Purpose: This study aimed to improve the prediction accuracy of age at peak height velocity (APHV) from anthropometric assessment using nonlinear models and a maturity ratio rather than a maturity offset. Methods: The dataset used to develop the original prediction equations was used to test a new prediction model, utilizing the maturity ratio and a polynomial prediction equation. This model was then applied to a sample of male youth academy soccer players (n = 1330) to validate the new model in youth athletes. Results: A new equation was developed to estimate APHV more accurately than the original model (new model: Akaike information criterion: −6062.1, R 2 = 90.82%; original model: Akaike information criterion = 3048.7, R 2 = 88.88%) within a general population of boys, particularly with relatively high/low APHVs. This study has also highlighted the successful application of the new model to estimate APHV using anthropometric variables in youth athletes, thereby supporting the use of this model in sports talent identification and development. Conclusion: This study argues that this newly developed equation should become standard practice for the estimation of maturity from anthropometric variables in boys from both a general and an athletic population.
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Job Fransen, Stephen Bush, Stephen Woodcock, Andrew Novak, Dieter Deprez, Adam D.G. Baxter-Jones, Roel Vaeyens, and Matthieu Lenoir
Joric B. Vandendriessche, Barbara Vandorpe, Manuel J. Coelho-e-Silva, Roel Vaeyens, Matthieu Lenoir, Johan Lefevre, and Renaat M. Philippaerts
Discussions of growth and motor performance of children are often set in the context of physical fitness. Although there is a clear theoretical concept or definition of fitness comprising motor coordination, the latter is not systematically considered. This study determined to what extent the variance in motor coordination might be explained by morphological and fitness characteristics. To postulate understanding of this association during childhood, 613 boys aged 7–11 years completed the morphological measurements, the Körperkoordinationstest für Kinder (KTK) and different fitness tests. The results demonstrated a substantial interrelationship among morphology, fitness and motor coordination in elementary school boys. The magnitude of explained variance and the loadings of the canonical correlation between the several constructs are strongly pronounced during childhood indicating that these constructs should be well considered given their contribution to a child’s general development.
Andrew R. Novak, Kyle J.M. Bennett, Adam Beavan, Johan Pion, Tania Spiteri, Job Fransen, and Matthieu Lenoir
This study aimed to determine if the Körperkoordinationstest für Kinder (KTK) remained a valid assessment of motor competence following the removal of the hopping for height subtest (KTK3). Children (n = 2479) aged 6–11 years completed all KTK subtests (KTK4) and motor quotient sum scores (MQS) were determined for the KTK3 and KTK4. Classifications were established as MQS below percentile 5 (P5), MQS between percentile 5–15 (P15), MQS between percentile 15–50 (P15–50), MQS between percentile 50–85 (P50–85), MQS between percentile 85–95 (P85), and MQS higher than percentile 95 (P95). Pearson’s correlation (r = .97) and cross-tabs (Chi2 = 6822.53, p < .001; Kappa = 0.72) identified substantial agreement overall between the KTK3 and KTK4. However, when classified into separate age and gender categories, poor agreement (< 60%) was found in girls: P15 at 8–11 years and P85 at 6–7 years; and in boys: P5 and P15 at 6 years, P85 at 8 years, and P15 at 10 years. Researchers should consider these findings when selecting which KTK protocol to use.
Johanna E.A. Brocken, John van der Kamp, Rene Wormhoudt, Matthieu L. Lenoir, and Geert J.P. Savelsbergh
Purpose: The aim of this study is to measure the concurrent validity of the Athletic Skills Track (AST) by examining whether its outcome score correlates with the holistic judgments of experts about the quality of movement. Method: Video recordings of children performing the AST were shown to physical education teachers who independently gave a holistic rating of the movement quality of each child. Results: Both intra- and interrater reliability of the teachers’ ratings were moderate to good. The holistic judgments on movement quality were significantly correlated with AST time, showing that higher ratings were associated with less time required to complete the track. Next, hierarchical stepwise regression indicated that in addition to the holistic rating, also age, but not gender, explained part of the variance in AST time. Conclusion: The findings show that the AST has good concurrent validity and provides a fast, indirect indication for quality of movement.
Frederik J.A. Deconinck, Dirk De Clercq, Rudy Van Coster, Ann Oostra, Griet Dewitte, Geert J.P. Savelsbergh, Dirk Cambier, and Matthieu Lenoir
This study examined and compared the control of posture during bilateral stance in ten boys with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) of 6-8 years old and ten matched typically developing boys in four sensory conditions (with or without vision, on a firm or complaint surface). In all conditions mean postural sway velocity was larger for the boys with DCD, in spite of a normal score on the balance items of the Movement Assessment Battery for Children. A Group X Condition interaction revealed a larger dependency on vision in the boys with DCD when standing on a firm surface. These results suggest that in this specific subgroup of boys with DCD with predominantly problems in fine motor and ball skills postural control problems may still be prevalent and may possibly be associated with difficulties to re-weight sensory information in response to environmental demands.
Job Fransen, Thomas W.J. Lovell, Kyle J.M. Bennett, Dieter Deprez, Frederik J.A. Deconinck, Matthieu Lenoir, and Aaron J. Coutts
The aim of the current study was to examine the influence of restricted visual feedback using stroboscopic eyewear on the dribbling performance of youth soccer players. Three dribble test conditions were used in a within-subjects design to measure the effect of restricted visual feedback on soccer dribbling performance in 189 youth soccer players (age: 10–18 y) classified as fast, average or slow dribblers. The results showed that limiting visual feedback increased dribble test times across all abilities. Furthermore, the largest performance decrement between stroboscopic and full vision conditions was in fast dribblers, showing that fast dribblers were most affected by reduced visual information. This may be due to a greater dependency on visual feedback at increased speeds, which may limit the ability to maintain continuous control of the ball. These findings may have important implications for the development of soccer dribbling ability.
Lisa M. Barnett, David Stodden, Kristen E. Cohen, Jordan J. Smith, David Revalds Lubans, Matthieu Lenoir, Susanna Iivonen, Andrew D. Miller, Arto Laukkanen, Dean Dudley, Natalie J. Lander, Helen Brown, and Philip J. Morgan
Recent international conference presentations have critiqued the promotion of fundamental movement skills (FMS) as a primary pedagogical focus. Presenters have called for a debate about the importance of, and rationale for teaching FMS, and this letter is a response to that call. The authors of this letter are academics who actively engage in FMS research.
We have answered a series of contentions about the promotion of FMS using the peer reviewed literature to support our perspective.
We define what we mean by FMS, discuss the context of what skills can be considered fundamental, discuss how the development of these skills is related to broader developmental health contexts, and recommend the use of different pedagogical approaches when teaching FMS.
We conclude the promotion of FMS is an important focus in Physical Education (PE) and sport and provide future research questions for investigation.