All you need is: a floor, to wear unrestrictive clothes, and be barefoot. Then try sitting down on the floor and getting up while using as little support as possible. Crossing your legs is ok, if you need to do it.
If you can sit down and get up with only your feet and butt touching the floor you’ll get a score of 10, in other words, without assistance from hands, elbows, knees, or thighs. Sitting and rising are each evaluated separately. You get five points for going down unassisted, and five for getting up unassisted. Points are subtracted for using a supporting hand or knee and for being wobbly.
Watch this four-minute video called the Sitting-Rising Test (SRT), it’s not in English, but has clear and easy English subtitles.
I’ve written a couple of posts before about the ability to crouch or squat and how it goes away as we age in modern societies. So it’s interesting seeing the SRT being developed as a simple test for assessing musculoskeletal function.
While the SRT isn’t a definitive predictor of longevity, it’s a good indicator of general well-being and a higher score hints at better odds for a longer life.
In Rio de Janeiro, 2,002 men and women, ranging from 51 to 80 were given the SRT and then followed for an average of six years. Of the 160 of people who died during the follow-up, only two had scores of 10. The participants with scores below 8 were twice as likely to die and those with a zero score were 5 to 6 times as likely to die.
The study didn’t prove a cause and effect relationship, but it did show capacities for performing daily activities and maintaining a higher quality of life.
The SRT is simple. There’s no equipment and it’s easy to try, score, and understand. You can even self-interpret.