A dance programme to enhance gross motor skills and body awareness of selected children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder

Van Zyl, Analja (2017-12)

Thesis (MScSportSc)--Stellenbosch University, 2017

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Although over 7 decades of research on Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) have been conducted, research focusing on gross motor skills (GMS) development in these children have been neglected. However, it has been suggested that GMS may be a window for research. Recent studies indicate that creative movement is a viable form of therapy for children with ASD, as these children develop body-awareness through movement. A creative movement programme has not been conducted on South African children with ASD. Therefore, the main aim of this study was to explore the possible effect of a dance programme's on the GMS and body awareness of selected verbal children with ASD. The age ranges of the subjects were between 7 and 14 years old. The subjects (N=15) were selected from a LSEN school in Mitchells Plain, Cape Town, South Africa. They were randomly divided into an experimental (n=7) and control group (n=8). The primary data was collected using the Quick Neurological Screening Test-3 (QNST-3) and Bruininks-Oseretsky Test of Motor Proficiency-2 (BOT-2), pre- and post-intervention. The experimental group participated in the intervention consisting twice per week, while the control group continued with daily activities. The duration of the intervention was 16 weeks, which was between 45 and 60 minutes. The data were analysed by means of statistical analysis that was derived from the mixed model repeated measures ANOVA. The results for the QNST-3 indicated that the experimental group improved by 50% (p≤0.01). Additional improvements were concluded from the BOT-2 where the experimental group improved by 26% (p≤0.01). Both quantitative evaluations indicated that the control group’s skills deteriorated over time. It was gratifyingly concluded that a creative movement programme is beneficial for enhancing the GMS and body awareness of verbal children with ASD. Future research is required to assess the effect of the programme on nonverbal children with ASD. Keywords: Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), gross motor skills, body awareness, creative movement, lower socio-economic status community, South Africa.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hoewel heelwat navorsing die afgelope 7 dekades oor Outismespektrum-versteuring (OSV) gedoen is, het studies oor die ontwikkeling van groot motoriese vaardighede (GMV) van Outisitiese kinders dikwels agterweë gebly. Ruimte vir navorsing oor GMV bestaan egter wel. Onlangse studies toon dat kreatiewe beweging 'n bruikbare terapievorm vir kinders met OSV is aangesien dié kinders liggaamsbewustheid deur beweging aanleer. ’n Kreatiewe bewegingsprogram is nog nie vir Suid-Afrikaanse kinders met OSV gebruik nie. Die hoofdoel van hierdie studie is gevolglik om die effek van 'n kreatiewe bewegingsprogram op die GMV en liggaamsbewustheid van (verbale) kinders met OSV te bestudeer.Die deelnemers se ouderdoms reeks was tussen 7 en 14 jaar oud. Die deelnemers (N=15) is vanuit Mitchells Plein, Kaapstad, Suid-Afrika geselekteer. Die deelnemers is op ’n lukrake wyse in 'n eksperimentele groep (n=7) en 'n kontrolegroep (n=8) verdeel. Die primêre data is voor en gedurende die intervensie deur middel van die "Quick Neurological Screening Test-3" (QNST-3) en die "Bruininks-Oseretsky Test of Motor Proficiency-2" (BOT-2) verkry. Die eksperimentele groep het twee keer per week aan die intervensie deelgeneem, terwyl die kontrolegroep aangegaan het met daaglikse aktiwiteite. Die intervensie was tussen 45 en 60 minute en het 16 weke geduur. Die statistiese ontleding is met behulp van die herhaaldemetings- ANOVA volgens ʼn gemengdemodel-benadering gedoen. Die resultaat van die QNST-3 het getoon dat die eksperimentele groep met 50% (p≤0.01) verbeter het. Verder het die BOT-2 op 'n verbetering van 26% gedui (p≤0.01) vir die eksperimentele groep. Albei dié kwantitatiewe evaluasies het aangedui dat die kontrolegroep se GMV mettertyd agteruitgegaan het. Die slotsom is dat 'n kreatiewe bewegingsprogram wel tot die bevordering van OSV en liggaambewustheid van verbale kinders met OSV kan bydra. Toekomstige navorsing word benodig om te bepaal wat die effek van dié program op nie-verbale kinders met OSV sal wees. Sleutelwoorde: Outismespektrum-versteuring (OSV), groot motoriese vaardighede, liggaamsbewustheid, kreatiewe beweging, gemeenskappe met 'n laer sosio-ekonomiese status, Suid-Afrika.

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