Adult Functional Performance

This section provides information on the evolution of the CS-PFP Test, which is used to measure adult functional performance. Fifteen tasks were part of the original CS-PFP Test. Adults ranging in age from 65 to 90+ helped validate the test. This PDF shows how each task is quantified.

Subsequently, the CS-PFP10 was created to shorten test time while maintaining informational integrity. This next PDF illustrates the CS-PFP10 tasks.

Finally, the short video at the bottom of this page provides examples of tasks in each of the 5 domains of function.


CS-PFP Test LogoWith funding from the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Elaine Cress and colleagues developed the CS-PFP Test (Continuous Scale Physical Functional Performance) to mimic activities-of-daily living. The CS-PFP gives an accurate representation of what physical function a person needs to live independently. The original test assessed 15 tasks. CLICK TO VIEW PDF.

The Continuous Scale Physical Functional Performance (CS-PFP), and its shorter version the Continuous Scale Physical Functional Performance – 10 (CS-PFP10), are valid, reliable, and sensitive measures of physical function. CLICK TO VIEW PDF. The test includes functional measures of tasks typically required for independent living. Tasks are quantified by time, weight and distance. The composite scores include a total physical functional performance score and summary scores for 5 domains, upper body strength (UBS), upper body flexibility (UBF), lower body strength (LBS), balance and coordination (BALC), and endurance (END). These summary scores discriminate levels of physical function across populations with a broad range of physical capacity and levels of independence.

The CS-PFP test and CS-PFP10 test have good reliability and are sensitive to detecting change in function in populations with low (older adults living in assisted living) and high (adults living in the greater community) functional levels. An excel spread sheet records the raw data needed for scoring. Scoring is accomplished by entering the raw data into the Physical Functional Performance Data Management software program.

active adult assessment area
Active Adult Assessment Area


The overall philosophy of the CS-PFP10 test developers was to allow the client to select the strategy to perform the task and to perform it at maximal effort. Two factors in particular contribute to the robust psychometric properties of these tests: administration in a standardized environment and adherence to a standardized dialogue. The tasks are administered in a standardized environment with standardized distances and equipment. See the CS-PFP10 Site-Setup Specifications for details.

The CS-PFP10 is a test of functional capacity. The client is instructed to perform each task at maximal effort within the client’s judgment of comfort and safety. The tasks are ordered by level of difficulty from easiest to most difficult. This tasks ordering allows for optimum performance assessment on clients who are unable to complete the test.

Below is an introductory video on the Continuous Scale Physical Functional Performance (CS-PFP) Test Overview.