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Components of Fitness

Components of Fitness

Fitness is not only about building muscular strength and endurance, but also about gaining flexibility, speed, and balance. This article discusses the various components of fitness.
Aastha Dogra
People often mistake health for fitness. In fact, being healthy and being fit are two different things all together. A person is considered healthy when he is physically, mentally, spiritually, and socially fit. On the other hand, fitness is used to describe just the physical part of overall health. Do you know that experts have further divided physical fitness into a number of small components?


There are in all, five health related components, namely, cardiovascular endurance, flexibility, muscular strength, muscular endurance, and body composition. Here are the scientific definitions for each one of them.

Muscular Endurance: It is the ability of a particular muscle, or a group of muscles, to continue to exert force or to sustain work for an extended period of time.

Body Composition: It is a measure of the percentage of body fat, in relation to the total body mass of a person.

Muscular Strength: It is defined as the maximum force that a muscle, or a group of muscles, can exert in a single effort, while facing resistance.

Cardiovascular Endurance: Cardiovascular endurance depicts how effectively the heart delivers blood, oxygen, and nutrients, to the working muscles. It is also a measure of the muscles ability to use these nutrients effectively.

Flexibility: It is the ability of the body to move a joint, or a group of joints, through an entire range of motion, without any hindrance from excess fat or muscle.

A person should understand his body's composition, and work towards its betterment. As excess fat in the body can have a negative effect on one's overall health. Fat loss can be stimulated by engaging in physical activities regularly, this will also increase cardiovascular endurance, muscular endurance, and muscular strength, and help the person to achieve the right body composition.

Performance Related Elements

Performance related elements affect a person's athletic ability. There are five such elements, namely, speed, agility, power, motor skills, and balance. By regularly training, following a workout program, losing weight, and following a healthy and balanced diet, one can greatly improve upon these fronts.

In addition to these elements, there are certain principles of exercising which should be followed by everybody, especially by the athletes. These principles are:
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Include cardiovascular endurance, muscular endurance, flexibility, and muscular strength in your exercise program.
  • Maintain a balance of all these components in your workout program.
  • Increase the intensity of training from time to time, in order to build endurance.
Along with exercising, giving the body ample time to rest is equally important. So, strenuous activity days should be followed by either a rest day, or a light exercise day. Keeping all these important principles in mind is very important while designing a workout program.
Woman smiling at the camera mid-workout at the gym
Serious woman doing sit ups on a pink exercise mat