[video=youtube;_ajI1lLRJN0]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ajI1lLRJN0[/video] This simple test measures muscle strength, balance, and flexibility; three key factors doctors and scientists everywhere are using to determine health and longevity. All of these attributes are essential for day-to-day living, and for maintaining your independence as you age. Using no equipment and taking just a matter of seconds, all the subject has to do it sit down and get back up. Sounds simple enough right? Here's where it gets tricky for some: Don't touch the floor with your knees, elbows, or thighs to get yourself in and out of the sitting position. And the biggest hurdle for some: No hands! SRT, or the sitting-rising test, was designed to eliminate external factors such as human error in using a stopwatch and variables such as seat depth and chair arm length when testing subjects. This is why the controls are simply a clear floor space and a willing subject. Try This At Home: 1. Stand in comfortable clothes in your bare feet, with clear space around you. 2. Without leaning on anything, squat and lower yourself to a cross-legged sitting position on the floor. 3. Once comfortable, stand back up, trying not to use your hands, knees, forearms or sides of your legs. How Scoring Works: The test is scored on a point scale between 1 and 10 (5 points for sitting, 5 more points for standing back up). Each time you use an arm or knee for help in balancing during the test, you subtract one point from 10 possible points. Half a point is subtracted each time you lose balance, or when the fluidity of the feat becomes clumsy. According to a study published in the European Journal of Cardiology by the creator of the test, Brazilian physician Claudio Gil Araujo, each point increase in the SRT score was associated with a 21 percent decrease in mortality from all causes. Araujo's study showed that people who scored fewer than eight points on the test, were twice as likely to die within the next six years compared with those who scored higher; those who scored three or fewer points were more than five times as likely to die within the same period compared with those who scored more than eight points. Translation: the closer you are to scoring a perfect 10/10, the greater your chances are of living longer compared to those who score less. This test was performed on over 2,000 patients over the age of 50, so if you are under 50 and have trouble with this test, it should make you do a double-take on your health. The SRT is frequently used by physicians testing the elderly, but also by coaches testing athletes to keep them on their game. The hope for this test, Araujo says, is for more people to get proactive about their health rather than eventually ending up in emergency rooms. [Images: Roen Kelly/Discover Video: Dr. Rooley/Youtube Statements: Discover Magazine and Mother Nature Network] A friend and I both tried this test and scored each other 9.5/10 and 10/10. What's your score? To make it fun, challenge people you think are in better and worse shape than you. The results might surprise you!