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Open AccessArticle

Motor Skill Improvement in Preschoolers: How Effective Are Activity Cards?

Department of Sport, Exercise and Health, University of Basel, Birsstrasse 320B, CH-4052 Basel, Switzerland
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Sports 2014, 2(4), 140-151; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports2040140
Received: 7 October 2014 / Revised: 24 November 2014 / Accepted: 26 November 2014 / Published: 5 December 2014
Strategies to early develop and implement motor skill promotion in preschoolers are lacking. Thus, we examined the effects of a card-based exercise promotion program in a kindergarten setting. 214 preschool children (5.5 ± 0.6 y, range 4.2–6.7 y) were examined in the present intervention study. Body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference were measured. Children were randomly assigned to the KIDZ-Box® physical activity intervention program (INT: n = 107) or the control group (CON: n = 107). Children were trained daily for 15 min over 7 month at the preschool for agility, balance, endurance and jump performance, employing the card-based KIDZ-Box® media package. At pre- and post-testing, dynamic balance, jump and agility performance were tested. Cross-sectionally, agility testing differed between sexes (p = 0.01) and BMI (p = 0.02). Trends towards a significant association were found between BMI and side-to-side jumping (p = 0.1) and beam balancing (p = 0.05). Relevant interventional effects favoring the intervention group were slightly found for agility (p = 0.04, ηp2 = 0.02) and moderately for side-to-side jumping (p < 0.001, ηp2 = 0.08). Balance performance did not relevantly improve. As jumping cards have been used frequently by the teachers, jumping improvements are plausible. The activity cards are feasibly applicable but should be employed with more structure during longer training sessions. View Full-Text
Keywords: kindergarten; motor skill; intervention; preschool children; exercise kindergarten; motor skill; intervention; preschool children; exercise
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Donath, L.; Imhof, K.; Roth, R.; Zahner, L. Motor Skill Improvement in Preschoolers: How Effective Are Activity Cards? Sports 2014, 2, 140-151.

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