The purposes of the study were to determine if there is a difference in gross motor skill movement competencies between obese and nonobese children; whether Quality Daily Physical Education (QDPE) programs facilitated the development of movement skill in obese children; and whether there is an association between aerobic fitness level and motor performance results. A 2 Sex (male, female) × 2 Group (obese, nonobese) × 2 Age Categories (Grade 1, Grade 4) × 2 Program (QDPE, non-QDPE) completely randomized factorial design was used. Movement competency (Test of Gross Motor Development (TGMD)) and aerobic fitness (20 m shuttle run test) were assessed in 100 age-, sex-, and school-matched obese and nonobese pairs. A significant three-way interaction of Program × Group × Sex was found for the TGMD total score, suggesting that QDPE programs facilitate the development of gross motor skills in those children who are less movement competent to begin with, regardless of their obesity status. Correlations showed that aerobic fitness level was predictive of the TGMD scores. This study provides evidence in support of QDPE programs.
J. Dru Marshall and Marcel Bouffard both are with the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB T6G 2H9.