What is a body composition scan?

In health and fitness, body composition describes the percentages of different components within the human body. This includes fat, muscle, bone, tissue and water. Two people with the same height and weight could have different health issues and challenges because their body composition is different.

Body composition scans provide detailed and precise information about your body composition. The scans measure muscle mass, fat mass, water and minerals, and analyses the results to give you a better understanding of your health and fitness.

At the Y, we use Evolt 360 Body Composition Scanners at many of our recreation centres. They are a great way to support your health and wellness journey by showing you exactly how your body is responding to your training program.

Benefits of a body composition analysis

Body composition scans are a great way to start your fitness journey. They show you exactly how much muscle mass you have, as well as other valuable data about your body. With these insights, your trainer can create an effective program to help you achieve your goals.

You’ll also be able to measure and track how your body is responding to your training program. It’s great to be able to see the rewards of your hard work and better understand the effects on your body. For example, you may weigh the same but have lost fat and gained muscle mass. It takes the guess work out of training!

Body composition scans can even help to identify, monitor and fight health risks. For example, a scan could detect age-related diseases like sarcopenia (the progressive loss of muscle mass and strength). Monitoring your muscle mess regularly can help to reduce the risk of sarcopenia and support early intervention. 

Whether you’re aiming to tone up, bulk up or prevent age-related diseases, a body scan can help you train effectively and achieve the results you’re after. 

360 body scan illustrative image of body being scanned

What is an Evolt 360 body scan?

Evolt 360 is a body composition scanner that we use at various Y recreation centres.   

The scanner provides a detailed report on your body composition through a quick 60 second scan.  

Gain useful insights into health markers such as:

  • body fat; 
  • lean muscle mass; 
  • protein mass; 
  • skeletal muscle mass;  
  • visceral fat; 
  • water weight and percentage. 

What will an Evolt 360 body scan report show me?

The Evolt 360 body composition analysis provides detailed measurements on the below areas.  

  • Lean body mass – this is everything that is not fat (including skeletal muscle mass, protein, minerals and water) plus anything in your digestive system that hasn’t been digested. 
  • Skeletal muscle mass – the muscle attached to the skeletal system. 
  • Protein content – the amount of protein in your body. 
  • Mineral weight – your mineral bone weight (not density). 
  • Total body water – the amount of water in your body. 
  • Body fat mass – your total body fat in kilograms. 
  • Subcutaneous fat mass – your external body fat (anything that you can see).
  • Visceral fat – the internal body fat that surrounds your vital organs. 
  • Total body fat percentage – your combined amount of subcutaneous fat and visceral fat. 
  • Total body water – your hydration levels, inside and outside of your cells.
  • Basal metabolic rate (BMR) – the minimum amount of energy (calories) required to sustain vital functions and keep your body functioning while at rest for a 24-hour period. 
  • Total energy expenditure (TEE) – the total amount of calories you burn in a 24-hour period for essential processes such as eating, breathing, circulating blood and digesting food, adjusted to your activity level. 

The report from your Evolt 360 scan provides a numeric result for each of these areas with a grading of ‘optimal’, ‘under’ or ‘high’.

The report also provides personalised reference ranges from the World Health Organisation so you can get an idea of what’s normal for someone your height, weight, age and gender. 

An example of an Evolt 360 body scan report print out

  • How often should I have a body composition scan?

    How often you have a body composition scan depends on you and your goals. We recommend having scans every six to eight weeks so that we can accurately monitor your progress and make relevant adjustments to your training program.

  • How does a body composition scan work?

    Step onto the body scanner machine with bare feet (no need to remove clothing). The machine will take your weight then instruct you to pick up the handles, press down on the trigger buttons and move your arms away from your body into the required position.  

    Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) is used to measure your body composition. BIA works by sending a safe, low intensity electrical current through your body via your hands and feet. 

    When the electrical current passes through different types of tissue, the scanner measures the different levels of resistance. For example, the current moves slower through fat mass compared to lean body mass.  

    The technology combines your resistance levels with your age, gender, height and weight to determine your individual muscle mass, fat mass, water and mineral measurements. 

  • How to prepare for a body scan?

    While there are no specific requirements to follow before having your Evolt 360 scan, there are a few factors that can affect your body composition measurements. This includes:

    • body temperature;
    • consumed food;
    • hormone levels (for example, the stage in the menstrual cycle);
    • hydration;
    • medication.

    For the most accurate results, it’s a good idea to eat first thing in the morning on an empty bladder and stomach with overall good hydration. Avoid caffeine and physical activity before your scan and try to schedule your scan at the same time of day each time you go.

    These conditions are not compulsory. For example, you can still scan after eating a meal. Just remember to maintain these same conditions the next time you have a body scan. Similarly, it doesn’t matter what phase of the menstrual cycle you have a body scan as long as you try to do follow up scans in the same phase.

    In summary, there are no pre-scan requirements, but aim for consistent conditions each time you have a body scan.

  • How long does the scan take?

    The Evolt 360 scan takes 60 seconds. You’ll get your full report with your results a few minutes afterwards.

    When you get a body composition scan at one of our recreation centres, we’ll book you in for a 15 minute session. This session includes the scan, results and recommendations. Our trainers will go through your results with you, providing explanations and personalised recommendations to help you achieve your goals.

Where can I get a body composition scan?

Evolt 360 scanners are located at many Y-managed recreation centres across Melbourne and Victoria. Members at our centres can get a free body composition scan as part of their health and wellness membership. Take a look at our locations below to find a body composition scan near you.