The influence of participation in target-shooting sport for children with inattentive, hyperactive and impulsive symptoms-A controlled study of best practice.


Background: Practising target-shooting sport requires focused attention and motoric steadiness. A previous non-controlled pilot study suggests that children with impairing symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) benefit from participating in target-shooting sport in local shooting associations, as rated by parents and teachers. This study aims at examining if, and to which extent, target-shooting sport reduces parent- and teacher-reported severity of inattentiveness, hyperactivity, and impulsivity in children with attention difficulties, and if, and to which extend, target-shooting sport improves the children’s wellbeing and quality of life. Methods: A mixed method approach is applied. A non-blinded, waiting list controlled study is combined with a case study, consisting of interviews and observations. The intervention consists of children practising target-shooting sport, by attending a local shooting association, once a week for six months, during regular school hours. Data from questionnaires (ADHD-RS, SDQ, Kidscreen-27), as well as a computerized continued performance test (Qb test), measure the children’s activity and attention. The study includes 50 children in an intervention group and 50 children in a waiting list control group. The Qb test collects data from at least 20 children from the intervention group and at least 20 children from the waiting list control group. Data from the questionnaires and Qb-test is collected at baseline, and six months post intervention. In addition, a case study is carried out, consisting of interviews of at least five children from the intervention group, their parents, teachers and shooting instructors. Observations are carried out, when children are in school and while they are attending the local shooting association. The case study adds to an in-depth understanding of children’s participation in target-shooting sports. Discussion: At present, little is known about the effects and influence of practising target-shooting sport for children experiencing difficulties with inattentiveness, hyperactivity and impulsivity. This study is expected to contribute to an understanding of the influence of participating in target-shooting sports on inattentive, hyperactive and impulsive symptoms, and the effects on the children’s psychological wellbeing and quality of life.