Comparison of motor abilities between Down Syndrome children and typical developing children
The aim of this study was to assess gross motor abilities, classifying them in stages, of children with Down syndrome (DS) and children without developmental disorders, and to compare them with each other. Twelve children with DS, from two special schools and twelve children without development disorders, from a regular school of Caxias do Sul city, in Brazil, were evaluated. Six gross motor abilities were assessed: balance in one foot, walking on straight line, running, jumping on one foot, throwing and catching, through the tables of Gallahue and Ozmun (2001). The children with DS could not keep up with the control group children to which they were compared in five motor abilities, specially on the balance on one foot, in which all the children were at initial stage. In the throwing test, children with DS had similar performance to the ones in the control group. These results can, mostly, be attributed to the neurological alterations related to the syndrome, which cause problems of balance, coordination, strength, postural reactions and response speed to stimulation. The findings of this study call attention to the importance of the evaluation and physiotherapy intervention strategy of DS children to development of the gross motor abilities.
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