The impact of motor competence on energy expenditure during object control skill performance in children and young adults

Ryan S. Sacko, Till Utesch, Farid Bardid, David F. Stodden

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Background: An understanding of how motor skill performance levels relate to energy expenditure (EE) is an important, yet relatively unexplored topic that may better inform physical activity interventions.
Aim: This study examined the impact of motor competence (MC) on EE during the performance of object control skills in children and young adults.
Method: Forty-two children (Mage 8.1 years) and 40 young adults (Mage = 23.4 years) completed sessions of throwing and kicking at varying intensity intervals. Polynomial regressions with response surface analysis were conducted to analyze the impact of process- and product-oriented MC levels on EE.
Results: Moderate positive associations among process-oriented motor competence levels and EE were demonstrated in all trial interval conditions with stronger associations shown for shorter trial intervals.
Conclusion: Individuals’ movement quality (process) demonstrated greater associations with EE than performance product (speed), especially with higher intensity skill practice. These results provide additional evidence of the positive impact that MC has on the health benefits of physical activity, specifically during participation in activities that inherently require repeated performance of object control skills.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBrazilian Journal of Motor Behavior
Early online date13 Jan 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 13 Jan 2021


  • motor skills
  • physical activity
  • response surface analysis
  • product-oriented
  • process-oriented

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