Coordination Problems and Anaerobic Performance in Children

in Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly
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Generally, children with coordination problems lack fitness and muscular strength. This study was designed to identify whether these children differed from age-matched controls on measures of anaerobic performance. Twenty-four boys who were poorly coordinated, from three age groups, 7, 8, and 9 years, were compared to 24 coordinated controls (N = 48). The McCarron (1982) Assessment of Neuromuscular Development (MAND) was used to confirm levels of coordination. Anaerobic performance was estimated with the Wingate Anaerobic Test (WAnT) and a 50-m run. The poorly coordinated group’s performance on the WAnT was significantly lower than the performance of the controls for measures of peak power normalized for body weight, absolute and normalized mean power, and the fatigue index. The subjects who were poorly coordinated were also significantly slower performing the 50-m sprint. There was a significant relationship between power measured on the WAnT and coordination measured by the MAND gross motor score. For this population, coordination problems were considered among the factors that may interfere with the measurement of anaerobic performance.

Cameron O’Beirne, Dawne Larkin, and Tim Cable are with the Department of Human Movement, University of Western Australia, Nedlands, Western Australia 6009, Australia. Direct correspondence to Dawne Larkin.

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