Self-efficacy toward physical activity and the physical activity behavior of children with and without Developmental Coordination Disorder
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PURPOSE: Affecting 5-6% of children, Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) is a prevalent chronic condition. The nature of the disorder - impaired motor coordination - makes avoidance of physical activity (PA) common. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of barrier and task self-efficacy on PA behavior in children with DCD and a group of typically developing (TD) children. METHODS: Children were compared on their perceived ability to complete different intensities and duration of PA (task efficacy) and their confidence in completing PA when faced with everyday barriers (barrier efficacy). An accelerometer was used to record their activity over the subsequent week. RESULTS: Children with DCD were found to have significantly lower task efficacy and barrier efficacy. They also spent significantly less time in moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA). Multivariate analyses revealed that gender modified the relationship for both groups. Separate multivariate regressions, were therefore conducted by gender. A direct effect of DCD on PA was observed for boys, but not for girls. Further analyses showed that neither task efficacy nor barrier efficacy influenced the relationship between DCD and PA. CONCLUSION: Results from this study confirm that children with DCD have lower task and barrier self-efficacy than TD children and that males have lower PA levels than their TD peers; however neither task or barrier self-efficacy mediated the relationship between DCD and PA.
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