Fundamental movement skills and weight status in British primary school children

Elizabeth S Bryant, Michael J Duncan, Samantha L Birch

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Articlepeer-review

76 Citations (Scopus)


Weight status has been shown to have a negative impact on children's competence in performing fundamental movement skills (FMSs). Following ethics approval and informed consent, 281 children in years 2-6 from a school in central England volunteered to participate. Each child performed eight FMSs (run, hop, gallop, jump, balance, kick, throw and catch) three times, all attempts were video-recorded. Video analysis was performed (Quintic Biomechanics software) using the Process Orient Checklist (subjective measurement). Height and weight were measured to calculate body mass index (BMI) and weight status was determined. Results highlighted that year group (age) had a significant effect on seven out of the eight skills (not kick). Year 4 (aged 8-9 years) significantly scored lower in all three locomotor skills (run, hop and gallop) at this age, whereas Year 5 (aged 9-10 years) all significantly peaked at the object control skills (catch and throw) at this age. Weight status (BMI) significantly affected the run, identifying that a child with a larger BMI will have a lower mastery level of the run. Gender significantly affected the kick, throw and balance, with girls outperforming in the balance and the boys in the kick and throw. By highlighting that children at different ages will have a lower score in different skills, the effect of BMI and gender on certain FMS is important knowledge for the target of intervention in primary school children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)730-6
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Sport Science
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Body Mass Index
  • Body Weight
  • Child
  • England
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Motor Skills


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