stretch

Impacting Future Generations

FitnessGram NFL Play 60

FITNESSGRAM is provided in partnership with NFL Foundations as a part of the NFL PLAY 60 program. Since 2009, NFL Foundation (previously NFL Charities) has awarded The Cooper Institute $4 million to support the NFL PLAY 60 campaign, an initiative that challenges youth to be active 60 minutes a day.

Learn More