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Article

Effects of the COVID-19 Lockdown on Portuguese Children’s Motor Competence

1
Faculdade de Motricidade Humana, Universidade de Lisboa, 1499-002 Cruz-Quebrada, Portugal
2
Escola Superior de Educação de Lisboa, Instituto Politécnico de Lisboa, 1549-003 Lisboa, Portugal
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Centro Interdisciplinar de Estudos Educacionais, CIED, 1549-003 Lisboa, Portugal
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Departamento de Ciências do Movimento Humano, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Santos 11015-020, Brazil
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Escola Superior de Desporto e Lazer, Instituto Politécnico de Viana do Castelo, 4960-320 Melgaço, Portugal
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Research Center in Sports Sciences Health Sciences and Human Development, CIDESD, 5000-801 Vila Real, Portugal
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CIPER, Faculdade de Motricidade Humana, Universidade de Lisboa, 1499-002 Cruz-Quebrada, Portugal
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Zoe Knowles
Children 2021, 8(3), 199; https://doi.org/10.3390/children8030199
Received: 5 February 2021 / Revised: 2 March 2021 / Accepted: 4 March 2021 / Published: 7 March 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sports Science for Children)
During long periods without school, children are more susceptible to unhealthy behaviors, such as an increase in sedentary behaviors, which has a negative impact on children’s motor competence (MC). The COVID-19 lockdown offered us a unique opportunity to test, in a quasi-experimental setting, the impact of lockdown movement restrictions on children’s MC. We assessed the motor competence of 114 children aged 6–9 years using the motor competence assessment. All children were tested before and after the COVID-19 lockdown. Chi-square and 2 × 2 ANOVA (sex by moment) were used to further analyze the data. Regardless of sex, motor performances in all tests (except for jumping sideways in boys) were lower when compared with performances before lockdown. There was a marked decreasing trend in children’s levels of MC, shifting from an upper to a lower quartile in different tests. The results after the lockdown were always significantly inferior to the results before lockdown in all motor tests (except jumping sideways), in the three components of MC, and in global MC. Children’s global MC score decreased by an average of 13 points in boys and 16 points in girls. The imposed movement restrictions had a negative effect on children’s motor competence development. View Full-Text
Keywords: lockdown; COVID-19; motor competence; physical activity; children lockdown; COVID-19; motor competence; physical activity; children
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MDPI and ACS Style

Pombo, A.; Luz, C.; de Sá, C.; Rodrigues, L.P.; Cordovil, R. Effects of the COVID-19 Lockdown on Portuguese Children’s Motor Competence. Children 2021, 8, 199. https://doi.org/10.3390/children8030199

AMA Style

Pombo A, Luz C, de Sá C, Rodrigues LP, Cordovil R. Effects of the COVID-19 Lockdown on Portuguese Children’s Motor Competence. Children. 2021; 8(3):199. https://doi.org/10.3390/children8030199

Chicago/Turabian Style

Pombo, André, Carlos Luz, Cristina de Sá, Luis P. Rodrigues, and Rita Cordovil. 2021. "Effects of the COVID-19 Lockdown on Portuguese Children’s Motor Competence" Children 8, no. 3: 199. https://doi.org/10.3390/children8030199

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