The purpose this study was to examine the association between motor skill competence in three motor skills and six measures of health-related physical fitness. Children (N = 101; 69 boys, 32 girls), ages 11-13, participated in the study. We assessed motor skill competence by measuring maximum kicking and throwing ball velocities using a JUGS radar gun and maximum distance jumped in the standing long jump. We assessed children’s physical fitness using FITNESSGRAM testing protocols for push-ups, curl-ups, sit-and-reach flexibility, PACER, and body composition. We also tested grip strength using a hand dynamometer as a measure of upper body strength. We used multiple regression to examine the association between individual motor skill scores and the physical fitness scores for all participants, as well as by gender. An alpha level of .05 was implemented to determine significance. Multiple regression results including all participants indicated the six physical fitness measures substantially contributed to the amount of variance explained in kicking velocity (r² = .48, p < .001), throwing velocity (r² = .41, p < .001), and distance jumped (r² = .48, p < .001). When analyzed by gender, fitness measures explained more variance in kicking velocity for girls (r² = .48, p = .001) than for boys (r² = .33, p < .001). In throwing, fitness measures explained a moderate amount of variance for boys (r² = .20, p < .004), but the regression model was not significant at .05 for girls (p = .10). Fitness measures explained more variance in jump distance for boys (r² = .50, p = .001) than for girls (r² = .27, p = .036). This data indicates that developing motor skill competence in kicking, throwing, and jumping may have a significant impact on health-related physical fitness in adolescent boys and girls.

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Journal: Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology. 2007 Jul 2;29

Keywords: children, Heart Rate, motor skill competence, physical fitness,

Applications: Heart Rate,

CamNtech Reference: AH07013

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