Skinfold Sites


Triceps Skinfold

  • Vertical fold
  • Posterior midline of the upper arm
  • Halfway between the acromion (shoulder) and olecranon processes (elbow)
  • Arm held freely to the side of the body


  • Diagonal fold
  • Men: one-half the distance between the anterior axillary line (crease of the underarm) and the nipple
  • Women: one-third of the distance between the anterior axillary line and the nipple


Midaxillary Skinfold

  • Vertical or Horizontal fold
  • Midaxillary line at the level of the xiphoid process of the sternum


Subscapular Skinfold

  • Diagonal fold
  • 1 to 2 cm below the inferior angle of the scapula


  • Diagonal fold
  • Anterior axillary line (modern technique)
    • immediately superior to the iliac crest
    • in line with the natural angle of the iliac crest taken
  • Mid-axillary line (traditional technique)
    • Superior to the iliac crest


Suprailiac Skinfold

  • Vertical (modern technique)
    • 2 cm or 1" to the right side of the umbilicus
  • Horizontal fold (traditional)
    • 2 cm to the right side of the umbilicus


Thigh Skinfold

  • Vertical fold
  • Anterior midline of the thigh
  • Midway between the proximal border of the patella (upper knee) and the inguinal crease (hip)

Other Sites


  • Vertical fold
  • Anterior aspect of the arm over the belly of the biceps muscle
  • 1 cm above the level used to mark the triceps site


  • Vertical fold
  • maximum circumference of calf on the midline of medial border

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