The effects of motor skill and physical activity interventions on preschoolers' cognitive and academic skills : A systematic review
Jylänki, P., Mbay, T., Hakkarainen, A., Sääkslahti, A., & Aunio, P. (2022). The effects of motor skill and physical activity interventions on preschoolers' cognitive and academic skills : A systematic review. Preventive Medicine, 155, Article 106948. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2021.106948
Published inPreventive Medicine
© 2021 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc.
The present systematic review aimed to investigate the methodological quality and the effects of fundamental motor skills and physical activity interventions on cognitive and academic skills in typically developing 3 to 7-year-old children. The review was conducted and reported in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) statement. A literature search was carried out in April 2020 using seven electronic databases. The methodological quality of the studies was assessed with the Effective Public Health Practice Project (EPHPP) Quality Assessment Tool. Cohen's d effect size calculations and post hoc power analyses were conducted for the included studies. A total of 35 studies, representing 2472 children met the inclusion criteria. Two of the studies demonstrated a strong methodological quality, while 24 were considered as methodologically weak. The majority (71%) of the included studies demonstrated the beneficial effects of the intervention on cognitive and academic skills. The most evidence was found for executive functions, language, and numeracy, and the effects were largest in enhancing memory. The effects were larger on cognitive and academic skills in the combined interventions compared to only fundamental motor skill and physical activity interventions, while fundamental motor skill interventions had larger effects than physical activity interventions. These findings indicate that it may be possible to support typically developing preschoolers' cognitive and academic learning with fundamental motor skill and physical activity interventions. However, most of the studies in this field have a weak methodological quality and thus, the presented evidence was considered weak in nature. ...
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- Liikuntatieteiden tiedekunta 
Additional information about fundingThis work was supported by the Ministry of Education and Culture [grant number 48825]; and the Finnish Cultural Foundation [Huhtamäen rahasto 2019, no grant number available].
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