South African Journal for Research in Sport, Physical Education and Recreation

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Balance and bilateral skills of selected previously disadvantaged children aged 9 to 12 years

Eileen K Africa, Karel J Van Deventer


The main aim of the study was to design an appropriate motor skills development programme that could be implemented in any primary school to improve the fundamental motor skills (FMS) of children between the ages of 9 and 12 years old. One previously disadvantaged (Quintile 2) school in the Stellenbosch region was selected to participate in the study. The children (N=67) were conveniently selected to participate in the study and were divided into an experimental (n=35) and a control group (n=32). Only the experimental group participated in the motor skill development programme for 12 weeks. No significant differences were found for the mean balance score within the experimental and the control group or between the pre- and post-test. However, there were significant differences found for the mean bilateral coordination scores between the pre- and post-test of the experimental group but not with the control group. This could be attributed to the 12-week intervention programme presented to the experimental group. It is suggested that this programme may be beneficial to all primary school children, not only those from previously disadvantaged schools.

Key words: Balance; Bilateral coordination; Children; Fundamental movement skills.

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