Southeast Missouri (SEMO) Agility Test

The SEMO Agility Test is a measure of running agility suitable for testing field sport athletes (Kirby, 1971). This test is different from many other agility tests in that it incorporates backwards and sideways movements too.

purpose: to test the ability to manoeuvre the body in a forward, backward and sidewards direction.

equipment required: marker cones, measuring tape, non-slip surface, stopwatch.

pre-test: Explain the test procedures to the subject. Perform screening of health risks and obtain informed consent. Prepare forms and record basic information such as age, height, body weight, gender, test conditions. Measure and mark out the course. Ensure that the subjects are adequately warmed-up. See more details of pre-test procedures.

test layout: Set up the cones as illustrated in the diagram. Four cones are required, making a rectangle 12 x 19 feet (this is the dimensions of a standard basketball court free throw area). For the original test description the measurement was in feet, which converts to 3.7 x 5.8 meters, though for some reason 3.6m x 5.7m is sometimes used.

SEMO agility test

procedure: Start with one foot behind the start line, no rocking movement is allowed. Hand timing starts from the first movement from the set position. Starting at cone 1, move to cone 2 using a side-stepping motion, then turn around the cone and run backpedal to cone 3. Once you are around cone 3, sprint forwards to cone 1, go around the cone and backwards running again to cone 4. Once around cone 4, sprint forwards to cone 2, then side step back to the starting cone 1. Remain facing forwards towards the baseline throughout the test. Two trials are allowed.

scoring: The stopwatch is started with the starting command "go" and stopped when the subject returns to the start/finish line. The fastest time of two trials to the nearest one decimal place is recorded. A good score for males would be greater than 10.5 seconds, for females greater than 12.2 seconds.

target population: this test is suitable for team sport athletes that require movement in multiple directions, such as tennis, volleyball, badminton.

comments: some practice doing this test is helpful, particularly for the backwards running component. Also ensure that the participants run on the outside of each cone.

reference: Kirby, R. F . (1971). A simple test of agility. Coach and athlete, 25(6), 30-31

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