Development of fundamental motor skills in children of a public school in the city of Sao Paulo
BACKGROUND: One common observation is that Brazilian children are failing to achieve the expected proficiency, regarding the chronological age, in performing gross motor skills. PURPOSE: The aim was to verify the development of fundamental motor skills of 6- and 9-year-old children from a public school of SÃ£o Paulo city. METHOD: Eight two children were selected from the first and fourth Elementary year, 40 children from the first grade (6.6 year-old, 20 boys and 20 girls) and 42 children from the fourth grade (9.2 year-old, 21 boys and 21 girls). Children were videotaped performing the Test of Gross Motor Development tasks, locomotor and object-control subtests. Three experimenters inspected the video images and rated the childrenâ€™s performance following the suggested criteria. RESULTS: Nine-year-old children were advanced in fundamental motor skill performance compared to 6-year-old, but children from both age groups are delayed to the expected fundamental motor skill development. Moreover, the developmental delay is even worse as chronological age increases, with 6-year-old rated as poor whereas 9-year-old children are rated as very poor in fundamental motor skill development. CONCLUSION: These results raise several concerns regarding the importance of mastering the basic motor skills and future enrolment in motor activities.
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