Body Fat Percentage Calculator

When it comes to losing weight, there are a multitude of metrics you can use to gauge your progress. From counting calories, BMIs to checking how much you weigh on the scales.

Thankfully for all those who like to keep on top of their fitness metrics and statistics, there is another method. By measuring your body fat percentage rather than your BMI, you can gain a much more accurate view of how 'in shape' you are.

Body Fat Percentage Calculator

1. Select Method

2. Select Gender

3. Age (years)

3. Height (ft / in)


Select your body type


body fat

Your body type category is

Essential fat



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body fat

Your body type is within the:

Essential fat
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Body Fat Percentage Chart

How do you compare? The body fat percentage category chart from the American Council on Exercise (ACE).

Description Men Women
Essential fat 2-5% 10-13%
Athletes 6-13% 14-20%
Fitness 14-17% 21-24%
Average 18-24% 25-31%
Obese 25%+ 32%+

Body Mass Index

The ideal, healthy BMI is said to be between 18.5 - 25 - anyone below 18.5 is said to be underweight, and anyone over 25 is said to be overweight.

But the BMI metric has come under fire in recent years, largely because of its inability to distinguish between lean muscle mass and body fat. Muscle is more dense than fat, and someone with plenty of muscle density might find that their BMI is in the 'overweight' category. Similarly, those who have more fat than muscle may become complacent in their fitness goals because their BMI is within the 'healthy' range.

The Alternative - Body Fat Percentage

Body fat percentage is the total mass of fat divided by the total mass of the body. Women naturally have a higher body fat percentage than most men, largely because of factors like hormones, breasts and sexual organs. A higher amount of body fat in women is required for ovulation.

How Much Body Fat?

The 'right' amount of body fat varies between each individual. Athletes, for example, will have a much lower level of body fat than someone who simply works out a few times a week to maintain their fitness levels. The general borderline for obesity is having more than 32% body fat for women, and more than 26% body fat for men. A woman deemed to be 'fit' would have between 21-24% body fat, while a man in the 'fit' category would have between 14-17% body fat.

Exercise to reduce body fatReduce your body fat by performing in intense anaerobic workouts such as boxing

Measuring Body Fat

You might not realise it, but you are actually able to measure your own body fat! Here are three ways in which you can do it: (Use the calculator above to assist)

  1. Calipers. You can buy body fat calipers online, pinch your body fat with a caliper and then record the measurement on a chart. Use multiple test sites for the most accurate results, and keep measuring to chart your progress.
  2. Tape measure. The old-fashioned tape measure can also help you measure your body fat percentage. This isn't the most accurate method, but it's great for those who have a tape measure lying around the house and don't want to splash out on calipers or other equipment.
  3. Photos. While you might not be able to glean your body fat percentage from a photo, you'll certainly be able to track your weight loss progress effectively by taking regular photos of yourself. Use the same pose, the same clothing, take pictures at the same time of day to ensure the same light, and stand in front of the same mirror if you can. This will help when you come to line the pictures up side-by-side and see how far you've come.

The goal when measuring your body fat isn't necessarily to get highly accurate measurements - it's more about getting consistent measurements. By focusing on the changes in the number, rather than the accuracy, you can track your progress more effectively.

Body Fat Skinfold Testing Sites

1. Abdominal

Abdominal Body Fat Skinfold

2. Axilla

Axilla Body Fat Skinfold

3. Chest

Chest Body Fat Skinfold

4. Subscapular

Subscapular Body Fat Skinfold

5. Suprailiac

Suprailiac Body Fat Skinfold

6. Thigh

Thigh Body Fat Skinfold

7. Tricep

Tricep Body Fat Skinfold

Tape Measurements

1. Hip

Hip Tape Measurement

2. Neck

Neck Tape Measurement

3. Waist

Waist Tape Measurement

4. Abdominal

Abdominal Tape Measurement

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