Effects of two distinct group motor skill interventions in psychological and motor skills of children with Developmental Coordination Disorder: A pilot study.


Background: Children with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) have an increased risk for mental health difficulties. Objective: The present pilot study aimed to determine whether distinct group intervention programs improved several psychological variables (anxiety; adequacy and predilection for physical activity; participation, preferences, and enjoyment for activities) and motor skills from the perspective of a child with DCD as well as parental perceptions of motor skills, rate of function, and strengths and difficulties. Methods: Eleven children participated in Program A and thirteen in Program B. Both involved 10 sessions of 1 h each. Program A focused on task-oriented activities in a large group involving motor skill training and collaboration and cooperation among children, while Program B was composed of three groups with a direct goal-oriented approach for training of skills chosen by the children. Results: Results indicated that children improved motor skills after both programs, but showed distinct results in regards to other variables-after Program A, children showed higher anxiety and lower levels of enjoyment, even though parents detected an improvement in rate of function and a decrease in peer problems. With Program B, children decreased anxiety levels, and parents noted a higher control of movement of their children. Conclusions: Regardless of the group approach, children were able to improve motor skills. However, it is possible that the differences between groups may have influenced parents’ perception of their children’s motor and psychological skills, as well as children’s perception of anxiety.