Clarifications are definitely in order.
First... What I want - if possible - is for everyone to perform the same test. Yes, it is possible that some folks won't be able to do a single pull-up. Yes, it is possible that some folks won't even be able to do a single standard (from the feet) push-up.
Yes, a zero score can be brought into the whole combined-score scenario. For example...
Person A = 0 pull-ups
Person B = 2 pull-ups
Person C = 4 pull-ups
Mean = 2.0
Standard Deviation = 2.0
(You can check this out in a standard Excel spreadsheet)
Z-Scores: (Raw Score - Mean)/StdDev
Person A = (0-2)/2 = -1
Person B = (2-2)/2 = 0
Person C = (4-2)/2 = 1
So the Z-scores tell us that Person A (with no pull-ups) scored a standard deviation unit below the average, and Person C (with 4 pull-ups) scored a standard deviation unit above the average. Person B represents the average performance.
These scores then could be averaged in with the scores on other categories to get a total score.
Acutally Bill I'd say there is some tricep cross over between the two on the extension for the pull up but that's based on what I feel.
I won't disagree with what you feel or what you are doing, Dana. But I will tell you that - if this is true - this represents an inefficiency in how you are doing the exercise.
Climbers learn this VERY quickly. You learn to use only the muscles you need to use to hold on to the wall, or move from point A to point B. Otherwise you tire extremely quickly and drop.
Like Sanchin (which you do better than most humans alive, Dana), practice makes perfect. You need to tense only what you want to tense, and relax everything else. Yes, there is a coordination element involved if you want to maximize your score. I don't dispute that.
Biceps bend the arm at the elbow; triceps extend the arm at the elbow. In exercises that do purely extension (positive or negative), you use triceps. In exercises that do purely flexion (positive or negative), you use biceps. This is just the basic principle in how a muscle works. They pull; they do not push.
In athletic movements, you often tend to use both because the muscles are behaving dynamically against each other to bring the arm through the desired path.
I have to drop slowly from a pull up because I'm not sure I've got the strength to "catch" myself in a plyometric way at the bottom and I dont' want to hurt my elbows.
I think you do, Dana, at least for one time. Otherwise you wouldn't even have the ability to do the flexed-arm hang. That exercise requires that you start with biceps and lats fully flexed, and maximize the time you can keep them flexed. Your time is up when the arm and shoulder joints are fully extended.
There are reasons not to ask women to do pull-ups. But I don't think this is a reason.
Furthermore, karateka have very strong dynamic stretch reflexes in their biceps. It's what keeps them from hyperextending the elbows in a Sanchin thrust. Remember back when you first started karate, and got "karate elbow?" That's before you developed that reflex. Trust me - it's alive and well in you now, unless your elbow has a pre-existing injury.
60 seconds of flex arm hang = 1 pull up does not make sense. Please enlighten me. That seems like comparing apples and oranges. Is this a standard you found someplace else?
I agree with Dana on this. The flexed arm hang is really difficult. The Marines award the same top score of 100 to a female that can hang 70 seconds that a male is required to do 20 pullups to achieve. By that standard a 60 second arm hang is worth more than one pullup.
Be careful, Rich. Now you're getting into an apples-to-oranges comparison.
It is a fact of biology that men have more testosterone than women. It is a fact of biology that testosterone dramatically increases upper-body strength.
The Marines have created separate standards for females and males. The females have a max score that the USMC feels is the max that a female can reasonably be expected to achieve. The males have a max score that the USMC feels a male can reasonably be expected to achieve.
I'm trying to do what that other test you took is trying to achieve, Rich. I'm trying to find one test that everyone can take. And I'm expecting that Uechi women are a little more fit (or even better) than "average" women.
The max score charts Rich gives illustrate the problem. This test was designed for max production in a minute. But the max expected for a USMC woman for flexed-arm hang is a 70 second hang. Meanwhile, the male is grunting out those 20 pull-ups on a different time scale. And fatigue is a factor here.
If a woman can do a flexed-arm hang for 60 seconds and feels that's worth more than 1 pull-up, well then by golly why shouldn't she just knock off two pull-ups and be done with it? Two and done, and rest for the next event. Seems like a deal to me!
The point here is that the woman (or a few males) have a choice
. They can get a greater-than-zero count score on pull-ups by doing a flexed-arm hang for part or all of a minute. If they can do a pull-up, they should do the pull-up and be done with it. That's pretty simple.
The only reason to do differently is the big step from one pull-up to two. If the overlap really is somewhere between 1 and 2 pull-ups, then we can get greater precision of measurement by synching the tests up. But it will never be a perfect synchronization, since positive and negative use of a muscle group require different talents. It's complicated.
I'd prefer to keep this really simple. Simple would be one event. Compromise means a choice, but it introduces complexity. Even if women ONLY can do flex-arm hangs and men ONLY can do pull-ups, now we have something that probably should be done on two different time scales (by Rich's own data). It gets messy.
More data from real people taking the test would help.
If you finish the test, you get credit. But remember - finishing means you have to do all the parts (including at least one pull-up) and do the run
Which is what started this discussion. However on the other thread you said:
I'd like also for people who can't do pull-ups very well (if at all) to do the same. Again, each event only counts 1/6 of the total.
So which is it? Can you still score someone if they get a zero on an event?
Yes, you are good at getting at all the gory details.
Here's the deal, Dana. I believe George wanted to give out patches to people who could achive some kind of standard. He envisioned something that I thought was unworkable, because it involved punching and kicking air which we all know can be done at various levels of effort. I chose instead to use standard fitness assessment tests which should be highly correlated with the ability to do myriad athletic activities - including martial arts. George envisioned winning this distinction with some kind of threshold performance.
I was trying to make a gross stab at what a minimal performance would be. But we're all making very, very gross stabs at it without having data on how people actually would perform with the various events in the context of the total test.
At the end of the day, the raw scores are the raw scores are the raw scores. We can easily keep track of those. I do believe that distinctions (ranks, titles, etc.) should require minimum performance levels, and we don't give them out just because someone shows up. Certainly we don't survive brutal fights on the street just because we paid our karate school tuition and "walked through" all the choreography on our belt tests. But I do believe we can operate martial arts dojos and fitness assessments - and have fun - without worrying about who gets what level of distinction.
I can only properly assess what a level of performance is after getting data. I can easily retroactively give someone a certain level of distinction, providing we keep the testing standards the same over time. In the mean time, I frankly think we should give some kind of award to everyone who can do a bare minimum on all the categories on the very first time we run it. Why? Because YOU WERE THE FIRST and you had the cahones/ovaries to get out there and show us/yourself what you can do. That counts for something, and those are not just empty words. We have a saying in research. Knowing someone else was able to do something is half the battle in being able to do it yourself. First time is ALWAYS harder.
Everyone has the opportunity to benchmark THEMSELVES at THEIR OWN fitness level, and then see if they can do any better next time around. And if that's all we are able to achieve with this, we have accomplished a lot.