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Goals of Motor Behavior
Understand how motor skills are learned
§Understand how motor skills are controlled
§Understand how learning and control of motor skills changes across the lifespan
acquisition of motor skills as a result of practice and experience
neurophysiological and behavioral processes affecting the control of skilled movements
origins of and changes in movement behavior throughout the lifespan
- Relatively permanent change in behavior or performance as a result of instruction, experiences, study, and/or practice.
- Inferred from changes in performance.
- §Motor behavior is concerned with the learning or acquisition of skills across the lifespan.
Thorndike: Law of Effect
When responses were rewarded, the behavior was strengthened
Early Period (1880-1940)
Research focused on how the mind worked, not the production of skills
Middle Period (1940-1970)
Craik focused research on how the brain processes and uses information to determine the motor response.
§Henry - “Memory drum theory” (role of cognitive activity in motor learning)
Present Period (1970-present)
Emergence of motor learning and motor control within physical education programs.
§Closed Loop theory (Adams)
§Schema theory (Schmidt)
§Dynamical Systems theory (Kelso)
- individual- heredity, past experience, individual characteristics
- task- demands rules difficulty, equipment
- environment- teacher skills and behavior, sociocultural, characterisitcs, weather
Stages of Learning
- Cognitive Stage -Understanding of the nature and goal of the activity initial attempts at the skill - gross errors
- Associative Stage -Practice on mastering the timing of the skill Fewer and more consistent errors
Autonomous Stage -Well coordinated and appears effortless Few errors “Automatic” performance allows attention to be directed to other aspects of skill performance
- Study of the origins and changes in movement behavior throughout the lifespan.
- Biological and environmental influences on motor behavior from infancy to old age.
- Influence of psychological, sociological, cognitive, biological, and mechanical factors on motor behavior.
- Rate and sequence of development.
- Maturational Period (1928-1946)
- Research on the underlying biological processes guiding maturation.
- Focus on rate and sequences of motor development from infancy in terms of acquisition of rudimentary and mature movements.
- Normative/Descriptive Period (1946-1970s)
- Description of the motor performances of children.
- Research on how growth and maturation affect performance and the impact of perceptual-motor development.
- Process-Oriented Period (1980s-present)
- Research on how cognitive factors influence motor skill acquisition and motor development based on dynamical systems theory.
Phases of Development
- Early reflexive & rudimentary movement phases
- Hereditary is the primary factor for development. Sequential progression of development but individuals’ rates of development will differ.
- Fundamental movement phase
- Skill acquisition based on encouragement, instruction, and opportunities for practice.
- Specialized movement phase
- Skill refinement
- Hereditary and environmental factors influence the rate of the aging process.
Fundamental motor skills
are the foundation for development of more complex and specialized motor skills used in games, sports, dance, and fitness activities.
Fundamental Motor Skills
- Examples: walking, running, jumping, hopping, leaping, sliding, skipping, galloping, dodging
- Examples: bending, stretching, pushing, pulling, twisting, turning, swinging
- Examples: throwing, catching, striking, kicking, dribbling, volleying
- Rate of progress in developing these skills varies with each individual.
- Several fundamental motor skills can be combined to create a specialized movement necessary in an activity.
- Lack of development of fundamental skills may hinder future participation in activities.
Acquisition of Fundamental Skills
- Initial Stage (~ age 2) Poor spatial and temporal integration of skill movements.
- Improper sequencing of the parts of the skill
- Poor rhythm, difficulties in coordination
- Elementary Stage (~ age 3 & 4)
- Greater control and rhythmical coordination
- Temporal and spatial elements are better synchronized.
- Movements are still restricted, exaggerated, or inconsistent.
- Mature Stage (~age 5 or 6)
- Increased efficiency, enhanced coordination, and improved control of movements.
- Greater force production
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