The Test of Gross Motor Development (TGMD) measures fundamental motor skills competency and is frequently used for eligibility determination of adapted physical education services in children with disabilities. The purpose of this study was to determine if the TGMD-3 is clinically sensitive to detect deficits in the fundamental motor skills of children with disabilities (i.e., intellectual disability, autism spectrum disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, language and articulation disorders). Eighty-five children with disabilities and 85 matched controls (i.e., typically developing, individually matched on age, sex, ethnicity, and race) completed the TGMD-3. Mann–Whitney U tests identified significant differences in the total TGMD-3 scores for children with intellectual disability (p < .001), autism spectrum disorder (p < .001), and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (p = .032). No differences were identified for children with language and articulation disorders. Comparisons of subscales (i.e., locomotor and ball skills) differed across disability groups. This study provides evidence that the TGMD-3 is clinically sensitive to identify deficits in fundamental motor skills competency.
Clinical Validity of the Test of Gross Motor Development-3 in Children With Disabilities from the U.S. National Normative Sample
E. Andrew Pitchford and E. Kipling Webster
Pedometer Variance in Adults With Down Syndrome During Free Walking: A Generalizability Study
E. Andrew Pitchford and Joonkoo Yun
Pedometers are a common instrument used to measure walking activity, yet reliability evidence in disability populations, particularly Down syndrome (DS), has received little attention. There may be systematic and random sources of error that could influence reliability under natural walking conditions. The purpose of this study was to examine the sources of variance and estimate reliability coefficients of spring-levered (SL) and piezoelectric (PZ) pedometers for adults with DS during a free-walking bout.
Seventeen adults with DS and 23 adults without a disability walked continuously for a 20-minute period wearing 2 types of pedometers, SL and PZ. Step counts were analyzed using Generalizability theory to partition and quantify variance components and calculate reliability coefficients.
The largest variance component was due to individual participant differences. Adults with DS demonstrated greater intraindividual variability, but also had relatively low proportions of residual variance, or unexplained error. The SL pedometer showed problems with interunit variance while the PZ pedometer demonstrated little systematic error. Reliability coefficients were consistently higher for the PZ pedometer.
This study found minimal systematic error and moderate reliability evidence for the PZ pedometer. This type of pedometer may be used in future research for adults with DS.
Low Muscle Strength, Low Bone Mineral Density, and High Body Mass Index Among Adult Special Olympics Athletes: A Cross-Sectional Examination
Morgan Cleveringa and E. Andrew Pitchford
Adults with intellectual disabilities have increasing life expectancy but may be susceptible to early aging-related conditions. The purpose of this study was to examine associations between the presence of low muscle strength, low bone mineral density, and high body mass index with age and sex in adult Special Olympics athletes. Grip strength (n = 6,477; 40.9% female), chair stand time (n = 6,444; 40.5% female), body mass index (n = 7,824; 43.7% female), and bone mineral density (n = 3,091; 43.2% female) measurements were provided by Special Olympics International. Poor grip strength, chair stand time, bone mineral density, and body mass index were identified in 43.8%, 46.2%, 28.7%, and 50.3% of each sample, respectively. Increasing age was a risk factor for all conditions (odds ratio = 1.30–10.89; p < .05). High rates of adverse health conditions were observed in a sample of adults with intellectual disabilities. Increased risk was observed as early as the fourth decade of life.
The Accuracy of Pedometers for Adults With Down Syndrome
E. Andrew Pitchford and Joonkoo Yun
The purpose of this study was to examine the accuracy of spring-levered and piezoelectric pedometers for adults with and without Down syndrome (DS). Twenty adults with DS and 24 adults without a disability walked for two minute periods on a predetermined indoor course at a self-selected, slower and faster pace. Pedometer recorded and criterion observed steps were compared to determine pedometer error. There was a significant interaction between pedometer model and walking speed. Piezoelectric pedometers demonstrated significantly less measurement error than spring-levered pedometers, particularly at slower walking speeds. There were also significant differences in pedometer error between adults with and without DS. The study concludes that pedometer measurement error is significantly different for adults with DS but also that piezoelectric pedometers can be used in the future to measure walking activity for adults with and without DS.
ZáNean McClain and E. Andrew Pitchford
ZáNean McClain, E. Andrew Pitchford, and Jill Pawlowski
ZáNean McClain, E. Andrew Pitchford, and E. Kipling Webster
The Instructional Sensitivity of the Test of Gross Motor Development-3 to Detect Changes in Performance for Young Children With and Without Down Syndrome
Kerri L. Staples, E. Andrew Pitchford, and Dale A. Ulrich
The Test of Gross Motor Development is among the most commonly used measures of gross motor competency in children. An important attribute of any developmental assessment is its sensitivity to detect change. The purpose of this study was to examine the instructional sensitivity of the Test of Gross Motor Development—third edition (TGMD-3) performance criteria to changes in performance for 48 children (age 4–7 years) with and without Down syndrome following 10 weeks of physical education. Paired t tests identified significant improvements for all children on locomotor (p < .01) and ball skills (p < .01). These significant differences were associated with moderate to large effect sizes. SEM was low relative to the maximum raw score for each subtest, indicating high confidence in the scores. These findings provide evidence that the TGMD-3 is sensitive to change in performance for children with and without Down syndrome.